Ward One Newsletter, October 2014

Ward 1 News from Minneapolis Council Member Kevin Reich
Visit us at www.minneapolismn.gov/ward1

Date 2014


Kevin Reich
350 S. 5th St.
City Hall, Room 307
Minneapolis, MN 55415

Phone: 612-673-2201



Audubon Park
Columbia Park
Logan Park
Marshall Terrace
Mid-City Industrial
Northeast Park
Waite Park
Windom Park

Council Member's Message

One of the boards I was appointed to when I first assumed office in 2010 was the Mississippi Watershed Management Organization (MWMO). I have been deeply involved in the work of this outstanding organization and proud to serve as its board chair since 2013.

The mission of the MWMO is to lead and foster stewardship of the Mississippi watershed with actions that encourage civic ownership and responsibility and through measures that achieve diverse and functional ecosystems. That mission aligns closely with the priorities of the First Ward, given that we share a border with the river and are part of the watershed. As an added bonus, MWMO's beautiful new headquarters is also located in Ward 1 on the banks of the river. The organization has been nominated for two 2014 ReScape Awards, for community impact and environmental impact, for its transformation of a polluted 1-acre site into an education center, offices, demonstration landscape and pedestrian connection to the Mississippi. You can visit the Minnesota Brownfields website to learn more about the ReScape finalists: http://mnbrownfields.org/rescape-award-finalists-announced-2014/

One of the important ways MWMO fulfills its mission is through funding and implementing projects that have a demonstrable impact on water quality. On a large scale, that work can be seen at the Edison High School parking lot, which was completely reconstructed in 2013 with state-of-the-art Best Management Practices so that it can now capture stormwater before it enters the storm sewers and ultimately the Mississippi. The second phase of this project is currently underway at the Edison athletic field, where MWMO is installing stormwater recapture and re-use infrastructure that will ultimately ensure that no stormwater leaves the site.

Other locations in Northeast where MWMO's work can be seen include the Sentyrz parking lot and the grounds of the Grace Center. In addition, MWMO has been monitoring stormwater at a site in the Windom Park neighborhood for a number of years to investigate the quantity and quality of stormwater as it enters Minneapolis from St. Anthony Village and eventually travels to the river near the University of Minnesota. For those wanting more information, MWMO's annual water monitoring report is available at http://mwmo.org/Annual%20Monitoring%20Report%202013.pdf. This project will provide the MWMO an opportunity to test new technologies to remove and manage pollutants before they enter the Mississippi River. The MWMO is also working with the City of Minneapolis in the Northeast area to model how rain water and snow melt moves through the storm pipe system in order to identify and prioritize projects to improve the function of the system. The results of this work could lead to the creation of sub-watershed districts. 

I, my fellow board members and the MWMO staff are pleased to announce that, as part of a larger organizational restructuring of staffing and programs, the organization's Stewardship Fund Grants Program has recently been revised to more closely align with our goals. We felt it was essential that these grants have stronger community connections and that they offer an opportunity for the MWMO to strengthen its relationships with community organizations and entities. Projects can still be done on private property, but the applicant will need to be a non-profit organization, officially recognized neighborhood group, business or professional association, school or local unit of government.

More information about the Stewardship Fund Grants, as well as eligibility guidelines and the application process are available on the MWMO website at www.mwmo.org You can also always feel free to contact my office at 612-673-2201 or kevin.reich@minneapolismn.gov with any questions.


Reich Signature