Ward 3 Update

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St. Paul Ward 3 Update

January 3, 2018  

The Ford Site & Riverview Corridor

Ford Town Hall

This past fall the City Council passed a Ford Zoning and Public Realm Master Plan. The Ford site had previously been zoned industrial, which is one of the most permissive zoning types we have in the City. Rezoning the site to a mixed use development much more closely aligns with the types of development that are occurring in our neighborhood, and throughout the City. Additionally, passing this higher type of zoning now protects our neighborhood from land uses and activities otherwise allowed that are incompatible with what we want to live next to.


Ford also very recently announced that they have placed the land on the market and are seeking bids from a master developer. Once they have selected a master developer, that entity will have to do further environmental and traffic analysis, and because of the City’s Ford Zoning Plan we passed, will also now have to present a detailed, master site plan to the City for approval before it’s able to build on the site. I’m proud of the work we’ve done in developing the Zoning Plan for the site, and look forward to the work we have ahead in reviewing any master site plan that’s proposed.


Additionally, the Riverview Corridor Policy Advisory Committee voted for a modern streetcar route along West 7th as a locally preferred alternative for creating a new transit connection between downtown St. Paul and the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport. This connection would cross the river at Highway 5, but the Committee also voted to ensure that the Riverview Corridor would study connecting this new transit line with the blue line, utilizing the Ford site development.

Public Works truck

Pedestrian and Street Improvements

While it’s always frustrating to face construction related delays, once it’s completed I’m always thankful to be able to walk along a new, safer sidewalk, or drive down a smooth road. This construction season ended with many improvements throughout Ward 3. A few highlights include:


* Highland Parkway, between Snelling Avenue and Hamline Avenue

* Cleveland Avenue, from St. Paul Avenue to Ford Parkway

* Ford Parkway, from the Mississippi River Bridge to Howell Avenue


Additionally, Snelling Avenue received parking bays to prepare for medians being installed next summer, between Highland Parkway and Randolph Avenue. I’m looking forward to the traffic calming effects the medians will have, as well as improved pedestrian safety measures it creates for people trying to cross Snelling Avenue.


Next year there will also be pedestrian safety improvements along Grand Avenue, from Hamline Avenue to Victoria Avenue, and sidewalks will be installed in many areas where they are missing by Expo Elementary. The sidewalks being installed are being paid for by a federal grant the City received for this project, which also means that neighbors will not be assessed for this improvement.

Full Stack Saint Paul

Full Stack Saint Paul

I have done a lot of work on job growth and retention in Saint Paul throughout my time on the City Council, and am particularly proud of the work of the Innovation Cabinet – a group created by myself and Mayor Chris Coleman. As a co-chair of the Innovation Cabinet, I helped lead this group of business and community leaders in a focused effort to identify ways to expand job and business growth in the innovation and technology sectors in St. Paul. As a result of this group’s work, the Cabinet’s action strategy – Full Stack Saint Paul – was released this summer.


Full Stack Saint Paul is a private/public sector collaboration, co-led by the City and the St. Paul Area Chamber of Commerce, that provides a full range of services to help technology and innovation sector businesses start up and scale up in our City. There are already exciting things happening in this area, and I’m excited to continue to help with this effort in 2018.


Happy New Year!

2017 was a busy year for the Ward 3 office, and I wanted to start 2018 by sending out an update with a few highlights from 2017.