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How Minneapolis is zoned

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Depressing

I know just enough about zoning to be dangerous, having served as a planning commissioner for several years in Colorado, and this is a depressing map. My personal aggravation with Euclidian (single-purpose) zoning is based on my Shingle Creek Neighborhood, which sports 1,500 lots – all but one of which is zoned R1. I don't know when the neighborhood was surveyed and zoned, but the result is to bring the suburban look of Levittown to a city thousands of miles from the Atlantic coast. There's zero commercial activity in the neighborhood, and the nearest commercial "node" is not even in Minneapolis – it's across Highway 100 in Brooklyn Center. I'm sure Brooklyn Center can use the sales tax revenue as much as Minneapolis, but as a Minneapolis resident, I'd rather my sales tax dollars went to my own city, rather than the neighboring one. The powers-that-be who zoned many of the city's residential neighborhoods appear to have fallen victim to that 1950s suburban attitude that said commercial activity is somehow undesirable in a residential area. The result forces everyone living in my neighborhood to get into the car and drive somewhere – in my own and other cases, to another city – to secure basic services and goods because those things are simply not available in the neighborhood.

It's the worst of the urban world – high taxes, small lots, plenty of noise – with none of the amenities that are supposed to go with city life. Looking at the city as a whole, the same pattern was repeated over and over, no matter what corner outside of downtown is the subject of the conversation. Politically, rezoning is likely out of the question, and will never happen – there will always be vested interests who like things just the way they are at present – but to make Minneapolis a fully-functional city, I'd argue that we ought to go back to the zoning drawing board and start over. Doing so might help drag Minneapolis, kicking and screaming, into the 21st century.

Depressing - agreed

I could not agree more with R.S...

Zoning map of St Paul

Alan,
I love your work in MinnPost in general. As a reader and financial supporter of MinnPost from St. Paul, I request you also do an interactive zoning map of St Paul.
Thanks,
David Washburn