Nonprofit, nonpartisan journalism. Supported by readers.


Northeast Minneapolis residents miffed as BNSF expands railway into their backyards

REUTERS/Rick Wilking

Northeast Minneapolis residents getting railroaded… literally. In the Star Tribune, Eric Roper writes, “A quiet street in northeast Minneapolis has been upended by BNSF Railway’s sudden plans to expand its tracks closer to houses there, simultaneously leveling a thick tree buffer that once shielded residents from the 92 trains — several carrying crude oil — that pass through every day. … It has grown even more unsettling for some residents who returned home last week to find surveyor stakes in their yards, signifying where the railroad says garages, fences and trees are encroaching on its property. The railroad wants those residents, located near N.E. Washington Street and Lowry Avenue, to enter into long-term agreements such as leases if they want to keep using the land.”

Kind words for retiring Rep. John Kline from people who, from a strictly partisan perspective, you might not expect. First, in Ed Week, NEA government relations director Mary Kusler: “We’re sad to see Chairman Kline go. He’s been a pragmatic leader that’s been unafraid to talk about the importance of our public education system in this country and the important role that the federal government has in that system. Granted he would like less of a federal role than currently exists, but overall he has really been a champion.” And then, from the top Democrat himself, President Obama (quoted in a Rachel Stassen-Berger blog post for the Pioneer Press): “John’s never been afraid to stand up for what he believes in, and as the Chairman of the House Education Committee, he’s shown a willingness to work together with anybody – Republican or Democrat – who has the best interests of our students at heart.”

Speaking of strange political bedfellows — or whatever the opposite of that is — Rep. Betty McCollum is under attack in new ads paid for by… a labor union? The Pioneer Press’ David Montgomery explains, “UNITE HERE, a labor union representing primarily service workers, is spending $10,000 on radio ads criticizing McCollum’s support of the Tribal Labor Sovereignty Act, which exempts Native American tribes and tribal casinos from federal gaming laws. … The ad suggests that McCollum’s support for the bill was payback for more than $120,000 in political contributions she received last election from tribes. … McCollum has also been heavily funded by organized labor. According to, she received $169,250 from organized labor last election — including $2,500 from UNITE HERE.

Foodservice Equipment & Supplies magazine (we’re regular readers) has a big spread highlighting the relatively brand new Surly brewery in Minneapolis. Contributing Editor Donna Boss takes a deep dive into all aspects of the brewery’s design, from the materials used to fit the existing neighborhood character to the thousands of feet of tubing required to serve up fresh beer at multiple tap locations. And there are some great photographs to boot.

In other news…

Minneapolis’ Aqua nightclub is under fire for not paying royalties for songs it plays. That’d be like copying excerpts from a bunch of other people’s news stories and … uh… nevermind. [City Pages]

About time: “Coming Soon: Oude Oak, MN’s First All-Sour Brewery” [Mpls/St. Paul]

Minneapolis native Sophie Harris is spreading the bike love in New Orleans. [Star Tribune]

Navy’s next littoral combat ship will be named “Minneapolis/St. Paul.” [Department of Defense] 

Great Minnesota Get-Together indeed:

Fear the gopher chipmunk. [SB Nation]

Comments (5)

  1. Submitted by Bill Lindeke on 09/04/2015 - 02:58 pm.

    Waste of money

    McCollum’s seat is more than solid. She’s not going anywhere.

  2. Submitted by Bill Willy on 09/06/2015 - 10:58 am.

    Matching Fair outfits: Almost, but not quite

    Nit picking, for sure, but (predictably?) Keith is wearing a t-shirt under his p-shirt. A fair number of people do that (mostly conservative guys, it seems), but given the primary idea behind short-sleeved max-causal (but NOT common t-) shirts with token collars and buttons is to have something socially acceptable to wear in public in heat, I’ve never understood the layering thing. I’ve heard the “perspiration barrier” rationale (unsightly underarm moon prevention, primarily), but I’m pretty sure any true fashionista would politely, but quickly, turn away.

    Though it may seem a trivial thing, I’m not sure I could bring myself to vote for anyone (regardless of party affiliation) that wears what amounts to two t-shirts during the warmest time of the year.

    • Submitted by Dan Berg on 09/07/2015 - 09:09 am.


      Well the perspiration barrier aspect is more than just aesthetics in the moment. The inexpensive t-shirt also acts as a sacrificial layer so that the out shirt lasts longer. The other reason I personally do it is because I never tuck in a short sleeved shirt (that is the part that makes it warmer for me) so it is nice to be able to tuck in the t-shirt.

      And yes, it is an incredibly trivial thing to even consider as a reason for how you vote.

    • Submitted by Matt Haas on 09/07/2015 - 02:17 pm.


      Liberal here, NOT wearing an undershirt just seems…weird. Generational preference perhaps? I’m 36, virtually everyone I’m aware of in my age cohort through the years does the same. Could be regional too I suppose, I grew up a small towner, we’ll say fashion and style trends were not exactly refined. I do relent for those new fangled golf shirts, while golfing only, functional and all.

  3. Submitted by Richard O'Neil on 09/07/2015 - 02:22 pm.

    You’re right Willy. You are nit picking.

Leave a Reply