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Minneapolis mayoral candidate wants futuristic new skyway-like system for bikes, scooters, wheelchairs

Bob Carney Jr., who’s among the 10 challengers running for mayor in Minneapolis against incumbent R.T.

Bob Carney Jr., who’s among the 10 challengers running for mayor in Minneapolis against incumbent R.T. Rybak, offers as one of his planks a plan for a new “Sky-Bi” system — “an all-weather, enclosed bike, Segway, scooter and electric wheelchair skyway system for downtown Minneapolis and nearby neighborhoods.

He has prepared a 9-plus-minute video about the proposal, which, in these times when governments can barely afford to keep the roads and bridges in working condition, seems quite a stretch.

It would be above the existing skyway system and use elevators to get to ground level. He said a special assessment district could be used to pay for it. For the overall cost, Carney offers what he describes as “a very preliminary and possibly somewhat low estimate” of $50 million.

He says the system would connect such places as:

  • The downtown Minneapolis central business district
  • The milling district, including the new Guthrie
  • The University of Minnesota
  • The University of St. Thomas
  • Northwestern University and Augustana
  • The Convention Center and the Metrodome
  • “Twinsville” and Target Field Station (the MTC intermodal transit hub)
  • The Minneapolis Art Institute
  • The Greenway, from the Hiawatha to the new Southwest lines
  • Many ground level links to our park system
  • Ground level links to the Walker Art Center and Sculpture Garden