Who Are These Groups Part 3; The Bottineau Boulevard Partnership

January 7, 2012 at 3:00 pm 2 comments

As we continue to examine these third party groups funded by your tax dollars, we now come to our favorite; The Bottineau Boulevard Partnership.  Here is how they describe themselves on their website at http://bottineaupartnership.org/

Local public officials and business leaders formed the Bottineau Boulevard Partnership in 2000 to mobilize resources and offer civic leadership to guide the redevelopment of the Bottineau Corridor (County Road 81).  A new, high quality transit investment has been a consistent priority for the Partnership.  Hennepin County is currently leading an Alternatives Analysis to study Light Rail Transit and other options for this Corridor, which will narrow the transitway options and may decide a preferred alternative. 

So business leaders and government are teaming up to “invest” or as we call it, spend, for transit. Usually when business and government get together to do something, the taxpayers are the loser. And, yes they are pushing light rail but they are also pushing something else called Transit Oriented Development;

Transit investments can stimulate new forms of investment and development that might otherwise not occur.  If carefully planned, transit oriented development, or “TOD” can offer walkable, mixed-use development options that complement a transit line and revitalize communities. 

What is TOD?  Transit Oriented Development is considered to be more compact development within easy walking distance of transit stations (about ½ mile) that contain a mix of uses such as housing, jobs, shops, restaurants and entertainment.  TOD creates walkable, sustainable communities that provide more housing and transportation choices for people of all ages. 

Let us interpret for you; they want to build light rail and then use that as an excuse to redevelop.  And notice other parts of the plan; they want  walkable and sustainable communities within 1/2 mile of public transit. In other words they want to cram as many people and businesses in as small of an area as possible in an effort to force them to take public transit. We are already seeing this. In Crystal the city “loaned” Northwest Family Physicians $400,000 to move right on the northeast corner of Bottineau Blvd or as we call it highway 81 and Bass Lake Road.  They approved a regional trial to run alongside highway 81 to accommodate all those non-existent walkers and bikers. The city plans for high density housing to replace Thrift Way grocery store. They also just re-zoned the soon-to-be closed Cavanaugh School building to be “high density senior living.” This is all in preparation for light rail. Here are some more “ideas.”

Pursuing Bottineau TOD will be a process that involves both dreaming and hard work.  These design images may help people to get excited about the possibilities–and to think about planning issues such as station layout, parking, market realities, and phasing of development. It is not likely that the introduction of light rail will change these areas overnight. Development happens over a long period of time and a sustained commitment to planning and implementation of changes is important for success. These images help to communicate how the stations and surrounding areas might change over time. 

Dreaming and hard work? Is not likely these changes will happen overnight? In other words, we will be working on highway 81 forever!! Let’s take a look at some their dreaming might look like in our neighborhood;

Hubbard Marketplace Station Area Case Study, Robbinsdale

This case study of the Hubbard Marketplace Station Area considers ways the land uses around the transit station could change with the construction of a park and ride that also serves downtown Robbinsdale and with the reconfiguration of the block to the east of the station.

The view from 42nd Avenue and West Broadway looking

Phase One: A park and ride?

Phase Two: One-story retail + street trees?

Phase Three: Two stories of housing or office above?

Housing or office above retail? Would you want to live there? Do you want Robbinsdale to be even more crammed than it already is?

Now who is a part of this group? Well here is a list;

North Hennepin Community College
Dawn Reimer, CFO

North Memorial Medical Center
Jerry Pedlar

Target Corporation
Irene Quarshie, Director, Civic Affairs

Wells Fargo Bank
Ellen McInnis, Director, Minnesota Government Relations

City of Brooklyn Park
Mayor Jeffrey Lunde

City of Crystal
Council Member Mark Hoffman

City of Maple Grove
Mayor Mark Steffenson

City of Minneapolis
Council Member Barb Johnson

City of Robbinsdale
Mayor Mike Holtz

Metropolitan Council
Adam Harrington

Hennepin County
Commissioner Mike Opat

North Metro Mayors Association
Phil Cohen

So you can see it is a who’s who of local government along with Target, Wells Fargo, the county, the hospital, the met council, and the community college all working together to force this on us! And when did Mark Hoffman replace Mayor ReNae Bowman? Mayor Bowman gave up power?

And who funds this organization? These is no transparency whatsoever on this website (surprise, surprise)! We know the city of Crystal pays the BBP $4,125 a year so you can take a good guess as to how much your city is paying.

So this is YET ANOTHER unconstitutional third party group that spends your money but gives you no voice! You have to love government!


Entry filed under: Brooklyn Park, County, Crystal, Hennepin, Robbinsdale.

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2 Comments Add your own

  • 1. numbersguy  |  January 7, 2012 at 3:21 pm

    Thanks for continuing to EXPOSE this!!!!!

  • 2. wants2know  |  January 7, 2012 at 4:03 pm

    There are 4 Bottineau Transitway Open Houses coming up soon.
    Jan.23, 4:30 to 6:30 pm at Theodore Wirth Chalet, 1301 Theodore Wirth Pkwy, Minneapolis

    Jan. 24, 6:00 to 8:00 pm Brooklyn Park City Hall,
    5200 85th Ave N BP.

    Jan. 25, 5:30 to7:30 pm Urban Research and Outreach/Engagement
    Center 2001 Plymouth Ave N Minneapolis.

    Jan. 31, 6:00 to 8:00 pm, Robbinsdale City Hall, 4100 Lakeview Ave. N

    A “scoping” booklet on the project is available at


    Comments can be emailed to project manager Brent Rusco at

    His mailing address is 701 4th Ave.S Suite 400 Minneapolis,MN 55415.
    This is your opportunity to review this project and give your opinion of it. Please take advantage of these opportunities and speak up.


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