MASSAGE ROOM: The Armatage Neighborhood Association (ANA) sent a letter to William O’Neill, the owner of the building that houses The Massage Room, 5410 Penn Ave., a parlor that has been under suspicion of prostitution. In the letter, president Noah Schuchman asked for the business to be evicted. "Residents of the Armatage neighborhood do not tolerate prostitution and we have great concerns about properties and property owners who do," he wrote.
Around this time, the Massage Room closed and O’Neill wrote back, "We share your concern for keeping the Armatage neighborhood safe, and wholeheartedly agree that what took place at the Massage Room was completely unacceptable."
ELECTIONS: At the East Calhoun Community Organization’s (ECCO) annual meeting this month, board members Tim Prinsen and Carrie Menard were reelected. Nancy Ward and Anne McLaughlin were elected as alternates.
ELECTIONS: The East Harriet Farmstead Neighborhood Association (EHFNA) held board elections at its annual meeting this month. New members are Patty Sellie, Michael Dietrich, Douglas Stewart, Pam Meier and James Thorson. Chris Gallaty is an alternate.
ZONING: East Isles Residents Association (EIRA) discussed the growing concern of its zoning committee that some homeowners are neglecting to maintain high exterior standards.
An Oct. 23 meeting with Amanda Arnold, Minneapolis principal city planner, will focus on implementing guidelines for historic preservation in the neighborhood, in addition to a course of action for how the neighborhood should precede with homes in shambles.
NEW COORDINATOR: At their Oct. 10 board meeting, the FNA hired Tara Kumar as their new coordinator. She will replace Rhea Sullivan, who was with the organization for three years and left to pursue other career opportunities. Kumar has experience with website administration and grant writing, which the FNA cited as necessary skills for the position.
POSTCARDS: The FNA has a large supply of postcards featuring renderings of the neighborhood by local artist Darylee Michlink for sale at Pershing Park. Call 922-3106 for more information.
NRP FUNDING: A potential drop in funding for phase II of the Neighborhood Revitalization Program (NRP) may prevent the Kenwood Isles Area Association (KIAA) from honoring its financial commitment to a Northeast housing project.
Vice Chair Pat Scott said KIAA planned a contribution to the Clare Apartments project, housing for the formerly homeless diagnosed with HIV/AIDS. That contribution was threatened by a proposed cut to phase II funding, from $85,600 to about $54,000.
LIGHT-RAIL TRANSIT: A neighborhood meeting to discuss the potential impact of a light rail transit (LRT) line through Kenwood is 6:30–8 p.m. Oct. 25 at the Kenwood Recreation Center, 2101 W. Franklin Ave.
The meeting is limited to Kenwood residents only so that the focus remains on the local impact of LRT, not larger issues of mass transit.
HOME SECURITY: The Nov. 5 meeting of the KIAA board of directors will feature a home security presentation from Minneapolis police.
The meeting begins at 7 p.m. and the presentation is scheduled for 7:45–8:30 p.m. All neighborhood residents are invited to attend.
NRP: The Kingfield Neighborhood Association (KFNA) board discussed a possible reduction in phase II Neighborhood Revitalization Program (NRP) funding and decided to begin prioritizing its initiatives should there be a shortfall. The task of prioritization will be taken up at a future meeting.
FARMERS’ MARKET: The board approved hiring St. Paul-based Management Assistance Program (MAP) for Nonprofits to conduct a farmers’ market feasibility study for no more than $2,500. The Kingfield Farmers’ Market is struggling financially and the board is wondering if it can survive in the future, especially if NRP funding dries up.
CREEKSIDE COMMONS: The Linden Hills Neighborhood Council (LHNC) sent a letter to the Tangletown Neighborhood Association supporting the construction of Creekside Commons, a 30-unit affordable housing complex proposed for 54th Street and Stevens Avenue. "The lack of affordable housing is affecting workers, senior citizens, and young people — many of whom are finding they cannot afford a home or an apartment, especially in Southwest Minneapolis," read the letter. "We hope that in making your decision [to support or disapprove of the project], you carefully consider the greater needs of our communities."
ALMSTED’S: Lunds grocery store offered jobs to 27 of the 35 employees who worked at the now closed Almsted’s Sunnyside Market on 38th Street and Sunnyside Avenue. Twenty-five workers accepted with 18 people going to the 50th and France location, six at Byerly’s in St. Louis Park and one employee in
GO LOCAL: LHNC members have passed out more than 350 "Local" stickers and 100 fabric shopping bags to residents since the campaign began in mid-September.
MONEY FOR TREES: The Hendry Family Foundation has offered to match up to $14,000 of money to go toward planting trees and treating diseased elms. Additionally, the foundation is giving the council $1,000 to fundraise for the project.
GHOST TROLLEY: The Como-Harriet Streetcar Line will be operating from 6–9 p.m. on Oct. 25–28 in honor of Halloween. The theme this year is "Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Wye." The trolley will start at the Linden Hills station near 42nd and Queen and costs $2 for kids under 12 and $4 for adults.
PARADE STADIUM TASK FORCE UPDATE: At an Oct. 2 meeting, Marty Broan, a member of the Lowry Hill Residents Inc. (LHRI) board, reported that the Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board denied the task force’s request for an Environmental Assessment Worksheet (EAW) on the Parade Stadium project since all work on the project has been suspended through 2008.
Despite the fact that their request was denied, Broan felt that the task force’s objective of bringing transparency to the Parade Stadium project and allowing for residents’ input in the final design had been achieved. The Park Board assured the task force that when the project is approved they would conduct an EAW and convene some form of Citizens Advisory Council (CAC).
CITIZENS PARTICIPATION: The board approved sending a letter to the Park Board commissioners asking them not to amend the Citizens Participation Ordinance. The Park Board is considering an amendment that would postpone convening a CAC until after a project has been approved and funded. The board felt that this would render citizen involvement virtually meaningless.
NEIGHBORHOOD REVITALIZATION PROGRAM (NRP): The board agreed to adopt the following process to access and use its NRP funds: consider proposals on a pipeline basis (monthly or bimonthly); work with other LHRI committees to ensure their projects fit within NRP’s budget, legal requirements and strategic plan; make recommendations to the full board on motions presented by committees; and assign the NRP Committee chair to act as the contact with the city of Minneapolis NRP staff.
NRP PHASE II: The board approved contracting all its NRP Phase II housing funds as a loan to the Nonprofits Assistance Fund for use with their Affordable Housing Working Capital Program. The loan has a three-year term and would earn LHRI one and a half percent interest.
LATE NIGHT DRIVE-THRU: Later drive-thru hours for the Wendy’s restaurant at 325 E. Franklin Ave. has received support from the Stevens Square Community Organization (SSCO).
The city’s Planning Commission was set to review Oct. 15 the restaurant’s request conditional-use permit to stay open an hour later. The proposed new hours of operation are 6 a.m.–12 a.m. Sunday through Thursday and 6 a.m.–1 a.m. Friday and Saturday.
The Whittier Alliance board voted to deny support for Wendy’s application at its September meeting, in part because the restaurant is in a pedestrian overlay district designed to discourage automotive uses. The restaurant is located in Whittier, but on the border of both neighborhoods.
NRP ELECTOR NAMED: SSCO board member Miranda Wilson was selected as the neighborhood’s elector for the Neighborhood Revitalization Program Policy Board.
Wilson will vote Nov. 15 on behalf of her neighborhood to elect new policy board members.
CREEKSIDE COMMONS: The Windom Community Council (WCC) has approved a letter to be sent the Minneapolis Planning Commission and Board of Adjustment regarding Creekside Commons, a 30-unit affordable housing designed for the corner of 54th Street and Stevens Avenue, which abuts Windom. "The three buildings currently on the block are a maximum of three stories, and contain no more than 12–21 units in each building," read the letter. "We support the addition of another building of this scale." The council supports workforce housing, but they don’t feel that the developer should need to seek parking or setback variances.
ELECTIONS: At their Oct. 11 meeting, the WCC re-elected two board members and hoped to elect neighbors to fill the remaining six open seats, but no one volunteered.
— Jake Weyer, Mary O’Regan, Dylan Thomas, Alison Fiebig and Sarah Phemister
Southwest neighborhood group meeting times
Armatage Neighborhood Association (ANA): Board meets 3rd Tuesday monthly at Armatage Park, 57th & Russell.
Bryn Mawr Neighborhood Association (BMNA): Board meets 2nd Wednesday monthly at Bryn Mawr School, 252 Upton Ave. S.
Calhoun Area Residents Action Group (CARAG) meeting: Board meets 3rd Tuesday monthly at Bryant Square Park, 3101 Bryant Ave. S.
Cedar-Isles-Dean Neighborhood Association (CIDNA) meeting: Board meets every 1st Tuesday at Jones-Harrison Residence, 3700 Cedar Lake Ave.
East Calhoun Community Organization (ECCO): Board meets 1st Thursday monthly at St. Mary’s Greek Orthodox Church, 3450 Irving Ave. S.
East Harriet Farmstead Neighborhood Association (EHFNA): Board meets 1st Wednesday monthly at Lyndale Farmstead Park Building, 3900 Bryant Ave.
East Isles Residents Association (EIRA): Board meets 1st Tuesday monthly at Trinity Community Church, 1430 W. 28th St.
Fulton Neighborhood Association (FNA): Board meets 2nd Wednesday monthly at Pershing Park, 3523 W. 48th St.
Kenny Neighborhood Association (KNA): Board meets 3rd Tuesday monthly at Coldwell Banker Burnet Building, 5516 Lyndale Ave. S.
Kenwood Isles Area Association (KIAA): Board meets 1st Monday monthly at Kenwood Neighborhood Center, 2101 W. Franklin Ave.
Kingfield Neighborhood Association (KFNA): Board meets 2nd Wednesday monthly at Martin Luther King Jr. Park, 41st & Nicollet.
Linden Hills Neighborhood Council (LHiNC): Board meets 1st Tuesday monthly at Linden Hills Park, 3100 W. 43rd St.
Lowry Hill Residents Inc. (LHRI): Board meets 1st Tuesday monthly at Kenwood Neighborhood Center, 2101 W. Franklin Ave.
Lowry Hill East (Wedge): Board meets 3rd Wednesday monthly at Jefferson Elementary School, 1200 W. 26th St.
Lyndale Neighborhood Association (LNA): Board meets 4th Monday monthly at Painter Park, 34th & Lyndale.
Lynnhurst Neighborhood Association (LYNAS): Board meets 2nd Thursday monthly at Lynnhurst Community Center, 50th & West Minnehaha Parkway.
Stevens Square Community Organization (SSCO): Board meets 2nd Thursday monthly at 1707 3rd Ave. S. in the community room.
Tangletown Neighborhood Association (TNA): Board meets 3rd Monday monthly at Fuller Park, 4800 Grand Ave.
West Calhoun Neighborhood Council: Board meets 2nd Monday monthly at Whole Foods (classroom), 3060 Excelsior Blvd.
Whittier Alliance: Board meets 4th Thursday monthly at the Whittier Community School, 2620 Grand Ave.
Windom Community Council: Board meets 2nd Thursday monthly at Windom Community Center, 5821 Wentworth Ave.
For more information about Southwest neighborhood organizations, go to www.swjournal.com and click on "Resources."