Plaza del Sol: Creating community in a St. Paul market square

Located at 990 Payne Avenue, in a spot that was formerly Borgstrom’s pharmacy, Plaza Del Sol offers visitors a new shopping experience. Owner Sonia Ortega has renovated the 40,000 square foot property to create space for independently owned businesses, including Señor Sol Mexican Grill and Tazmal Pupuseria. In addition to these restaurants, the Santa Fe coffee shop offers drinks that are unavailable elsewhere, such as a popular sour, spicy mango smoothie. Other businesses include a document translator, two clothing boutiques, and a jewelry store, and Romeo and Julieta Salon.


Internet fast-lane bypassing rural Minnesota?

The issue of net neutrality has dominated headlines recently, and the outcome of this ongoing debate could have profound implications for the expansion of high speed internet into rural areas of Minnesota. Monopoly power among internet providers has allowed them to raise prices and offer faster content delivery to select customers, creating an internet “fast lane”.


Building Trades unions combine efforts to pass responsible contractor legislation

The Carpenters Union was a leading proponent of responsible contractor legislation. (Photo courtesy of North Country Carpenter)

When it comes to public construction projects in Minnesota, the law says that the lowest responsible bidder gets the job. What constitutes a “responsible bidder” wasn’t clearly defined in the law, however.


Africa is open for business: Forum touted benefits of investing in East Africa

Liberata Mulamula (l) and Tom Gitaa (Photos by Charles Hallman)

Several African-born persons “pitched” their native lands to Minnesotans at a recent African business forum. Commodities, vegetables and machinery are presently the three top products exported from Minnesota. Trade officials agreed that more business exchange and investment in many African nations would be welcome and profitable for all concerned.


What would Jesus vape? Will manufacturer that helped write Melin's bill get one of two spots?

Readers may remember that in Pass the stealth dutchies: Melin disses former allies in pediatric cannabis Facebook group, Bluestem reported that the Hibbing DFLer warned members of a closed pediatric cannabis Facebook group against those medical cannabis advocates who might favor full-scale legalization of medical marijuana.


West Bank and Stadium Village business groups plan to use city grants to engage neighbors and capitalize on the light rail opening

Owner of the Stadium Village Dairy Queen/Orange Julius Chris Ferguson discusses the Green Line light rail at the Stadium Village Commercial Association meeting May 21. The organization received a $15,000 city grant to help attract light rail riders to the area. (Photo by Chelsea Gortmaker)

Two University of Minnesota-area business districts are now planning for how they’ll use thousands of new city dollars.


Minneapolis development slowed by disagreement, stakeholders look to change city code and increase collaboration

When it comes to new development, neighborhoods, developers and the city of Minneapolis aren’t always on the same page.


Food, farming, and football connected by research

For most Twin Cities residents it's easy to overlook the close ties between the University of Minnesota and the state's small towns. If you take a second to think about it though, the connection is clear. As a land grant university, they're closely related through agricultural research, football, and a number of other fields of study.


Cable policy and the impact of policy on investment: Promote competition or utility?

Watching the Minnesota Broadband Task Force gets me wondering about the impact policy can and does have on broadband expansion. So I was delighted when someone sent me an article on the impact of policy on cable expansion (The Cable Guys Need to Come Up with a Better Argument). The article is interesting – but for me the most interesting was a graph that outlines potential cause and effect of policy on cable investment…

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