How the ‘creative economy’ is killing culture on Lake Street

On Nov. 2,  a multiracial group of people gathered at Plaza Centenario on the corner of 12th Avenue and Lake Street in Minneapolis. Organized by the Immigrant Movement for Justice, Por Raza and Morena Minnesota, an ofrenda for Day of the Dead was built to honor family members and community leaders throughout the world who passed away due to injustice. The plaza was established by the tireless efforts of local community groups Cuernavaca-Cuernavaca-Axochiapan-Morelos (CCAM), Club Morelos (CM) and Latino artists. Towering above pedestrians stands a bronze statue of Mexican revolutionary leader Emiliano Zapata created by German Michel Leal, an artist from Morelos, Mexico, a sister city of Minneapolis. Continue Reading

Placemaking: loving where you live and why it matters

“What makes people love where they live, and why does it matter?” “What bonds residents to a city and how can a community foster those emotional ties to drive economic success?” Those are questions explored in the Soul of the Community Project, a major initiative of the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation and Gallup pollsters. They were also the focus of several presentations by Dr. Katherine Loflin during her Placemaking Residency in the Twin Cities in early May. Loflin was lead investigator for Soul of the Community while at Knight.                            Among the events held during Loflin’s residency were a presentation and workshop, “Measuring and Understanding Place,” held at the Wilder Foundation, and a walking tour of portions of St. Paul’s Frogtown and Summit-University neighborhoods, combined with a discussion and placemaking brainstorming session. Both took place on May 8. Katherine Loflin (l), Tim Griffin, St. Continue Reading

Soul of University: Walkability workshop focuses on St. Paul’s Frogtown, Summit-University neighborhoods

Placemaking Expert Dr. Katherine Loflin led a Walkability Workshop in St. Paul’s Little Mekong neighborhood through a light drizzle on May 8. Loflin is the lead consultant on the “Soul of the Community,” an investigation on why people love the places they live. Her appearance at the workshop was part of the 2nd Annual Placemaking Residency, and was presented by the District Councils Collaborative and Saint Paul Riverfront Corporation.In this video of the walk around the University/Western Green Line Light Rail station, Loflin speaks about the community’s assets, and how the small touches residents place in their environments signal the community’s hidden strengths. Related stories:• Soul of University: Walkability workshop focuses on St. Paul’s Frogtown, Summit-University neighborhoods• What’s up at Western and Dale? Continue Reading