Tag Archives: transportation

How is the price of gas changing your life?

As the price of gas keeps escalating, I’m starting to see a lot more bikes downtown, including more weird ones like the Xtracycle that I blogged about last week.

bike rack Giant Revive E-Go electric cycle
Left: the crowded bike rack in front of the Goodbye Blue Monday on Tues. morn around 7 am.
Center: my wife’s Giant Revive, a super comfy bike (lumbar support!) for around-town/bike trail riding
Right: an E-Go electric cycle

As for how the price of gas has been changing my life:

  • I’ve been taking the Revive to get to my morning coffeehouse offices in the past week, once I figured out how to easily haul my laptop on it.
  • We’ve gone to two movies in the past 3 weeks, both at Northfield’s Southgate theater instead of driving to the Lakeville 21.

How about you?

Let’s Stage a “Sit-Out”

Sit-inI’ve had it.

As I mentioned at the tail end of our podcast a couple of weeks ago, I’m thinking that a little civil disobedience might be in order in re the outdoor dining situation in Northfield.

Let’s pick a date and stage a “sit-out”! The restaurants in town could put out tables and chairs, citizens would be encouraged to bring their lawn chairs downtown and we’d fill up the sidewalks. If we got enough of the businesses to participate, I doubt that the City Council would hold their liquor license renewals hostage, or whatever consequences are being dreamed up for violating our current prohibitions.

Friends, Romans, Countrymen….. lend me your chairs. Any takers? Suggested dates?

A new way to bike your groceries, kid, spouse, computer, laundry, kitchen sink around town

Xtracycle Xtracycle
Someone has a new Xtracycle (sport utility bicycle) here in Northfield:

Imagine your favorite bike, with the rear wheel stretched out behind the seat, a big, stable platform for a load or a passenger, and elegant saddlebags on either side that are expandable when you need them and are cleanly out of the way when you don’t. Best of all, your bike is still lightweight and fast, and because the load is centered between your two wheels, the whole package handles with ease. Suddenly you have much less need or desire to drive around town for your errands. Picture this: a breezy unloaded ride to your favorite grocery store, coasting reliably around corners; arriving ahead of traffic; parking at the rack directly in front of the entrance; shopping and easily loading your four bags of groceries; then pedaling home, care-free on a bike that handles just as swiftly now that it’s loaded.

Traffic Fatality Near NHS

Some very sad news – a pedestrian was killed, and another injured, this morning at the intersection of Hwy 246 (Division Street) and Jefferson Parkway. Names have not yet been released. Both the Northfield News and the StarTribune have reported on the incident.

According to the Northfield News,

The intersection is under review as part of a $30,000 Safe Routes to Schools grant awarded last month to the city and its Non-motorized Transportation Task Force. The task force, in its grant application, said that the intersection, which is adjacent to three schools, is unsafe.

I’m sure Bill Ostrem and others on the Task Force will keep us apprised of the developments. It is truly sad that it often seems to take a tragedy of some magnitude to get people’s attention about pedestrian and bicycle safety, and make them realize that streets aren’t just for cars and trucks.

Podcast: Ray Cox on the transportation plan

Ross Currier and Ray Cox Map: Northfield Industrial Corporation (NIC) Transportation Task Force Cover - Northfield Industrial Corporation (NIC) Transportation Task Force

Ross’ brother-in-law (AKA Ray Cox) was our guest yesterday, talking all-things transportation.

Ray was a member of the Northfield Industrial Corporation (NIC) Transportation Task Force back in July, 2000 when they created a report titled A Recommendation for Improvements in Safety, Access, and Quality of Life Issues for Northfield Transportation.

I have the original document and plan to scan it into a PDF that I’ll post here later this week.

Update 2/23: Here’s the 24-page scanned PDF of the NIC report:

Cover - Northfield Industrial Corporation (NIC) Transportation Task Force

Click play to listen. 30 minutes.

Our radio show/podcast, Locally Grown, usually airs Wednesdays at 5:30 PM on KYMN 1080 AM. You can also subscribe to the podcast feed, or subscribe with iTunes. We seek your comments and suggestions.