City Manager Blog

Each week I send out an FYI Update to City Council and staff on the latest happenings within the City of Maplewood.  I would like to share this information with the residents of Maplewood, as well. 

Follow my blog if you would like to be kept up to date on the behind the scenes happenings within the City. 

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Apr 26

April 26th, 2019

Posted on April 26, 2019 at 1:32 PM by Chad Bergo


Meetings and Announcements:   

KARE 11’s Unzipped Maplewood is already on the web!  It was on the MSN Minn/St Paul local banner…  Heres’ the link to the Kare 11 videos.  There are 4 videos and the article.
Next Council Workshop and Meeting on Monday, May 13.  Workshop start time is TBD.
The Council Calendar has been updated.   

Maplewood Spring Clean Up FYI
The City’s annual Spring Clean Up will be held on Saturday, May 11, 2019, from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Aldrich Arena.  The event provides residents with the opportunity to properly dispose of and recycle items that are not typically accepted through their curbside trash and recycling service
Residents are encouraged to bring a food or cash donation to support Second Harvest Heartland, a local food shelf.  For a full list of items accepted and fees, visit the Maplewood’s website at www.maplewoodmn.gov/cleanups.

City Council and Environmental and Natural Resources Commission volunteers are needed to assist with checking in residents at the entry gate.  This is a great opportunity to meet and greet Maplewood residents, all while helping the environment.  
Maplewood Business Council meetings (MBC) and the St. Paul Chamber Business Education Series schedule of events is listed below:
Updates from Staff and Council:
North End Working Group
The North End Working Group continued its work on creating a unified vision for this important neighborhood in Maplewood Wednesday evening. The Project Team presented near and long-term visions for the North End and asked the Working Group to scrutinize the plans and provide feedback. The group also worked through a series of proposed street cross sections. To wrap up the meeting, the Working Group was introduced to the concept of Design Guidelines. Over the next two months, the Project Team will be drafting the plan and fine-tuning the final version of the vision plan for the North End. An open house for the public is scheduled for May 29 at 5:30 p.m. The Working Group will next meet sometime in June – for the final time – and will make a recommendation to the City Council on the plan and vision for the North End. As a reminder, all meeting materials and presentations can be found at on our website.
Maplewood Business Council – 2020 Census 
The 2020 Census and why it matters was the topic up for discussion Thursday morning at the Maplewood Business Council meeting. Joan Naymark, pictured below, is the founder and Executive Director of Minnesotans for the American Community Survey presented to the Business Council which included a history of the Census and the importance of the 2020 Census to Minnesota. The discussion wrapped up on how businesses and the city can assist in the effort of achieving the goal of a complete count. This event tied in nicely with Ramsey County’s Complete Count Committee meeting Thursday evening. Maplewood has been partnering with Ramsey County on its Complete Count Committee which includes serving on a subcommittee that is targeting renter outreach. - The next Maplewood Business Council meeting is scheduled for June 27 at 7:30 a.m. at the Maplewood Community Center.
Maplewood Loose Lodge
The Maplewood Moose Lodge formally applied this week for a conditional use permit and design review for a proposed new building at 3033 Hazelwood Avenue. The City recently sold the Moose Lodge this vacant land as a result of the City purchasing their existing facility located in the Gladstone neighborhood. The proposed Moose Lodge building will be reviewed by the planning commission and community design review board on May 21 with the city council review tentatively scheduled for June 10.

City Hall Annual Campus Clean-Up
The Green Team hosted the annual City Hall Campus Clean Up on Wednesday, April 24 in honor of Earth Day.  Several City and Ramsey County employees participated in the clean up.  Taking pride in our workplace, getting exercise, all while helping the environment!  
Xcel County Road B Gas Main Replacement:
Xcel Energy will be using a portion of the large vacant area at 2055 White Bear Avenue (on the west side of White Bear Avenue across from the MCC) for a staging area as part of Xcel’s gas main replacement project along County Road B.  The yard will be used to store the 20” steel pipe and gas fittings need for the project along with a job trailer for the project staff.  Xcel plans to put up a chain link fence around the staging area for safety and theft prevention. 
The existing driveway access for 2055 White Bear Avenue will be utilized for all construction activity. Xcel Energy sent a flyer out to the neighborhood letting them know about the staging area and contact information if they have questions (see attached flyer). 

Gold Line CMC Meeting:
Gold Line is hosting a CMC meeting on May 2nd from 2:30 pm to 4:00 pm.  At this meeting the CMC will be considering advancement of the Gold Line BRT project base scope and whether to include the additional project scope requests as part of the Gold Line project.  The additional project scope items that impact Maplewood are the inclusion of pedestrian facilities on the above grade crossing (Century Avenue and McKnight Road) and the at grade crossing of I-94 on the west side of Century Avenue.  All of these improvements are need to make sure Maplewood users have easy and safe access to the new transit stations. 
Minnehaha Road is Open:
A big thank you to all city staff and the project contractor who helped with sewer repair, dealing with the unstable soils, and the rebuilding of the Minnehaha Road.  Minnehaha Road was reopened to traffic on Thursday.

  • Upcoming Meetings and Important Dates: The following are a couple of upcoming meetings and important dates related to the Public Works Department:
  • Tuesday, April 30th – Ramsey County will be hosting an open house meeting to discuss the conversion of Larpenteur Avenue from a 4 lane road to a 3 lane road from Dale Street to I-35E at the Community School of Excellence at 270 Larpenteur Avenue (5:30 p.m. to 7:00 p.m.)
  • Thursday, May 9th – Gold Line project staff will be hosting a CMC meeting to consider advancing the base line project scope and whether to include the additional project scope items.  The meeting will be at the Met Council Chambers, 390 Robert Street, St. Paul, MN (2:30 p.m. to 4:00 p.m.)
  • Friday, May 3rd – Staff will be conducting project bid openings for the Ferndale-Ivy Area Street Improvements Project, city project 18-01 and the Mailand-Crestview Forest Area Pavement Rehabilitation Project, city project 18-27.
  • Monday, May 6th – Staff will be hosting a neighborhood meeting to answer any questions residents have about assessments for the Mailand-Crestview Forest Area Pavement Rehab. 
  • Tuesday, May 7th – Staff will be hosting a neighborhood meeting to answer any questions residents have about assessments for the Ferndale-Ivy Area Street Improvements. 

Easter Eggstravaganza at Edgerton Community Gym/Park
The weather was picture perfect and for the first time in three years we were able to hold our egg hunt outdoors at Edgerton Park! Hundreds gathered in the Community Gym for games, crafts, bounce castle, breakfast goodies and photo ops with the Easter Bunny and then it was time to get on with the hunt! The Bunny led groups of kids ages 3-5 and then 6-8 on a hunt for eggs, candy and special eggs that each child redeemed for additional prizes. The Maplewood Fire Dept. was also there with a firetruck and ambulance and the kids had a blast checking them out. The Mall of America sponsored our event with a drawing that gave away over $450 in prizes to our participants!
Spring Burns at the Preserves
The Parks Department scheduled prescribed burns at two sites this spring -- Fish Creek and Jim’s Prairie.  The Fish Creek burn was conducted Friday, April 19, under perfect weather conditions.  Contractor Natural Resources Restoration burned about ½ the bluff top prairie.   We break our larger sites into two or three units and burn those alternate years to lessen impacts on pollinators.  The prairie at Fish Creek was seeded four years ago and has established beautifully. 

Frog Monitoring
The frogs have been calling for a few weeks now and Maplewood Citizen Science monitors are ready for them.  The Nature Center hosted its annual training session for frog monitors in early April.  The City has four frog routes, each with 10 stops near lakes or wetlands.  Volunteers are gathering frog data from 40 Maplewood wetlands.  They monitor after dark and identify frogs by their calls.  This data has been tracked for several years, many have confirmed water quality improvements over time.  Over the course of the season we typically hear 8 of the 9 frog and toad species that are native to the metro area.

Maplewood Featured on KARE 11-TV
This Friday, KARE 11-TV‘s morning show featured Maplewood in its Unzipped segment. It gave us an opportunity to highlight the city’s assets, like our parks, open spaces and Nature Center, as well as great places to eat. It also provided an opportunity to positively frame some of our challenges, such as developments at Myth and the Maplewood Mall. 

News From Print and Other Partners
 https://www.twincities.com/2019/04/20/man-shot-in-dennys-parking-lot-in-maplewood/  Reference:  Mike Shortreed

Have a great weekend.  Hopefully the snow will stay south.  –Mike