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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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Oct 31

October 28, 2022

Posted on October 31, 2022 at 10:19 AM by Chad Bergo

COMMUNICATIONS AND NEWS FROM THE WEEK: October 28, 2022

Meetings and Announcements:   
The next regular City Council Meeting will be on Monday, November 14th.  We will be considering approval of the Reuter Walton project.  We expect that there will be a large turnout from the neighborhood.

We had an EDA meeting scheduled at 6:30 to discuss the Reuter Walton TIF term sheet and project but after speaking with Mayor Abrams we realized that we should not talk about financing plans until we know if the project is approved. We will move the EDA meeting to the November 28th meeting at 5:30 pm.

• On November 28th we will also have a workshop at 6pm to discuss Purple Line engagement process.

PARK AND NATURAL RESOURCES
Century College Service Learning Project at Edgerton Community Garden
October brought the end to the garden season at the Edgerton Community Garden.  Gardeners harvested their garden plants and cleared their plots.  Soon after, a group of Century College biology students working on their service learning project helped with year-end garden clean up.  Eight bright and inspiring college students and their two professors picked up trash, weeded, straightened the solarization plastic (in place to kill weeds), removed old signage, and other garden tasks during the two-hour service learning session.  Thank you to Century College and their students for their years of service projects in Maplewood! 

Soil Sampling
In the Spring, Ramsey County delivered a load of compost for gardeners at the Edgerton Community Garden.  They offer this service to community gardens and urban farms in the county.  This year some of the urban farms placed large amounts of the compost on their gardens.  The gardens proved unsuccessful as the compost was found to have high amounts of soluble salt.  To ensure soil health in the County, the University Minnesota Extension Service is now collaborating with the Ramsey/Washington Energy and Environment to offer soil testing to community gardens and urban farms that have received compost from their site.  This week Natalie Hoidal, Extension Educator, was collected soil samples from Edgerton Community Garden.  She will test the soil for pH, texture, phosphorus, potassium, and soluble salt levels.  The results will be shared with the gardeners and a webinar will be held to discuss what they are seeing in the gardens across the County.  Ramsey County Master Gardeners will be available to work with gardeners on a soil health plan for the gardens. 

4H Program Partnership Update
Parks and Natural Resources is excited to grow our partnership with Ramsey County 4H by hosting a number of their nature/outdoor based learning experiences on site at the Nature Center. These classes are for grades K-5 and held on ISD 622 school out days from 9am-12pm. The first class, “Nature Journals and Sensory Tour” was held on Friday October 21 and the kids had a blast! We are looking forward to the next session on November 8th that will focus on fishing and the aquatic food chain.

• Program Registration Link: https://maplewoodmn.gov/971/Program-Events?fbclid=IwAR0wY-Ex2nsuPA4P8B8Dso3yA41X6rsybeV66ZLwL767dLZhyvcJaz4OoY0

• Ramsey County 4H Facebook Post: https://www.facebook.com/RamseyCounty4H/posts/pfbid0W2x5cXUswRVNb2cXFTuFTSHR9LpfAto7Nxx2gGHBtmx2ExCEpCokZfgpJ8fmPEuDl

COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT"
Potential Townhome Development on 11th Avenue – ***Open House Date Change***
In last week’s FYI, information was relayed regarding Kennedy Property Development’s proposal to amend the comprehensive plan for the vacant parcel of property located on 11th Ave in Maplewood – north of Cub Foods – from Commercial to High-Density Residential. The planned open house is going to be held one week later than originally planned and will now be on Friday, November 4, 2022, from 4-8 p.m. at 4165 Old Sibley Memorial Hwy in Eagan. Attendees will have the opportunity to walk through and tour an existing project the applicant developed. 

IN THE NEWS
Maplewood City Council withdraws support for Purple Line City wants more community engagement, data on public transit. By Janet Moore (https://www.startribune.com/janet-moore/6370516/) Star Tribune OCTOBER 25, 2022 — 5:40PM The Maplewood City Council has withdrawn its support for the proposed Purple Line bus-rapid transit project until more study can be done to determine the city's best public transit option. Monday's vote, which was unanimous, came after council members raised questions (https://www.startribune.com/maplewood-considers-withdrawing-support-for-bus[1]rapid-transit-line/600214627/?refresh=true) in the past month about the route of the Purple Line through the city and whether the COVID-19 pandemic has significantly changed ridership patterns on public transportation, given the rise of remote work. 10/27/22, 10:18 AM Maplewood City Council withdraws support for Purple Line https://www.startribune.com/maplewood-city-council-withdraws-support-for-purple-line-seeks-more-time-to-study-transit-options/600218763/ 2/4 Mayor Marylee Abrams said that while she supports public transit, "The question is, what transit do we need? We need to figure that out. We need data. I haven't seen any data at all." The resolution adopted by the City Council calls for the Purple Line's timeline to be extended to allow further community engagement. It was unclear how the Maplewood vote might affect the future of the Purple Line; consent among cities served by the line isn't needed to build such a project. Formerly called the Rush Line, the Purple Line has been in the works for two decades. It was initially planned to link the downtowns of St. Paul and White Bear Lake, via St. Paul's East Side, Maplewood, Vadnais Heights, Gem Lake and White Bear Township. The project has an estimated price tag of $475 million, to be paid for with federal and Ramsey County funding. But earlier this year, White Bear Lake withdrew its support for the 15-mile line. Now, planners with the Metropolitan Council, which will build and operate the line, are looking at three possible options for the line's northern terminus: the Maplewood Mall Transit Center; Vadnais Heights, near County Road E or Willow Lake Boulevard; or Century College (https://www.startribune.com/purple-line-bus-rapid-transit-could-stop[1]at-century-college/600185464/) , which straddles White Bear Lake and Mahtomedi. Link to article below.

https://www.kare11.com/article/money/economy/maplewood-withdraws-support-for-purple-line-seeks-post-pandemic-ridership-data/89-d064f680-ec72-4526-9725-c66764330aa3 

Please also note that city offices will be closed on Friday, November 11th in observation of Veteran’s Day.

Melinda