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Sunday Poll: Which Northside Light Rail Alternative Alignment Is Your Favorite?

July 8, 2018 Featured, Public Transit, Sunday Poll, Transportation Comments Off on Sunday Poll: Which Northside Light Rail Alternative Alignment Is Your Favorite?
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Today’sSunday Poll is a little different than most, instead of agreeing or disagreeing with a statement you’ll be asked your favorite of two alternative routes for the Northside alignment of  proposed new light rail line.

Below is the email I received last week: about the Northside-Southside light rail project:

After a year and a half of data analysis, study and public feedback from over 60 presentations, meetings and open houses, the Northside-Southside Study team is releasing our recommended first phase project alignment for the City of St. Louis. We knew the best route for Northside-Southside should align with community investment strategies, serve area neighborhoods and residents, and provide pedestrian access to the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA) West campus.

Thus, the study team is recommending to the Board of East-West Gateway Council of Governments, our metropolitan planning organization, a $667 million street-running light rail investment that would run from Chippewa Boulevard in the South through downtown to Grand Boulevard in the North via one of the two North St. Louis alignment options. See map below.

  • The first phase would:Serve approximately47,000 people;
  • Carry an estimated 9,200 transit riders per day(4,200 of which are transit-dependent riders);
  • Access 65,000 jobs within a half-mile of the route; and
  • Spur possibly millions of dollars in economic development throughout our neighborhoods.

The North St. Louis Alignment
From public feedback gathered during the study, we knew any Northside-Southside route should align with community investment strategies and serve area neighborhoods and residents. Additionally on the Northside, the route should provide pedestrian access to the NGA West campus.

Both the Florissant Avenue and the newly proposed Cass Avenue routes align with community investment strategies, including the Choice Neighborhoods Initiative. These options also serve the pedestrian entrances to the new NGA West campus, Carr Square and Old North neighborhoods. Although both options fulfill project needs and provide access to jobs, redevelopment and neighborhoods, the final north St. Louis route will be chosen during the next project phase, following additional technical work and community input. The map below shows the two Northside alignment options.

East-West Gateway Council of Governments Board to Receive Final Project Recommendation Later This Summer
The study team will submit its final project recommendation to the East-West Gateway Board at its August 29th board meeting. The next step is to secure funding for an environmental study and project development, expected to take place during the environmental review process. At this time, a preferred alignment through North St. Louis will be chosen.

Overall, we have seen and heard great community support for this project. We know it will transform the City of St. Louis and St. Louis’ regional public transit system.

So the study team is recommending two a;ltermatoves North of downtown. Lots of pros & cons to each. The number of stations is the same for each. Either way Carr Square and what’s left of St. Louis Place neighborhood are served by either. So think about it and vote in the poll below.

This poll will close at 8pm tonight..

Wednesday I’ll share the results, what I see as the pros & cons of each, and if I’ve made up my mind — my preferred alternative.

— Steve Patterson

 

Sunday Poll: Should Fireworks Bans Apply Only To Minors, Not Adults?

July 1, 2018 Featured, Sunday Poll Comments Off on Sunday Poll: Should Fireworks Bans Apply Only To Minors, Not Adults?
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As a kid I have vivid memories of 4th of July fireworks — with the only house on our block with a wood roof we had to make sure others’ bottle rockets and such didn’t set our house on fire. When I was a teen we reproofed with asphalt shingles so that concern dissipated.

Now fireworks seems to be a passive event, something you watch.

If you’re looking to set off a few fireworks over the Fourth of July weekend, your best bet for not breaking the law is on the Missouri side of the Mississippi River in St. Charles, Franklin and Jefferson counties.

Illinois bans the use of most consumer fireworks, including bottle rockets, firecrackers, Roman candles and pinwheels. In Missouri, the law is a little more lenient; any firework sold legally with the labels UN0336, 1.4G or novelty are OK to use.

However, counties and municipalities in both states might have further restrictions.

Consumer fireworks, which do not include sparklers and smoke bombs, are illegal in St. Louis and St. Louis County. (Post-Dispatch)

Today’s non-scientific poll is about fireworks, specially municipal/county bans on them.

This poll will automatically close at 8pm tonight,

— Steve Patterson

 

Sunday Poll: Is Being LGBT A Choice?

June 24, 2018 Featured, Sunday Poll Comments Off on Sunday Poll: Is Being LGBT A Choice?
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LGBT Pride events have been happening in the St. Louis region all weekend, the biggest happens todayL

The theme for Sunday’s parade is “Remember. Rise. Respect,” which reflects the history of the gay rights movement and the importance of respecting others within and outside the community.

Pride events are typically held in June to commemorate the 1969 riots at the Stonewall Inn in New York City, after a police raid at the gay bar led to days of demonstrations. (Post-Dispatch)

I’ve seen a lot of change since I came out 35+ years ago, but also a lot that hasn’t changed. Today’s poll is asking for your thoughts on the issue of born this way or choice. This poll, like every week, is totally anonymous.

This poll will close at 8pm tonight.

— Steve Patterson

 

Sunday Poll: Any Hope of Reviving North St. Louis Without Paul McKee?

June 17, 2018 Featured, NorthSide Project, Sunday Poll Comments Off on Sunday Poll: Any Hope of Reviving North St. Louis Without Paul McKee?
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Developer Paul McKee had a bad week last week.

In a letter filed Tuesday, city officials say it’s time to face facts.

“After a decade, the promised redevelopment has not come, nor is there any indication that it will,” the letter states.

“Land lies fallow. Taxes go unpaid. Vacant buildings remain dangerous and unsecured….these are not the results the City bargained for when it granted Northside redevelopment rights for the Area,” the letter reads. 

The letter says that McKee and his entities have failed to fulfill numerous promises to the City and claims that McKee is in default.(KMOV)

The following day it got worse:

Missouri Attorney General Josh Hawley filed on Wednesday a lawsuit against developer Paul McKee’s NorthSide Regeneration LLC, alleging the company kept $4.5 million in state tax credits despite failing to complete the purchase of more than $5 million worth of properties in north St. Louis.
Hawley’s suit brings three civil counts against the company: tax credit fraud, breach of tax credit application and unjust enrichment. (Post-Dispatch)

Paul McKee’s NorthSide Regeneration is the subject of today’s non-scientific poll:

This poll will close automatically at 8pm tonight.  Come back Wednesday for my thoughts.

— Steve Patterson

 

Sunday Poll: Should Mayor Krewson Be Pushing For A Change To Federal Immigration Policy?

June 10, 2018 Featured, Politics/Policy, Sunday Poll Comments Off on Sunday Poll: Should Mayor Krewson Be Pushing For A Change To Federal Immigration Policy?
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Last week Mayor Lyda Krewson posted the following on Facebook:

This week I joined more than 110 mayors calling on leaders of the U.S. House of Representatives to bring the #DreamAct up for a vote and pass a pathway to citizenship for Dreamers. Read the letter:

Here’s the text of the letter signed by Krewson and over 100 other mayors & county officials at the U.S. Conference of Mayors:

Dear Speaker Ryan and Minority Leader Pelosi:

We, the undersigned mayors and county executives, urge you to move expeditiously to pass a bipartisan solution with a pathway to citizenship for Dreamers that does not further harm immigrant communities—the DREAM Act. We are gravely concerned about the futures of Dreamers, hundreds of thousands of whom know our cities and counties as home. We are equally concerned about the increases in immigrant detention and non-criminal arrests over the past year. Congress can and must provide permanent protections for Dreamers without increasing enforcement measures against immigrants at large.

As local leaders we work closely with our residents. We know first-hand that immigrants are cornerstones of our communities who contribute with their diverse perspectives and ingenuity to ou

r local economies and participate robustly in civic life. This is why we are members of Cities for Action, a national coalition that advocates for inclusion of immigrants into our communities to create stronger, safer, and more prosperous cities. Our coalition includes over 175 mayors and county executives, representing over 70 million residents, including 17 million foreign-born residents. The 1.3 million young undocumented immigrants enrolled or immediately eligible for the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program contribute an estimated $2 billion a year in state and local taxes to economies like ours. DACA-eligible residents pay an average of 8.9 percent of their income in state and local taxes.

Recent federal court decisions currently allow DACA recipients to apply for renewals but DACA recipients are hesitating to renew because of the uncertainty over the future of the program, despite our robust efforts at the local level to conduct community outreach. We are concerned that Dreamers without DACA status will be in danger of deportation. Every day that Congress fails to pass legislation, more young lives are thrown into chaos.

DACA recipients have done everything the government has asked of them in good faith: they have proven that they are not public safety threats, submitted to regular check-ins, earned degrees, served in the military, and paid their taxes. They deserve a permanent place in this country they call home. We commend the bipartisan efforts on House Resolution 774 which already has the support of over half of the House of Representatives. We urge you to listen to these Members of Congress and bring legislation that protects Dreamers up for a vote. This is an opportunity to pass the DREAM Act, and finally provide Dreamers the protection they deserve.

This is the subject of today’s poll.

This poll will close automatically at 8pm tonight.

— Steve Patterson

 

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