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Bottineau Pros and Cons: What Do Residents Really Think?

Are you wondering what exact points were made at the Bottineau Transitway public hearing this week?

If there's one thing that residents in Golden Valley are, it's passionate.

, more than 100 residents attended and about 50 people waited in line - for almost four hours - to speak.

But what did they say?

Here are some quotes from residents that both oppose and support the D-1 alignment, which would bring the light rail through Golden Valley with a station stop near Wirth Park or Golden Valley Road.

Say 'No' to Bottineau

Golden Valley Benefit?

  • "[The light rail would] remove benefits to nearby Golden Valley residents that are yielded by the city’s nature area. It will replace the transit line with noise and pollution."
  • "Having come from living in downtown Minneapolis, I enjoy the light rail. But I don't feel like we have the density to support that kind of ridership in Golden Valley."
  • (To the City Council) "You guys are our firewall. We elect you here to represent us. I dont understand how you guys can vote to move forward." 
  • "I think it could benefit us if it was going alongside Winnetka or came along a different route. I don't think it's going to help me at all and I will  consider moving because it's not going to be restful or peaceful in my neighborhood."
  • "I’m a regular bus rider. If Golden Valley is concerned about having better transit, where were they when the bus system cut back on the route and took away the 19 and put the 14 in, which takes 10 minutes longer to get downtown?"

Traffic

  • "I’m very suspicious about the traffic coming. I can’t see why we need it to bring more people in."

Cost

  • "I have kids in school and I think we need to spend money on schools. This is not the time to do the light rail."
  • "It's money that we, the tax payer, can not afford."

Frequency

  • "[The light rail will stop] every seven and a half minutes during rush-hour, every 15 minutes during day, and every 30 minutes at night. Golden Valley has already rejected it. Now we have to re-visit it again? Why do we have to keep revisiting this?"

Jobs

  • "Jobs will be created regardless of which route will be selected. for those reasons i encourage the council to vote against.

Preservation

  • "To me, Wirth Park is a sacred space and it's a beautiful treasure. This is about speaking up for the last child in the woods. I’m afraid that we’re going to end up at the end of this process and it’s going to be too late to look at other options. I love light rail. But this is all so sudden."
  • "I want to see this looked at as a regional issue and not a fight of Golden Valley against the world. 
  • "Everyone assumes that the light rail reduces pollution. It doesn't. It depends on how many people are riding it and how many cars have stopped driving."
  • "We have fought for 40 years to make sure that Golden Valley is not 'lightened.' We are not opposed to light rail, although it's been very well stated that economically speaking, it's a really dumb route. Environmentally speaking, it's a really dumb route."
  • "I also don't see what an environmental impact study could offer the city, we know that if a light rail goes through a park it's going to have a severe impact." 
  • "This resolution impacts me substantially. I don't take this issue lightly. We have so many other areas that are between the two cities that can accommodate this type of infrastructure without riping apart a park."

Location

  • "If you had a contest to figure out where the worst place to put a light rail station would be, the Golden Valley Road location might come in first or second."
  • "I am concerned. The line is not going to benefit Golden Valley at all. I think the D-2 proposed line is a much better option than D-1. I would encourage you to keep your position you took the last time you voted on this the same."
  • "I was a U of M student and have been taking the bus for 25 years. I take the bus everyday to work downtown. I’m really a big fan of mass transit, but I’m not in favor of D-1. I want to give this a fair shake and be objective, but I want to figure out how it would positively impact the community. If it comes through Golden Valley, I may just consider selling my home."

Say 'Yes' to Bottineau

Back on Track

  • "This new resolution takes a lot more into consideration and puts this study back on track. That’s what’s important here. I’d ask you to support it to get all the answers we need to make the appropriate decisions in the future."

Population Boom

  • "Golden Valley is stagnant. Golden Valley's population hasn't changed in two decades. We have to be part of the greater metro area and the light rail will help us get there."
  • "The Twin Cities grew from 1900 to 1950 largely because of light rail. That's an opportunity that Golden Valley shouldn't overlook. This is not a bad thing, this is a good thing. If we don't get it now, this community will not be part of this opportunity."

We Need the Study

  • "I strongly urge the council to support the resolution. It enables further study of the issue in the DEIS. That’s where work happens."
  • "Look to that resolution and address your concerns and get some say in the matter. We need to be at the bargaining table. There’s a lot of creativity that could be rolled into the architecture of the statement."
  • "The DEIS is the next step and it's designed to provide us as elected officials and citizens to make an informed decision. I ask you to be courageous and support the LPA at this point. This is a regional asset that  may not happen w thout your willingness to take this next step."
  • "Access to reliable transportation is critical to the independence of those with disabilities and complex medical conditions."
Sheila Bahl November 30, 2012 at 04:25 PM
It is absolutely not true that the people who oppose the D1 allignment automatically support the D2 down Penn Ave. I and most of the other residents with whom I have discussed this issue, think that the D2 route would also be just awful for people that live there and that is why we would like Hennepin County to look at another possible route. We would hate to see that neighborhood divided. So please, do not assume that if someone is against D1 that they would be if favor of D2. A majority of us actually to have a great deal of empathy for the people of North Mpls. and would like to work with them to find a route that would be of benefit to all of us.
Sean Fahey November 30, 2012 at 09:15 PM
Mr Snope, if we reject D1 and North Mpls rejects D2 then the County should find another path and stop ramming it down our throats. Opponents of either route should band together and fight both D1 and D2. Both routes will exclude one community while harming the other community. Why should we accept that? I spoke against the D1 route at the meeting to protect our parks. Two or three freight trains is very different from bi-directional trains every 10 minutes and two large stations that will use park land in areas that are very narrow. Rejecting D1 doesn't force D2. GV and North Mpls need to stick together on this and fight it.
Andrea Wiley December 02, 2012 at 02:48 AM
It is my understanding there will only be one station either at Golden Valley Road or at Plymouth road and Theodore Wirth Parkway.
Sheila Bahl December 03, 2012 at 09:26 PM
From what I understand, it is not at all certain whether GV would have any stops. The station that was proposed on GV Road would be located underneath the bridge. It would be reached by elevators located on the bridge. Because the ridership would probably be quite low at this location, it may not be feasible to have a stop there. If a station was built there, Hennepin County probably would put pressure on GV for developement of that area. If this would mean more high-density housing or a mixture of this and commercial businesses, I don't know. Hennepin County has a policy of pushing transit-oriented developement along light rail lines. As it is now, there are very few people that are within the quarter mile area, which is the furthest distance people are likely to walk to a station. Since there may be no or very little parking near this station, this may also prevent this station from being viable. I haven't heard much about the other options. But yes, I would guess they wouldn't build more than one station.
Valerie Engler December 03, 2012 at 11:44 PM
From what I can see in the DEIS scoping documents, there are two proposed stations in the D-1 alignment, but nothing set in stone. Here's where you can find more information: http://bottineautransitway.org/library/2011-2012_deis_scoping_documents.htm

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