Housing & Transportation

30 homeless women evacuated from encampment to hotels

BY: - November 4, 2021

The Minnesota Indian Women’s Resource Center was awarded a $400,000 contract to house 30 homeless, single, Native women who were moved out of two encampments near Cedar and Franklin avenues in early October.

St. Paul, Minneapolis poised to enact first rent control policies in Midwest

BY: - November 2, 2021

St. Paul will be the first city in the Midwest to enact rent control after voters easily passed one of the most stringent policies in the country on Tuesday. Across the river, voters cleared the way for Minneapolis to follow suit by approving a ballot measure that authorizes the City Council to draft a rent […]

St. Paul voters could pass one of the country’s most stringent rent control policies

BY: - October 26, 2021

Emily Lynch’s rent is going up 34% next year. For the past four years, she’s rented a small, beige house just north of the Capitol in St. Paul for $1,176 per month plus utilities. “It’s a dump,” as she puts it. The roof leaks. The basement has mold. The windows are old and barely keep […]

Self-driving car, you’re about to meet Minnesota winter

BY: - October 19, 2021

ROCHESTER — By the time the twee orange-painted vehicles officially made their debut in Rochester on a sunny morning in late September, Akec Garang had already ridden them twice. Garang, who lives in downtown Rochester, was captivated by the vehicles and how they can handle varying traffic conditions. He stepped on about half an hour […]

School bus driver shortage leaves families scrambling to find alternative ways to class

BY: - October 18, 2021

Dominique Smith’s daughter was offered a school bus ride to Brooklyn Center’s Earle Brown Elementary throughout pre-K and kindergarten.  This year, due to a dire shortage of qualified bus drivers, she didn’t have that option. Smith said the school sent her a message before the year started stating that the 6-year-old would walk to school. […]

COMMENTARY

Living with rent control, from someone who grew up in rent-controlled housing | Column

BY: - October 13, 2021

I grew up in San Francisco, raised by low-income Chinese immigrants in a building where every unit is rent-controlled. San Francisco has had rent control since the late 1970s. Last year, California adopted rent control statewide, covering buildings built within the past 15 years. Although I struggled with growing up in a rent-controlled unit, I […]

Huge uptick in pandemic ‘air rage’ hits flight attendants

BY: - September 24, 2021

Flight attendants have been subject to unprecedented harassment over masks and more during the pandemic, and a U.S. House panel on Thursday heard the raw details of those “air rage” incidents. While there’s no hard data, the leader of the flight attendants’ union said the most aggression appears to occur in Southern states where there’s […]

Metro Transit has an excellent low income, reduced fare program, but people aren’t using it

BY: - September 22, 2021

A little known transit assistance program that offers train and bus fare for a buck remains largely untapped by the more than 600,000 metro Minnesotans who are currently eligible.  People who are on an array of public assistance programs like Medical Assistance, MinnesotaCare, unemployment, food stamps, energy assistance, free or reduced lunch or live in […]

COMMENTARY

Franklin encampment crisis should spur us to do something about homelessness — Opinion

BY: - September 21, 2021

The recent Reformer article on the Franklin Street encampment highlighted the ongoing crisis of unsheltered homelessness, especially in the Indigenous community. There is undoubtedly a housing and homelessness crisis in Minneapolis and in communities all across Minnesota. State and local governments must invest in the services and infrastructure to address it on a systemic level. […]

Lawmaker looks to drive down housing costs by overriding local zoning laws

BY: - August 10, 2021

The so-called five L’s of homebuilding — land, lots, lumber, labor and laws — have driven new home construction prices in the Twin Cities far beyond what the typical household can afford: The median price of a new house in the 7-county metro area is $472,000. Rep. Steve Elkins, DFL-Bloomington, outlined a comprehensive housing affordability […]

They came to swing hammers. We came to talk housing policy.

BY: - August 4, 2021

A bipartisan group of Legislators tried out swinging hammers and working drills for a morning with Habitat for Humanity on Tuesday in St. Paul. Chris Coleman, CEO and president of the Twin Cities Habitat for Humanity, said the event was meant to bring lawmakers together to show what they have in common: housing for families. […]

Homeownership slips in Twin Cities as developers focus on apartments and high-end homes

BY: - June 11, 2021

For decades the Twin Cities has boasted one of the highest rates of homeownership in the nation. But a surge of demand and a lack of building — especially after the housing crash and Great Recession — have created an acute shortage of homes that are affordable for most Minnesotans. “Demand for lower-priced homes has long exceeded […]