Medina to survey resident interest in bus rapid transit

The city of Medina is preparing to survey residents about interest in bus rapid transit service, BRT, from somewhere in the vicinity of Highway 55, perhaps the Medina Entertainment Center, to downtown Minneapolis.

City Administrator Scott Johnson asked the City Council to comment on a draft survey at its Jan. 7 meeting. Then City Councilor Melissa Martinson offered to help reword some of the questions. Once the survey questions are cleaned up and improved, residents will have a chance to respond. The survey also will be posted on the city website at ci.medina.mn.us.

As the City Council discussed the survey, City Councilor Kathleen Martin described her considerations if she were to take BRT downtown. She told Johnson to ask what would be a convenient location for a park-and-ride site because this would affect her answers to the survey. Also she suggested asking what time prospective riders would like to arrive downtown.

City Councilor Jeff Pederson said the Medina Entertainment Center location would be ideal for a BRT stop for residents of the Dominium rental townhomes, which are proposed for a site located north of the MEC.

Mayor Liz Weir said the Metropolitan Council needs to have a certain minimum number of riders to make a Medina BRT stop viable. The bus is likely to have only a few stops and thus is likely to be “fairly express.” She added that Foxberry Farms residents might be interested in BRT. They are frustrated about difficulty of getting onto County Road 116 to get to Highway 55.

At the same meeting, the City Council looked at proposals for three residential developments containing 112 single-family homes and 85 apartment units. (See separate story in this newspaper.) All would be located north of Highway 55, and many new residents are likely to head for Highway 55 to get downtown.

The Medina Planning Commission is scheduled to look at three more development proposals, including the Dominium rental townhomes. Several other housing developments are being built in the vicinity of Highway 55, including two large Lennar The Enclave developments in uptown Hamel. Many new residents are expected to “high 55 it” to downtown.

And recently Medina city officials told the Met Council that its population projections for the area should take into consideration plans for traffic and transporting people. Coordination with the Minnesota Department of Transportation is needed.

The City Council also took up other business on Jan. 7.

 

Medina Mayor Liz Weir (left) presents a certificate of recognition to Medina resident Judy Mallett for her service as Medina’s commissioner representative on the Lake Minnetonka Communications Communication. The presentation took place at the Jan. 7 City Council meeting. Mallett was involved in Medina’s exit from the LMCC and was the city’s lead negotiator in getting a direct broadband franchise agreement with Mediacom. (Sun staff photo by Susan Van Cleaf)

Medina Mayor Liz Weir (left) presents a certificate of recognition to Medina resident Judy Mallett for her service as Medina’s commissioner representative on the Lake Minnetonka Communications Communication. The presentation took place at the Jan. 7 City Council meeting. Mallett was involved in Medina’s exit from the LMCC and was the city’s lead negotiator in getting a direct broadband franchise agreement with Mediacom. (Sun staff photo by Susan Van Cleaf)

RECOGNIZING JUDY MALLET

The City Council recognized Medina resident Judy Mallet for two years of “dedicated service” to the city as its commissioner representative on the Lake Minnetonka Communications Commission.

Mallett was the lead negotiator in Medina’s pursuit of a direct franchise agreement with Mediacom. During Mallett’s time on the LMCC, Medina left the LMCC joint powers agreement and entered into a separate cable franchise agreement with Mediacom that city officials considered to be favorable to the city. Also the city and Mediacom completed a map of plans for bringing broadband infrastructure to underserved parts of the city.

Mallett said she had self-interest in pushing for access to broadband cable connections for underserved areas of Medina. She thanked everyone who helped her in her quest, including the late Mayor Tom Crosby and Weir.

Without Weir’s continued leadership after Crosby’s death, “we wouldn’t have this franchise,” Mallett said.

APPOINTMENTS

The City Council made a number of appointments for 2014.

Park Commissioner Janet White will move over to the Planning Commission for a three-year term. She will join Victoria Reid, who was reappointed to a three-year term.

Dino DesLauriers and Madeleine Linck were reappointed to the Park Commission for three-year terms.

City Councilor John Anderson was reappointed to serve as acting mayor when Mayor Liz Weir is absent.

The South Crow River News & Delano Eagle was reappointed to serve as Medina’s designated newspaper for legal notices.

LABOR AGREEMENT

The City Council approved a labor agreement between the city and Law Enforcement Labor Services Inc., Local No. 36. City Administrator Johnson said the terms were similar to labor agreements with other city employees.

HOLIDAY TRAIN

Medina Police Chief Ed Belland said in a memo that police reservists worked at Loretto’s Holiday Train event in chilling conditions for over two hours. Despite the cold, an estimated 2,000 people turned out to see the Holiday Train and donate 1,800 pounds of food and $25,000 in cash to area food shelves.

Contact Susan Van Cleaf at susan.vancleaf@ecm-inc.com

 

 

 

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