Welcome back to The Flyover, your daily midday digest of what local media outlets and Twitter-ers are gabbing about.
Fancy New Venue Coming to… Oh Well, Shakopee
“Amphitheater” is a weird word – a “ph” and a “th” nearly bumping into each other like that? But on the right night, an amphitheater is a great place to see a show, which means there could be a good deal of Shakopee in your future summers. Earlier this year, Swervo Development announced its plans for a new 19,000 capacity venue that will be part of a complex called Canterbury Commons. (That’s 11,000 seats, plus lawn space for 8,000 more.) Yesterday, they released artist renderings of the amphitheater, and as entertainment complexes go… it’s very complex. (And violet!) A whole lot of levels. The plans go to the Shakopee Planning Commission next week, Bring Me the News reports.
MN House Candidate to WaPo: “Every Issue Is a Trans Issue”
Awesome news: According to the Washington Post, it’s a record year for trans and nonbinary candidates on the campaign trail, with “55 trans candidates running for office, alongside 20 gender nonconforming candidates, 18 nonbinary candidates and four Two-Spirit candidates.” Their piece highlights a few political hopefuls, including Leigh Finke, who is running to represent District 66A (a chunk of Falcon Heights) in the Minnesota House of Representatives. In her interview, Finke expresses her disgust at local politicians who shared a (very fake, alarmist) story about schools providing litter boxes for people who identify as cats. “I think that we’re one bad election from being a state like Wisconsin,” she says. She also discusses her hopes to make healthcare more accessible for trans individuals and plans fight any bullshit bathrooms bills. If elected, Finke would be the first out trans state legislator in Minnesota. (Minneapolis City Council president Andrea Jenkins was the first Black, trans woman elected to public office in the United States.)
2040 Plan: Bureaucracy Wins… For Now
The 2040 Plan permits rezoning of Minneapolis neighborhoods that currently don’t allow multi-family units, meaning things like apartments, duplexes, triplexes, and multi-use buildings. Landlords and construction companies love it–more projects means more people and more money. Meanwhile, many homeowners don’t like it, as it could drastically change the vibe of their area. They live in the city, but they don’t want more “city” in their area of the city.
So, in 2018, three groups managed to get 2040 put on hold. Smart Growth Minneapolis, the Audubon Chapter of Minneapolis, and Minnesota Citizens for the Protection of Migratory Birds argue that under the Minnesota Environmental Rights Act a study must first be conducted on the environmental impact 2040 could have. 2040ers believe this should be done on a project-by-project basis, and that putting plans on hold to await the trial could trigger a waterfall of lawsuits and legal issues. This week, Hennepin County District Judge Joseph Klein opted for less litigation and red tape delays, allowing 2040 to continue moving forward until a hearing can be scheduled, most likely in fall. In the meantime, it looks like a few 2040 things are coming to the Fulton, Holland, and Keewaydin ‘hoods soon.
Meanwhile, renters need six-figure salaries if we want to buy a home, so we’ll have to wait and see what crumbs these new 2040 projects throw our way.
Cute Map Alert
What is Minnesota made of? A sweet little map devised by Christopher Ingraham at the Minnesota Reformer answered that yesterday: Corn. Last year 8.5 million acres of corn were planted, covering 15% of the state’s area. And fully a third of those acres were set aside for ethanol production—”a hair more than the acreage for all towns, cities and roads in the state,” Ingraham notes, despite the fact that “the carbon footprint of ethanol is actually worse than that of regular gas.” But with broad bipartisan support, don’t expect ethanol production to decline any time soon. Other takeaways: The sugar beet industry still claims its patch of land, and, judging by the area claimed by lawns and golf courses, there’s a lot of room for sex forest growth.