August 2013 Catalyst

August 2013
Complete Streets—roads that are designed and operated to enable safe access for all users—offer many benefits, including improved safety, mobility, accessibility, public health, and quality of life. However, much of the work surrounding Complete Streets to date has focused on creating policies and guidelines rather than investigating the processes and action steps needed to successfully implement projects. In an effort to fill this knowledge gap, researchers from the Humphrey School of Public Affairs have conducted a study on the planning and implementation of successful Complete Streets projects. The study includes the development of 11 case studies highlighting best practices and a practitioner-oriented guidebook.
Transit-oriented development (TOD) is in demand in the Twin Cities metropolitan region, but regulatory and cost barriers combined with the uncertainty of transit expansion inhibit the market from responding to this demand, according to new U of M research. To find out what policymakers can do to spur TOD, the research team interviewed key players in the private sector. They then created a set of policy recommendations aimed at effectively promoting mixed-income housing and living-wage job creation near transit corridors.
Graduate students from the Humphrey School of Public Affairs recently created plans for projects along the proposed Gateway Corridor transitway as part of a spring 2013 capstone course. The Gateway Corridor is a proposed transitway that will run along Hudson Road parallel to Interstate 94 from St. Paul to the Wisconsin border. As part of their capstone work, the Humphrey students gathered information and produced strategy reports that will help inform decisions about specific initiatives along the transitway: three proposed stations in St. Paul, Maplewood, and Oakdale and a corridor-wide approach for bicycle and pedestrian connections to the transitway.
To improve the understanding of freight transportation’s value in Minnesota, researchers from the Humphrey School of Public Affairs are conducting a study on the economic and community effects of freight transportation. The project, focused on freight rail, is investigating opportunities to give local officials and the general public a better understanding of freight benefits and to leverage private investment in rail infrastructure for a more competitive Minnesota economy.
Publication Credits 

Publisher/Director: Laurie McGinnis

Managing Editor: Pamela Snopl

Editors: Christine Anderson, Amy Friebe, Michael McCarthy

Designer: Cadie Adhikary

Student Interns: Nicola Losik