Response Page -
Elwyn Tinklenberg Interview
- Using Transportation to Guide
These comments are responses
to the questions listed below,
which were generated in regard to the
interview of 05-09-08.
1._6.2 average___ On
a scale of (0) most disagreement, to (5) neutral, to (10) most
agreement, should transportation policy be geared to encouraging new
forms of development, such as mixed-use urban villages?
2. _7.3 average___ On a scale of (0) most disagreement, to (5)
neutral, to (10) most agreement, should owners of such developments be
required to share the costs of transit or highway improvements that
and Ruth Hauge
Scott Halstead (0) (10)
Good Transit/Transportation systems will draw developers because
employers and employees will want accessibility especially with the
high cost of fuel/energy. Transit and transportation projects financed
with transit funds need to meet the needs of the travelers.
Development and other purposes are secondary. If they are primary,
show me their $!
We should have a "lifespan community development strategy," as we face
an unprecedented age wave, otherwise we're going to have a lot of
people living on isolated islands. Other communities are already
taking a much more holistic view of these demographic changes, such as
Atlanta's Regional Commission initiative called Aging Atlanta. They
see the demographic changes as an economic development opportunity by
making it possible for people to live in their communities for a
R. Finnegan, Sr.
I think development and transportation policies should be coordinated
to insure that development takes place concomitant with extension of
highways and rail lines.
And developers should help pay for such extensions. It was too bad
Metropolitan Planning Commission idea discussed in the 1950s that
development be encouraged along new light rail lines was not adopted.
There was too much opposition from municipalities and developers at
the time. It is not too late to adopt that idea now.
It is interesting to see that some people recognize that
transportation including movement of people and commerce is influenced
by transportation routes--look at sea lanes, rivers, and the opening
of the west and the US --where did cities and towns evolve--along the
routes defined by James J Hill and other who built the railroads.
While we must be careful in letting the development of some areas
drive the transportation or vice versa the link in the two topics must
and should be well coordinated. This can happen with reasonable people
involved in a meaningful discussion that has some well defined metrics
etc. Bottom line is that transportation may not always to the stimulus
for new development but new developments may be the stimulus for
transportation--link the two and set priorities together--this can
work and will help to move people across regions and around the
central hub --like from Maple Grove to Bloomington etc.
Sharing cost can take many forms--local area taxes, special local
fees, user fees, etc. The local areas can and should definitely share
in the cost of the stations and entry and exit environments. The
routes in the areas should be fully coordinated and planned in the
zoning to avoid unneeded conflict. Transportation needs to be looked
at however as a common purpose and common good topics and not be
specific cost of the people in the area--if the link to the areas
serves only those in a limited area then perhaps the mode of
transportation is not appropriate or needed in the areas and the
priorities are not correct. If on the other hand a specific developer
will fund a spur etc. from a main line to a new development then that
should be allowed but cost locked and firm to that developer etc. for
a long term period.
Glenn S. Dorfman
They already do pay through city fees, development agreements, road
access charges. Since end users often pay these charges, does this
policy conflict with affordable housing as a public policy goal?
I’d have to think more about question 2. I’m uncertain without further
information on related factors.
There needs to be discussion of "development" both in design terms and
as economic development, job creation and job value enhancement. In
other words, can transportation improve access to better paid jobs for
workers and more employees for employers? Are transit and highways
more alike than different in this context or more different than
alike? Should there be a seat at the transportation planning table for
There is already way to much control of land use for housing in the
Metro that has driven the cost of land to the point where only the big
National Builders can compete.
As Yogi Berra would say this is déjà vu all over again. Minneapolis
developed along the street car lines in what would now be called
“mixed use urban villages.” Having transportation planning integrated
with other planning (not dictating, but coordinating with business,
education, and recreational planning) makes sense and will lead to economically integrated communities which should help deal with some
of our current problems such as concentration of poverty. Government
policies in the past (massive low income housing projects,
bureaucratic regulations that pushed private developers out of the
more urban areas into low cost, loosely regulated rural areas, etc.)
have created many of our current problems.
Having statewide transportation planning along with other planning
centered in the office of Governor is good and could provide a way for
government policy to help solve problems rather than create them. The
Governor’s office should have adequate planning staff to provide
thoughtful, comprehensive leadership. Tinklenberg did not have to
worry about this since he worked for a Governor who was not interested
in public policy, only in personal promotion.
Tinklenberg’s hub and spoke light rail sound a lot like Professor
Anderson’s PRT proposal of the 1960s. Too bad we didn’t do things
earlier when purchase of right-of-way would have been simpler and far
less costly. Even today, with a comprehensive plan, it would make
sense to bond to purchase the land or easements necessary for a
comprehensive transportation plan in the urban and urbanizing areas.
The plan should be such that it could be continued further out as the
metropolitan area expands. When we first talked of metropolitan
solutions to some of our government problems we focused on a five
county SMSA (economically integrated metro area by fed definition) and
I believe we now have a 12 county SMA.
I think all parties involved, including developers and transportation
users, should help pay for transportation infrastructure. This could
include toll roads.
I am opposed to constitutionally dedicated taxes for any governmental
function. The legislature should have the ability to allocate money as
needed. I also strongly oppose earmarks – money should be spent for
the greatest needs, not the greatest political influence.
Owners of the development will pass the cost onto the consumer, but
there should be some cost for the new development.
Schluter (5) (8) I have very mixed feelings whether the
transportation policy should be involved in development policy rather
than basic transportation.
The Civic Caucus
is a non-partisan,
tax-exempt educational organization. The Core participants
include persons of varying political persuasions, reflecting years of leadership in politics and
business. Click here
to see a short personal background of each.
Verne C. Johnson, chair; Lee Canning, Charles Clay, Bill Frenzel,
Paul Gilje, Jim Hetland, John Mooty, Jim Olson,
Wayne Popham and John Rollwagen.