I was at the grand opening of the St. Paul Union Depot this past Saturday (12/8), to see what our $243 million hath wrought. For a perspective, that's enough money to run the City of Roseville for five years. I'm no expert in such matters but as waiting rooms go, I'm having a hard time seeing where all that money went. Maybe they put in a green roof and Solyndra solar panels.
Nonetheless, the smell of money was everywhere in the opening day exhibits, including my free "Green Line Visitor's Guide" I took home. It's an 86 page full color high gloss directory of the businesses within two blocks of the Central Corridor light rail being constructed, a.k.a. the Green Line. It apparently will be published twice a year, a "Julia" like guide to a planned life of quiet desperation along the tracks. You can live on the West Bank, get a job in the Raymond Creative Enterprise Zone, eat, shop, and get your nails done all along the Midway. Plus, there's the exciting night life in downtown St. Paul. The 1970's dream of the St. Paul People Mover, originally designed to carry public officials from CIty Hall to the Payne Reliever has finally been realized, only on a much more grand scale.
They have their own web site, too, www.onthegreenline.com, one you cannot find or link from the main MetroTransit.org site. And neither site seems to acknowledge such a Green Line directory exists or provide a way to get a copy. At what they must have paid to print it, it could be a little embarrassing I suppose.
I'm going to keep it as a scorecard, so that when the Green Line finally starts running two years from now, I can tally the businesses lost to our urban planners' concept of creative destruction.
Cross-posted and comments welcome at Speed Gibson