When I consider the boundaries of our new district, these are some of the issues that come to mind. Please let me know about other issues that are important to you.
- Highway 96 bridge over 35W - This bridge currently has only 3 lanes and no pedestrian or safe bicycle access. It has been on MNDOT's list of projects for some time. I have been working with MNDOT and Ramsey County to raise the priority of this project and secure funding for it. A rebuilt bridge would improve traffic flow in the area, provide safe a pedestrian route between Arden Hills and New Brighton (necessary for those who take the bus from downtown New Brighton), and provide pedestrian or bicycle access to Long Lake Regional Park from Arden Hills and Shoreview.
- I-694 Interchange Reconstruction - The project will continue to offer challenges with lane, ramp, and road closures until its completion in 2013.
- Intersection of Highway 10 and Highway 96 - Construction is underway at this intersection, with a resulting closure and detours of both highways.
- You can find information from MNDOT about these projects here: http://www.dot.state.mn.us/metro/projects/694expand/ .
- Bicycle & pedestrian access linking the suburbs in the area - Currently there are paths within some local areas, but access between Shoreview, Arden Hills, and Mounds View is poor. This will improve somewhat after the improvements to the interchanges of Highways 10, 96, and 35W are completed.
- Area public transit - We have limited public transit currently. I would like to see a more comprehensive, metro-wide plan for the ongoing development of public transit.
District 42A includes many lakes - Josephine, Johanna, Valentine, Round, Spring, Turtle and Snail - and a stretch of Rice Creek, as well as numerous smaller ponds, creeks, and wetlands. These comprise an important natural resource. They provide recreation and wildlife habitat, and provide added value for the many property owners that line their shores. Any legislation affecting them needs to strike a balance between preservation, access, and property value. The drought has focused attention on the connection between groundwater usage and the volume of water in some of our lakes. I have supported efforts in the legislature to find long-term solutions to what is expected to be a growing problem.