Tuesday, May 30, 2006

East Lake Street Construction

I was running errands this afternoon and discovered that the East Lake Street Reconstruction & Streetscaping Project has now started in the stretch from Hiawatha to the West River Parkway.

I think in the long run this is going to be a boon to this part of town. Hopefully, it will eliminate some of the empty buildings (with messages in the window to call XXX-XXXX and "leave a message" - 3 guesses on what that's all about), the graffitti and the general grunginess that has settled on some portions of the street since the last update 50 years ago. Of course, all of this helps our property values :-)

However, I am a little worried about some of the small business that are currently located in the midst of this construction. Many of them moved to East Lake Street when it was still a little dicey. That took courage & vision. It's obvious that many of them have put their heart & soul (not to mention their wallet) into rehabbing the old buildings and introducing quality businesses to the area.

I'm hoping that area residents keep these businesses in mind during the construction and patronize them even if it does mean a little extra work to find parking, etc.

I've added asterisk to the businesses in the "The Neighborhood" section of this blog that shows businesses located on East Lake Street. (Prairie Woodworking, Craftsman Restaurant, Midtown Farmer's Market and Town Talk Diner). There are also a few others that don't have a website.....

Manny's Tortas - 2700 E. Lake Street (good Mexican sandwiches)
El Nuevo Rodeo - 2709 E. Lake Street (also Mexican food - I saw them setting out sidwalk tables today)
El Norteno - 4000 E. Lake Street (You guessed it, Mexican restaurant)
Lake Street Garage - 3508 E. Lake Street (Burgers, etc. I love this place)
Dunn Brothers - E. Lake Street & West River Parkway
Longfellow Grill - E. Lake Street & West River Parkway (trendy burgers, etc. - outside seating)
Papa Murphy's Pizza - E. Lake Street & West River Parkway
Dairy Queen - 43rd Avenue & E. Lake Street. (yum)
Chinese Restaurant (don't know the name) - 43rd Avenue & E. Lake Street.
American Rug Laundry - 4222 E. Lake Street
Soderberg's - 3305 E. Lake Street (flower & garden store)

I think Super America & McDonalds can probably survive without our help, but if I missed any other business that is worth a special trip, let me know!

Also, if you visit one of these places during construction - come back and post a review!


kk said...

We were just at the Lake Street DQ tonight, taking advantage of a 2 for 1 blizzard coupon that we had for only that location. I love the May Blizzard of the Month: Brownie Batter.

We also stopped at the Rainbow on Lake and Hiawatha - what a mess that intersection/area is during construction!

I do hope that in the end the project helps to revitalize the area without running over the current businesses with gentrification.

StuccoHouse said...

I have a friend whose addicted to that DQ. I've spent quite a few nights with my chocolate dipped cone watching traffic from those picnic tables :-)Kind of fun actually.

I don't know....since that shooting victim's body was dropped off at Rainbow, I have kind of steered clear. I also get the "hey baby" in that parking lot there which creeps me out. But, I did try the Hop Wong Chinese place over there which was pretty good (and they deliver) :-)

kk said...

We usually frequent the DQ at Minnehaha Falls which is closer to our house. The people watching is not usually as interesting at that location. Come to think of it - I'm not even sure how we came to have coupons that were only good at the Lake Street DQ?

Our house is pretty much equal distance between the Cub and Rainbow on Lake Street and the Cub on 60th and Lyndale (at least in terms of travel time when you take in to account the LRT delays). That Cub is still "hey baby," but no shooting victims.

The one thing I really wish I could change about our 'hood is a better local small grocery. The local Food Pride just doesn't cut it sometimes.

StuccoHouse said...

I'll have to give the Minnehaha DQ a try. It's close to the coffee shop I like (and the cute coffee guy :-). I do go to the Lake Street Cub for the warm, fresh tortillas & mangos. But I will admit that when I moved to this neighborhood, I made one of the guys I know go with me the first time I went there. He laughed at me. When I don't feel like dealing with the hey-baby factor, I hit Lunds or the Cub in Har Mar.

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