How Durango created more affordable housing by relaxing laws on garden apartments

Would you consider adding a tiny home in your backyard or a small apartment above a detached garage? While many would say yes, there’s a good chance that your city’s zoning law prohibits or restricts your ability to do so. In Durango, Colorado, they relaxed the laws and saw an increase in affordable housing. In

Read & Share   sourced from: CityLab

When it comes to parking, we’ve already embraced socialism

Equal and available parking for all the cars in all the places all the time! I don’t remember the street protest and social activism that secured this ‘right’ for us, but there’s no doubt that the wheels of government drove us straight to our current state of parking utopia.  Through on-street parking in front of

Read & Share   sourced from: City Observatory

Affordable housing dampening western North Dakota’s potential

As oil production grows and investments and production in the Bakken stabilize, demand for housing and all the other amenities that accompany a quality life increase. In Watford City and Williston, they remain in the midst of a surge in demand for all these things, but they’re still finding the supply behind. Check out this

Read & Share   sourced from: Williston Herald

Beer culture, brewing and liquor license issues in the news

If you’re a regular or casual reader of TheMinotVoice, you’ve probably caught coverage of beer-related issues. It’s an ongoing topic because when valued as an integral part of a local economy; the returns are measurable. Here’s a smattering of recent stories relevant to the topic. Mandan Bar Owner Wins Appeal to Keep Mural A mural

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Could the library, cafe, market, or bar down the street change your life (and our community)?

Cover image credit to Prairie Sky Breads, find them on their website or on Facebook here. As more of our civic discourse moves online, we become less connected to our communities and real people — unless you frequent a local library, bakery, cafe, or bar. And it’s where we live in relation to these amenities

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New opportunities for old coal plants?

There aren’t many days that go by that there isn’t a story about a new coal-fired power plant being decommissioned. We lost one in North Dakota last year; yesterday, there was a story out of Estevan on final dates for their plants. Since 2010, nearly 300 of these plants have closed across the country? Political

Read & Share   sourced from: NPR

Plastic recycling: the scourge of cities becomes a resource

Recycling. It’s been a regular topic of conversation in Minot recently. People — this writer included — want to see us be better stewards of the environment. Others — this writer included — aren’t sure we should be making big public investments in an industry that’s being turned upside down. Where’s it all going to

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The struggle to hire and keep doctors in rural areas means patients go without care

The ripples of health care policy are constantly bouncing around in our lives, and among the bigger trends shaping rural landscapes are the loss of rural hospitals and near access to healthcare. NPR has both sides of the story — patients and providers — on the challenges facing health care in places like Minot. One

Read & Share   sourced from: NPR

Fargo Chamber, economic development corp. launch plan to boost area’s job numbers, economy

The cities of Fargo and West Fargo are putting $400k apiece along with $4 million from the private sector toward the Fueling Our Future initiative spearheaded by the chamber of commerce and economic development corporation. While specific projects aren’t outlined, the focus will be on workforce development and quality of life projects. The goal —

Read & Share   sourced from: InForum

Nuclear energy upstream from Minot? Sask legislature discusses options for aging coal infrastructure

In a world headed towards less carbon-based energy, what do you do with a coal-fired power plant that’s nearing the end of its service life but still has a viable energy distribution network surrounding it? If you’re the Saskatchewan Legislature, the answer is to start talking transitions and alternatives and one that gets mentioned early

Read & Share   sourced from: Estevan Mercury

Should Minot be like West Virginia? How an “Arts and Culture Economy” Rebuilt a Former Coal Town

What does Minot have in common with a West Virginia former coal town? Like all towns, we’re all struggling to create a unique identity and make ourselves attractive to both those in migration and our rising youth. In other words, our fight to survive is the point in common. Few places have felt the urgency

Read & Share   sourced from: Yes!

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Dressbarn to close all of its stores, Minot included

The latest casualty to our cultural retail reorganization — Dressbarn. The national retailer that operates 650 stores across the country announced it will be closing all stores. Minot’s store at Dakota Square Mall is included on that list. Get the full story from the Grand Forks Herald including comments from comments from the Grand Forks

Read & Share   sourced from: Grand Forks Herald

Minneapolis eases liquor license restrictions, restaurants flock to opportunity offering craft cocktail experiences

When it comes to liquor, the City of Minneapolis chose to take a step back and do a little deregulating. As a step of confirmation, they offered the idea to the citizens through a city charter change; the public supported it overwhelmingly (72% yes). And now, in the first season that restaurants were offered the

Read & Share   sourced from: Star Tribune

Survey says American churches are in trouble

If you were running a business and your customer base went from 70% of the population to 50% of the population, what would you do? That’s the environment churches find themselves in over the past 20 years. Lloyd Omdahl writing an opinion piece for Forum Communications has more on the topic.

Read & Share   sourced from: InForum

This is what happens when you cap property taxes; it’s not good

Property taxes — we all hate them. Naturally, as a result of our disdain, we seek to remove that which we don’t like. This attitude is prevalent in North Dakota. In the past, we’ve voted down initiated measures that sought to eliminate property tax; in the recently closed legislative session, the House killed a bill

Read & Share   sourced from: Los Angeles Times

Fargo tourism says: drink beer at local places, earn t-shirt

It’s the place where everything’s flat — except the beer! It’s part of Fargo’s effort to capture and celebrate beer, food, and dining as part of the culture and an attraction for the region. Get the full story on what seems like an obvious win for the tourism department from the Fargo Forum.

Read & Share   sourced from: InForum