Criticism for the Commons

The following letter-to-the-editor by Arlene Fried and Harvey Ettinger was published in the June 18, 2015 edition of the Southwest Journal.

Criticism for the Commons

We are writing regarding the Journal’s June 6 article about the newly minted concept design for the two block area downtown now being called the Commons.

Not everyone in Minneapolis is enamored with the Commons.  Some of us are of the opinion that the Commons is not really a public park and that the process creating the Commons was flawed.

In a democracy, we expect that a project as expansive and expensive as the Commons be subject to certain tenets of good government.  We expect that prior to entering into any agreements regarding the creation of a signature park, there be transparency, citizen participation and full accountability.  In creating the Commons, the City violated all of these tenets. Your article ignores the criticism this has caused.

Responsible and balanced reporting looks at the comprehensive picture–not just the design. We are disappointed that your article failed to provide a balanced perspective.

Arlene Fried
Bryn Mawr Resident and
Co-founder of Park Watch

Harvey Ettinger
East Lake of the Isles Resident
and Member of Park Watch