Jackson Street Railroad Park

by Barry Krelitz | Mar 15, 2013
| 2 Comments

Summary:

Saint Paul was the birthplace of the Great Northern Railroad, and for decades the gateway to the Dakotas and the Pacific Northwest. Today, this rich railroad heritage is visible in our city, our business, and our culture– particularly in our numerous railroad-related groups and organizations.

As one of those groups, the Twin City Model Railroad Museum has been a community treasure for decades, and its displays have entranced generations of St. Paul families. Today, the museum is looking to expand its role in the community by becoming the central player in the creation of the Jackson Street Railroad Park. This Park would be an expansion of a nascent railroad-related cultural area developing along Jackson Street. With the arrival of the Twin City Model Railroad Museum, this area will become a major attraction for our city and region.

At the present, our city’s three most popular railroad-related organizations are scattered across the city. The Twin City Model Railroad Museum is divided into two locations in Bandana Square– in separate buildings and on separate levels. Choo Choo Bob’s toy store is located along Marshall Avenue, in a popular but parking-deficient location. The Jackson Street Roundhouse has space and parking, but suffers from a lack of complimentary neighbors. By combining these cultural attractions, along with the other railroad-related groups in the area such as the Great Northern Railway Historical Society, or the Friends of the 261, we can create the density and strength of experience that will draw audiences from across the state and region.

About You

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About You

First Name

Barry

Last Name

Krelitz

City

Minneapolis

County

Hennepin

Country

United States, MN

Website (if you have one)

Names of others who helped contribute to my idea

How did you hear about the Forever Saint Paul Challenge?

On tv.

About Your Organization (if applicable)

Organization Name (if applicable)

Twin City Model Railroad Museum

Organization Website

Organization Phone

651-647-9628

Organization Address

1021 Bandana Blvd. E., Suite 222

City

St. Paul

Organization Country

United States, MN, Ramsey County

Your idea

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Title of your idea

Jackson Street Railroad Park

Give us the highlights of your idea for making Saint Paul great (2,000 characters maximum or approx. 250 words)

Saint Paul was the birthplace of the Great Northern Railroad, and for decades the gateway to the Dakotas and the Pacific Northwest. Today, this rich railroad heritage is visible in our city, our business, and our culture– particularly in our numerous railroad-related groups and organizations.
As one of those groups, the Twin City Model Railroad Museum has been a community treasure for decades, and its displays have entranced generations of St. Paul families. Today, the museum is looking to expand its role in the community by becoming the central player in the creation of the Jackson Street Railroad Park. This Park would be an expansion of a nascent railroad-related cultural area developing along Jackson Street. With the arrival of the Twin City Model Railroad Museum, this area will become a major attraction for our city and region.
At the present, our city’s three most popular railroad-related organizations are scattered across the city. The Twin City Model Railroad Museum is divided into two locations in Bandana Square– in separate buildings and on separate levels. Choo Choo Bob’s toy store is located along Marshall Avenue, in a popular but parking-deficient location. The Jackson Street Roundhouse has space and parking, but suffers from a lack of complimentary neighbors. By combining these cultural attractions, along with the other railroad-related groups in the area such as the Great Northern Railway Historical Society, or the Friends of the 261, we can create the density and strength of experience that will draw audiences from across the state and region.

Website address (if applicable)

Innovation

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What makes your idea different or unexpected? (4000 characters maximum or approx. 500 words)

While many cities offer individual cultural attractions that focus on art, history, or technology, the Jackson Street Railroad Park offers a unique and coordinated experience that combines it all! Railroading, model railroading, history, and engineering will be presented in a historic setting and green space. The Jackson Street area and Trout Brook/Trillium Park area are undergoing significant transformation in the next few years, due to the shifting of I-35E and the creation of the park. Our Jackson Street Railroad Park can be a major part of this transformation, helping to shift the neighborhood towards a healthy mix of businesses and social/cultural centers.

Impact

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This Entry is about (Issues)

How will your idea make a difference in Saint Paul? (4000 characters maximum or approx. 500 words)

St. Paul is home to some of the best museums in our state and region, yet we lack a coordinated organization that promotes and communicates the significance of railroading in our region. By creating a Jackson Street Railroad Park, we will be creating three positive outcomes for our community. For local residents and visitors, our Park will offer an entertaining and informative opportunity to learn about our railroad heritage, and the technology, culture, and imagination that formed it. A Jackson Street Railroad Park will become a positive asset to a neighborhood’s economic health and vitality, creating both short-term construction jobs, and long-term employment for museum, store, and café personnel. Finally, the Jackson Street Railroad Park will be a family destination for the entire area.

Sustainability

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Why do you think people will recognize or remember your idea after it comes to life? How might it inspire others to do something similar in their community? (4000 characters maximum or approx. 500 words)

Though a few other cities have railroad parks, no other cities have the quality of railroad-related organizations that we have. By creating the Jackson Street Railroad Park, we will be modeling the powerful success that can result from the collaboration between non-profits cultural organizations, commercial businesses, and the city. Like “theater districts” or “creative zones,” this neighborhood will attract enough organizations with over-lapping missions to ignite the spark that draws visitors, shoppers, and other residents. We believe this idea can transform the broader neighborhood, and inspire other groups and cities to develop similar projects.

Vong Ambrocio said: As long as we are learning anything that would serve as something that will tell us that we need to know such things that we have known. ... about this Competition Entry. - 2535 days ago read more >
Paul von Fange said: This is a great opportunity to leverage the coming light-rail with St. Paul's historic past by bringing together the steam locomotives ... about this Competition Entry. - 2847 days ago read more >

Barry Krelitz updated this Competition Entry. - 2863 days ago

Barry Krelitz submitted this idea. - 2863 days ago