North St. Paul has added its own twist to a metro area street-construction plan.
The city has taken the national “Complete Streets” initiative – a set of policies calling for better-designed and usually narrower roads – a step further by adding eco-friendly elements such as trees and rainwater gardens to the design.
Advocates hope North St. Paul’s plan, dubbed “Living Streets,” will prevent polluted runoff from entering storm drains, create safer streets and make neighborhoods more attractive – all at less cost to the city.
Traditionally, “streets were looked at very narrowly as places for travel,” City Manager Wally Wysopal said. “Now we realize we need to look at their impact for overall environmental concerns.”
If “living streets” is going to become a movement, it should get a domain like livingstreets.org or livingstreets.com , the first is held by squatters, the second by an individual advocate. livingstreets.org.uk is a pedestrian charity, close but not quite.