ACER is committed to creating access, equity, and opportunity for groups historically underrepresented and underserved in major policy decision-making. Therefore, we aim to be leaders in providing communities, families, and individuals with information to adopt a transit lifestyle that results in long term benefits for jobs, education, housing, health, and transportation.
ACER was among 10 community-based, non-profit organizations that received funding from the Corridors of Opportunity initiative of the Metropolitan Council to ensure that underrepresented communities along transitway corridors, in the metropolitan area, are involved in the planning and decision-making process. To date, African immigrants, African Americans and other minorities, residing within the Northwestern suburbs of the Twin Cities, have not participated when mainstream methods have been used to inform stakeholders along the Bottineau Corridor (County Road 81).
With its Making Transit Meaningful project, ACER plans to connect with these communities of color through a series of community forums, and other methods. ACER is partnering with the City of Brooklyn Park to identify and engage this population to become actively involved. The goal is to move underrepresented communities from a lack of basic awareness to a state of informed and engaged community action as it relates to community input along the Bottineau Corridor. ACER’s efforts will focus on segments of the corridor affecting Robbinsdale, Crystal, Brooklyn Park, New Hope, Brooklyn Center, Osseo, and Maple Grove. Find more information about the Bottineau Transitway Project here.
To kickoff the project, ACER convened a Community Leader Forum on Saturday, January 21, 2012 in Brooklyn Park. The forum provided an overview of the Bottineau Transitway and ACER’s role in engaging ethnic minority groups to create a clean, safe, and verdant community.
The next events were a Mobile Guided Tour of the Hiawatha LRT, Cedar Avenue BRT, and the Bottineau Corridors on March 24 from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. and an Open House including technical details and project updates at the Hennepin Technical College – Brooklyn Park campus on April 28.
Video about the Mobile Guided Tour: http://youtu.be/IAH5KOkla3Y
In 2012, ACER was awarded a second grant to continue its engagement efforts in the northwest suburbs.
Playing Your Part
We share your concern about living in a suburban environment that is clean and healthy as well as prosperous, diverse and inclusive. These are all elements of a livable region. While the seven county metropolitan area already has many of these characteristics, we face the reality that there are things we can all do together to ensure the Twin Cities remains this way for generations.
Our future rests on whether everyone that lives, studies, visits and works in the Northwest suburbs can contribute towards this shared goal. That is why we launched the project for the community. Making Transit Meaningful is about small steps to learn, participate and contribute. You can be part of it.
Please contact Denise Butler at DButler@acerinc.org or 763-493-8106 for more information.
Making Transit Meaningful
Leveraging transit to advance and support smart growth, affordable housing, jobs, education, health & wellness, and dynamic community engagement