June 26, 2020

Dear DID Stakeholder,

Since our last update we have heard that many of you have noticed the work we are doing to keep downtown clean, provide sanitation options for those in need, and communicate safety updates. We understand that you recognize the importance of keeping downtown safe and welcoming for all. There is also a high value put on the work we are doing at DID to help our most vulnerable populations. And it is also clear that you are all looking forward to a time when the downtown streets are active and vibrant once again.
While we understand that it may be some time before downtown streets return to the bustling activity levels we all remember, we are seeing activity slowly starting back and we want you to know we have been here all the time, keeping the work you value moving forward. Here are just a few highlights –

Ambassador deployment

  • Starting Monday, June 29, Ambassadors hours will be extended to the early evening.  They will be on the street from 6:00a-8:00p Monday through Saturdays and 6:00a-5:00p on Sundays

Keeping downtown clean and maintained

  • Ongoing cleaning of sidewalks and fixtures, annual maintenance of wood benches and public art.
  • Summer annuals have been planted and irrigation systems are active.

Safety

  • The Safety Communication Center has returned to regular hours and have added back a modified barwatch shift on Friday and Saturdays (Monday–Thursday 6:00a–11:00p Friday-Saturday 6:00a-2:00a and Sunday 6:00a–6:00p).
  • Summer safety initiatives have launched including Coordinated Outreach, YouthLink, Youth Coordinating Board, Police Reserves and MPD buyback beats.
  • Joint Beats partnership program began on Memorial Day. This program is a collaboration between the Mpls Police Department, Hennepin County Sheriff’s Office and Metro Transit Police that increases law enforcement visibility on the streets and enhances collaboration with street outreach teams.
  • Virtual safety update meetings every other Friday.

Assistance for vulnerable

  • In May we launched a Cloth Mask Drive with a goal of collecting 3,000 masks to be distributed to our most vulnerable populations downtown. To date we have collected and distributed over 2,000. We have extended this drive to be ongoing throughout the summer to meet this continual need. Visit mplsdid.com/masks for more information.
  • Continued deployment of hand washing stations throughout downtown. Working on development of an outdoor dispenser of sanitizing supplies for public use.

Providing a connection to active downtown streets

  • Street Show has gone virtual – join us live on Tuesdays and Thursdays at noon. Visit streetshowmpls.org.

The Nicollet Makers Market is available online at nicolletmakersmarket.com/artist-shops. Coming on July 1, look for signage from our Makers on Nicollet with quick links to shop their online markets.

And, if you are downtown, please take some time to pass by our Nicollet office, located at Gaviidae Commons. As was the case with many of you, we needed to install boards on our windows to shield the broken glass and protect our office during the recent violence in our city. In the aftermath, we commissioned a local Black artist, Christopher Harrison, to design and paint a mural on these boards. We invite you to walk by and share in his vision for downtown Minneapolis to come together.

We will continue to keep you informed of the services we are providing and how they may be adapted to meet your needs.

Steve Cramer                                                           Kathryn Reali
President & CEO                                                      Chief Operating Officer