The livability initiative stems from discussion with communities during Phase 1 (2016-2018) of the Rethinking I-94 study, a long-term effort to develop a new vision for I-94 between Minneapolis and St. Paul. During our engagement with communities along the I-94, we learned that community members:
- Are interested in issues beyond the freeway
- Value involvement early and continuously; want accurate, timely information
- Want their values and visions to be reflected in project designs
From this effort, we developed the following set of guiding commitments based on what people expect from our agency.
We also created a livability framework based on what people expect from our project work. The framework will guide how we design and evaluate future projects beyond Rethinking I-94.
These statements will guide how we work with communities in the future:
- Vision: Understanding a community’s underlying values and issues of importance, now and into the future, to articulate common ground; building toward that vision with each project and demonstrating that commitment to communities over time.
- Co-power: Cultivating joint ownership of each stage of the process; acknowledging that local knowledge is valid and valuable expertise; including communities in identifying criteria for prioritizing decisions and being partners in problem solving.
- Authenticity and respect: Providing timely, accessible information as well as multiple options for participation; acknowledging issues and constraints communicated by stakeholders.
- Transparency: Communicating realistic timelines, participation impact, funding realities, decision-making processes and levels of authority; making visible the context of the whole process at each step.
- Inclusivity: Creating inclusive partnerships and teams from vision to construction; ensuring multiple voices are engaged and reflected in decision making
Note: MnDOT developed this framework using input from academic institutions, businesses, community-based organizations, commuters and residents along the I-94 corridor between St. Paul and Minneapolis.