Dangerous northeast Minneapolis street has residents on edge

A dangerous street in northeast Minneapolis has neighbors asking for change. Most on the strip are even afraid to park their cars outside of their very own homes.

People living along northeast Johnson Street are seeing red these days because over the last six months there’s been a pedestrian accident, a scooter accident, and a series of aggressive driving incidents.

“They want to get places fast but at the risk of hurting someone or killing somebody it isn’t worth it,” northeast Minneapolis resident Anne Therkelsen said.

For Therkelsen, life on their street is tough – “it makes you want to decide to not live here anymore.”

Those are heavy words coming from a woman who loves northeast Minneapolis enough to have lived on the noisy, two-way drag fed by a 35W north off ramp for nearly a decade.

Her family lost their car insurance because over the last eight years, her parked cars have been struck not once, not twice, but four times.  And they’ve totaled two of her vehicles.

In a neighborhood meeting on Tuesday, Therkelsen and a room full of others made their voices heard about the dangers of Johnson Street and all the accidents. Minneapolis police tell Fox 9 the 7-block radius between 18th and Lowry along Johnson gets a lot of attention from the second precinct.

“I would like to see some action, somebody is going to get killed,” Therkelsen said.

From the beginning of March to mid-August, police have pulled over 10 suspicious vehicles and have made a whopping 147 traffic violation stops.  Not to mention, at least every three months ward 1 councilman Kevin Reich gets the same message— “Johnson doesn’t add to my livability, it detracts.”

Meeting with citizens, Minneapolis engineers, public works and police is just one stop on the road of joining forces to calm traffic and maybe even save lives.  Or at least stop disrupting them.

“We need to do something, and we need to do something before winter,” Therkelsen said.

Tuesday’s conversation at the neighborhood meeting centered on short-term solutions -- those include installing speedometers, traffic posts and increasing enforcement.  Meanwhile, councilman Reich adds the area is now on schedule to get fixed in 2018.