Sage-Martinson to start as development director

Jonathan Sage-Martinson, who helped St. Paul neighborhoods adjust to the development of the light-rail line, will take over Monday as the city’s new planning and economic development director.

He has more than 15 years of community and economic development experience, most recently as director of the Central Corridor Funders Collaborative, a group of local and national foundations formed to help University Avenue neighborhoods benefit from the Green Line. That experience should serve him well in working with Mayor Chris Coleman, who maintains that light rail is transforming downtown and the Midway district by stimulating private investment. The Funders Collaborative closely tracked jobs, businesses and housing in the Green Line corridor.

Sage-Martinson, 44, lives in St. Paul’s Highland Park area.



North suburbs

Meetings will discuss Ebola outbreak in Africa

State and local officials plan a pair a pair of informational meetings this week to discuss the Ebola virus outbreak that has killed several hundred people in three West African nations.

Several northern suburbs have large populations of West African immigrants.

The first meeting will be 6 to 8 p.m. Sunday at the Brooklyn Park Community Activity Center, 5600 85th Ave. N. It will be led by Brooklyn Park Fire Chief Ken Prillaman.

The second meeting will be from 6:30 to 8 p.m. Wednesday at the Brooklyn Center Community Activities, Recreation and Services Department, 6301 Shingle Creek Parkway, and will include experts from the Minnesota Department of Health.

Shannon Prather



Public invited to opening of Mpls. service center

The public is invited to gather from 6 to 8 p.m. Thursday to mark the grand opening of Hennepin County’s third regional human services center, which serves north Minneapolis. The celebration and ribbon-cutting are at 1001 Plymouth Av. N.

County staffers have been working at the site since late June.

The transit-friendly center is part of a plan to expand human services access from offices in downtown Minneapolis to six sites across the county, closer to where residents live, work and attend school.

Two other human services offices are in operation in Brooklyn Center and Bloomington. A west suburban office in Hopkins will open in the fall.

Two more locations, serving central and northeast Minneapolis and south Minneapolis, are planned for 2015 and 2016.




Two play areas open at Minnehaha Falls Park

Minnehaha Falls Regional Park held a grand opening for two new play areas Thursday.

The Minneapolis park system’s first universal access play area, located at the Wabun Picnic Area, includes significantly more options for disabled children, including more ramps, paths and rubberized surfaces. The play area features a 1930s-inspired play car and camper, as well as tents and “cabinlike” spaces.

The second playground, located near the band shell at the North Plateau, underwent renovations for safety. Built in 1906, it was one of the first park sites to receive swings and a merry-go-round, the park board said.

Volunteer committee Falls 4 All helped raise more than $450,000 to help build the universal play area.

Liz Sawyer