Macalester-Groveland, Merriam Park, Lexington-Hamline, Como Park
Cleveland Avenue, because of its proximity to my house, is the north-south street on which I ride most often. Despite that, I am still surprised by a sight or two on or near Cleveland. On Selby Avenue, three houses east of Cleveland, is a home and yard dedicated to honoring the United States military.
Lex-Ham (Lexington Hamline)
After months of inconvenient detours, noise and dust, the Snelling Avenue bridge over I-94 was fewer than 24 hours from opening. Crews gathered up stray construction materials and completed other minor tasks.
The stretch of Snelling Avenue between Selby and University is one of the busiest in Saint Paul. (The Snelling-University intersection is often erroneously identified as the busiest in Minnesota.)
There are places in Saint Paul that are separated by barriers – natural and man-made – which make them essentially unknown to anyone but residents. One of those in Como is six abbreviated north-south streets, bounded by Chatsworth to the west, Como Avenue to the north and east, and busy Burlington Northern Santa Fe tracks on the south.
Working from west to east, Kilburn Street was the first I investigated. I snapped a couple of shots of 1092 Kilburn because of the prodigious pile of logs methodically stacked along the side of the house.
Kilburn, Ryde, and Colne are unusual street names so I turned to the ever present “The Street Where You Live” by Don Empson. Colne and Ryde, says Empson, were named in 1885 after cities in Lancaster County, England, while Kilburn, also christened in 1885, comes from a section of London.
The corner of Como Place and Como Avenue is an interesting spot. The picture taken from Como Avenue and the street in the background is Como Avenue.
Usually, Saint Paul street signs with black print on a white background denote honorary street names. I have no idea why the Como Place sign shares the same color scheme.
A couple of blocks to the northeast of the Como Avenue-Como Place intersection is this unusual and beautiful school. You might be surprised by the name of the school. Or not, if you’ve caught on to the theme in the area. Como Park Elementary opened in 1917, with the first expansion in 1924.
I admit that I am captivated by sights that many would probably consider mundane. I see them on a majority of the rides. One example from today is the neighborhood of six streets between Como Avenue and the railroad tracks, especially Victoria Street with its gravel surface and old wood curbs. Then there is the unusual signage in the same area. It is curiosities like these that contribute to Saint Paul’s identity and allure. If you’d like to share a sight, big or small, at which you marvel, please comment so I can check it out.
As usual, I’ll close with a link to the map of this ride.
Always fascinating. I had no idea there was an unpaved street in that area.
Victoria is so short there that it’s barely a street. Do you know when the city stopped using wood for curbs?
Wolfie, you’re not the only one captivated by “mundane” stuff. I love your blog and I’m always excited when a new post appears. Thanks, and keep it up.
Bill, I appreciate your support of my ‘mundaneness’ or ‘mundanity’ or whatever the correct word is. Thank you for taking the time to read the blog and to share your feelings. It means a great deal to me.
When I read your posts, I get the sense that there is more that you know, discovered, or thought about. The pics are nice, but your writing puts it all into context. Would love to see more of your words to go with the pictures.
Thanks for the suggestion, John. Pictures often tell a story better, but I’m trying to insert more analysis and/or opinions.
I’m reading this post more than 7 years after it was published, but I’m hoping the unpaved street and wooden curbs still exist! Not mundane at all.