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Duluth Honking House Hearing

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Did anyone go to tonight’s Duluth City Council meeting to watch the show as the council debated potential parking restrictions on Skyline Parkway near the infamous Honking House? (Back story found on this post, including a link for the even further back story.)

Or did you all stay home and ironically watch part two of Ken Burns’ documentary The National Parks: America’s Best Idea?

The council voted unanimously against the two resolutions.

(The original  resolution was split into two to clarify two distinct areas. Resolution 600a referred to the scenic overlook about .73 miles east of 40th Ave. W. Resolution 600b referred to the pull-off area in front of the Honking House.)

No citizens spoke in favor or against the resolutions, but Councilor Sharla Gardner noted that the council received “hundreds” of e-mails and phone calls.

Councilors Jay Fosle and Gary Eckenberg spoke strongly against both resolutions. Councilor Garry Krause said if such a policy were made it should be citywide and not just in one area. Councilor Gardner sounded as if she might vote in favor of the resolution for the pull-off area, but ultimately voted against it. None of the other councilors commented.

Here’s what Councilor Gardner said about the pull-off area:

“If we look at working with the parking commission to review something, that does not mean that we are OKing it. It just means that maybe this issue does need to be reviewed. If there are places that were made by citizens — places to park that were not sanctioned by the city — then that should be looked at and reviewed.”

Perhaps Councilor Gardner was confused by Councilor Cuneo referring to the road in front of the Honking House and other spots like it as “pull-off areas that have been kind of citizen made or unplanned by the city.”

Councilor Eckenberg clarified that later, pointing out that the pull offs are simply the shoulder of the road. Most of Skyline does not have a shoulder, but certain areas do, so that people can pull off and park to appreciate the scenery. There’s nothing “citizen made” about them.

32 Comments

vicarious

about 9 years ago

Oh, you mean: The National Parks: Ken Burns' Most Boring Documentary to Date?

Followed by: Ken Burns: What's with the Haircut?

zra

about 9 years ago

@ vicarious: hhhhhhiiiiiiiiiiiiissssssssssss!!!

Horn if you're Honky

about 9 years ago

Unfortunately I can't make the city council meeting. I have some online shopping to do:

http://www.hornblasters.com/
The Loudest Train Horn Kits Ever Made
Train horns have always been what we did best. We wanted to bring the real sound of a locomotive right to your vehicle and thats exactly what we do. We deliver the loudest train horn kits you can buy with the best service possible.

Our train horn kits are simply ridiculous! We sell the same horns used on real trains and trust us, they are the loudest train horns money can buy.

pH

about 9 years ago

Interested to see if it even gets one vote in favor.

If you ask for the 'Ken Burns' at Great Clips, they just clamp the clippers to the counter and push your head side to side. It's a slow process, but never too uncomfortable.

Rob

about 9 years ago

The National Parks.  Not boring.  And it is ironic Paul.  Nice and timely connection.

The City Council will not bow to the property owner.

Ramos

about 9 years ago

Note to the owners of the Honking House: You know how somebody drove by your house and yelled "NINE-OH, BABY!" immediately following the council's vote? That wasn't me.

vicarious

about 9 years ago

Z! You know you agree! Just admit it and life will be easier.

Mary

about 9 years ago

I also thought the National Parks Documentary was NOT boring.  Watching it makes me want to visit some of these amazing places: Yosemite and Crater Lake, in particular.

bill

about 9 years ago

I also unironically enjoy "National Parks."

rediguana

about 9 years ago

General public: 1 Rich bitches: 0

edgeways

about 9 years ago

I like the Parks show as well. The large dose of rah rah America is a little tiresome, but everything else is good.

brian

about 9 years ago

I wish I could have seen the National Parks Documentary.
And I wish a Ken Burns haircut was an option for me. Not that I would use the option, it'd just be a better option than I currently have.

Resolutionary

about 9 years ago

The rich, oppressed, scenic-vista-owning minority is revolting via the DNT comment section.  John Muir, my new hero (thanks to Ken Burn's ALWAYS right-on documentoring), said it's an inevitable reaction when the public asserts their interests.

Then again we could privatize (early Niagara style) all the scenic overlooks on Skyline to let the free market determine the real value of the vistas by charging residents and tourists to view the overlooks.

pH

about 9 years ago

In the spirit of Niagara, the Honking House wax museum and trinket emporium?

Dave Sorensen

about 9 years ago

Now we can start looking into whether that wall obscuring the view from a National Scenic Byway is there legally.

Barrett Chase

about 9 years ago

Amen, Dave. This is exactly what should be done.

Barrett Chase

about 9 years ago

Gah! Well, OK then.

Dave Sorensen

about 9 years ago

May I ask how/where you found out? Thanks.

Chris

about 9 years ago

According to the DNT, they had all the proper permits for the house and the fence.

the doog

about 9 years ago

Clever landscaping would have been a better solution than all of this. They could have planted buffer trees between the house and overlook. I think the issue they might have been concerned with is the late night drinking that goes on at the pullouts if the cig butts and beer trash are any indication. Some people are pigs.

Paul Lundgren

about 9 years ago

I shouldn't have definitively wrote that the wall is legal, because what is and isn't legal is always up for debate, isn't it?

I have no idea if there are laws/guidelines concerning wall construction along a National Scenic Byway.

My only source affirming that the wall is legal is Councilor Eckenberg, who said at the council meeting that he asked Duluth Fire Chief John Strongitharm about whether the wall was "in the right of way" of Skyline. Eckenberg said Strongitharm told him it was not.

So, I guess I shouldn't really put that out there as an expert opinion on whether the wall is legal, but I'm inclined to believe it is.

adam

about 9 years ago

I'd be inclined to believe no one did their homework on laws/guidelines concerning wall construction along a National Scenic Byway. City and state, yes. National, I doubt it.

I wonder what the Internets has to say?

Dave Sorensen

about 9 years ago

That is funny, Adam. Those damn internets.

pH

about 9 years ago

I think development rules still go back to local government/zoning. Otherwise I'd expect the Scenic Byway Program to be directly involved with permitting.  Their function seems to be mostly tourism promotion, not regulation.

Jeff

about 9 years ago

I passed through Duluth this summer and thought it looked quite lovely, too! I do hope you make it out here to Crater Lake National Park! Check out our webcam and more at www.craterlaketrust.org.

PartsGuy

about 9 years ago

I hereby swear that the next time I'm in Duluth, I will make a special trip by this place and lay on my air horns.

Believe it.

Cory

about 9 years ago

These people should have done some due diligence before building a house in a place they had to have known would cause controversy.

They were warned by builders and other residence that building there would be a bad idea. (just hearsay) They said something to the effect of; No one will notice the house, it will blend into the hillside when completed.

Even though it isn't a designated green space, have some common sense. The parkway, noise and, yes, even parties were there well before they built. Money can't take away that.

Now the fence and they asked to close the overlook at night. These people really are trying there best to make friends.

Anyway I kinda feel like they asked for it.

To the home owners:

Don't cry to the city now because of your ignorance. You should have spent some of that money to make a more informed decision if building there is a good choice instead of that extra bathroom and incredibly intrusive fence. 

Of course you had the right to build there seeing it was zoned residential but it still was a choice to build there.

Good choices lead to good consequences...
Bad choices lead to bad consequences...

Dulusion

about 9 years ago

What's going to happen to that fence this winter when the snowplows need to deposit the snow on that side of the road? Perhaps that fence will be a bygone.

Ronald Reagan

about 9 years ago

Mr. Agenter ... tear down that wall!

pH

about 9 years ago

Watching the National Parks series... something to think about... parks aren't zoned into existence. You need to take an ultra-wealthy industrialist hiking. 

I think you have to look beyond zoning, if zero development of private land is desired. It starts to become an issue of ownership. Perhaps other vacant Skyline parcels could be acquired through a voluntary land swap, or with land sale proceeds.

O.G.Duluthian

about 9 years ago

I think that all of the private citizens that are against this type of development along the skyline should get together and buy the vacant land so that someone else does not come along and buy land that is currently zoned for such development and build on it.

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