MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — A year after George Floyd’s death at 38th and Chicago, the city of Minneapolis is still trying to figure out what to do with the area.
Both the mayor and chief of police have called for the intersection to be opened. But a year later, George Floyd Square remains barricaded, with rising gun violence, and no police presence.READ MORE: Security Ramping Up Ahead Of Derek Chauvin's Sentencing
Is there a plan to change that anytime soon?
The corner of 38th and Chicago is where two city council wards and four neighborhood associations intersect.
People who live and work here have been in talks with city government about what’s next for the area.
“We have to make sure that we are not looking for answer, but there’s answers to this,” said Carmen Means.
Means, executive director of the Central Neighborhood Association, believes investment in the community is the first step in meeting the challenges of this neighborhood.
“We have been very clear about the divestment that has been coming out of our community, but where is the investment? We need jobs in our community. Have we dealt with the side effects of COVID-19? And we are dealing with a traumatized community,” Means said.
A shooting early morning Tuesday, there were more gunshots that night.READ MORE: Mitchell Hamline School Of Law Offers Class On Derek Chauvin Trial
“How something like that can happen and then the place not even get cleared and folks filled back up. And I think there is a disconnect, some of that may be survival, a lot of that is trauma. But the bigger part is have we normalized gun violence and is that part of the reason why there is not a race to the cure once the city council deemed gun violence or violence period a public health crisis,” Means said.
“We’ve been working really hard,” said City Council Vice President Andrea Jenkins.
Jenkins has been working with neighborhood association leaders on what’s needed to reconnect 38th and Chicago with the rest of the community.
“We’re calling the 38th Street Thrive plan which calls for community investment, job training, affordable housing, home ownership opportunities, a community co-op. It’s time to get to work,” Jenkins said.
With no concrete plan to reconnect the area in sight, Jenkins has an idea she believes will satisfy most.
“In the long-term, a transit-only solution is probably the best thing for kind of that two block area, something very similar to how Nicollet Mall is transportation only,” said Jenkins.
Jenkins says her plan includes a permanent memorial to George Floyd and others who lost their lives due to police violence.MORE NEWS: AG Ellison Seeks Comments From Community Leading Into Derek Chauvin's Sentencing
Neighborhood association leaders say its almost a 50-50 split between people who want the intersection open and those who don’t.