Broken Sign Inspires Brooklyn Park Resident to Create Something New
A sign at the corner of a Brooklyn Park neighborhood is in disarray. Though the city is taking it down, one neighbor is leading the charge to bring in something new.
For Andrea Wilson, living in Brooklyn Park as an adult is like taking a walk down memory lane.
“My family came here in ’95, this was all dirt road,” Wilson said. “It means a lot to me because I grew up here.”
Wilson said her Greenbrook Farms neighborhood has grown substantially over the years, with homes covering the ground of what used to be farmland.
One staple she remembers was its neighborhood sign at the corner of West Broadway and Maplebrook Terrace.
“I kind of feel like without the sign, the neighborhood does not have as much of an identity,” Wilson said.
Out With the Old
Jason Newby, Brooklyn Park’s inspections and environmental health manager, said his department received a complaint about the state of the sign.
It was showing its age and, as it turned out, was located on private property.
Newby explained that typically a homeowners association is responsible for neighborhood signs on private property. Greenbrook Farms doesn’t have an HOA. That made the homeowner responsible.
“In this case, the property owner decided to remove it,” Newby said.
The homeowner learned that the removal process was not as simple as it seemed.
“They tried to take it down themselves, and then they realized it was a much bigger process than they could handle,” Wilson said.
The homeowner and the city got in touch and now the city is helping take it out entirely. Newby said the process will begin any day now.
“The city is sort of playing a role in the removal of the sign, but any new sign or development on that parcel would have to go through the property owner,” Newby said. “It would be a private venture between that owner and those neighbors.”
Looking for a Sign
The possibility of a future sign inspired Wilson to create something new: a neighborhood connection.
“It is kind of like a missing piece out of the puzzle,” Wilson said. “It has been there for 30 years, so I feel like there should be something still there; not nothing.”
Wilson said the property owner is on board. Where the new sign will go exactly is undecided.
“It is cool to come through here,” Wilson said. “It’s the span of two decades.”
Wilson remembers the neighborhood’s past as she seeks to share its identity for decades to come.