MPR's Tim Nelson will be on All Things Considered this afternoon to talk about the change outside the Xcel Energy Center, where the Republicans will hold their national convention later this month.
Tim put together this spiffy view of the place.
"The photo was taken this morning from a parking ramp near the site. In the foreground is the Cleveland Circle parking lot, about where the Ice Palace stood in 2004. The large white structure under construction in the foreground will house FoxNews. The ABC television network is also expected to set up operations at this site," Tim reports.
Very cool webcam - this might be as close as we can get to the event, huh? I have friends who live right near the cathedral in DT St. Paul and the prospect of having to pass through a security check point to visit them (as I have heard discussed) is rather unsettling. I'm curious about how much the preparations for RNC here in the Twin Cities differ from the DNC preparations in Denver. There has been a lot of talk about security and protestors at both events. I haven't seen anything written about it how the two compare.
Protests at Democratic conventions, especially when there isn't a sitting Democrat in the White House, tend to be pretty tame. Boston had one half-hearted March on the Sunday before. Other than that, a few Abu Ghraib protests was about it. I suspect it'll be much the same in Denver.
The checkpoint lines are to be announced next week. I DOUBT they'll extend onto Cathedral Hill. The biggest problem people are going to experience isn't checkpoints. It's lane closings and road closings.
If past conventions are any indications, one lane of 94 and roads to the Xcel will be closed when delegates are heading to the convention for the nightly activities. And while the convention is in progress each night, there'll be some road closings. But it's night in downtown St. Paul -- there's not THAT much traffic anyway. And it'll be temporary.
I'm willing to bet that St. Paulites will adjust to the situation rather quickly. Minneapolitans? It'll take them longer. (g)
Of course it will take us (Minneapolitans) longer to adjust. The convention is in our city after all.