Booo! Screenshot/YouTube

Activists turn to creative videography in their efforts to allow fourplexes throughout the city.

For Minnesota’s “Yes In My Backyard” advocates, zoning is a blood sport.

Minneapolis lawmakers are weighting a proposal to change the city’s zoning regulations governing the construction of fourplexes—small apartment buildings with four units. As the Minneapolis Star-Tribune reported, this would be “a historic rewriting of the zoning rules that would allow property owners to build fourplexes on any residential property in the city. The city’s current zoning prohibits them from roughly two-thirds of Minneapolis and more than 80 percent of its lots.”

The coming referendum on the character of the city has pro-density YIMBY activists who support the proposal ready to rumble, as the below video makes clear.

You see, the guy in the white undies is the city’s current zoning regulations, and the guy in the black pants is the YIMBY movement. When pants guy smashes undies guy, the result is “4PLEX.”

The video goes on to explain how fourplexes could help relieve the affordability crisis in Minneapolis by providing housing for four big-time-wrestling-dude families instead of just one. These kind of buildings already exist throughout that Upper Midwestern metropolis, but new ones can no longer be built in most neighborhoods, due to “decades of downzoning.” What’s more, fourplexes are almost always cheaper than single family homes or downtown high-rises—for wrestlers and regular Minnesotans alike.

The video comes from an upstart sardonic hyperlocal news-and-advocacy entity known as Wedge LIVE, whose mission is to “cover the the issues that are sending longtime residents over the edge.” Wedge LIVE’s creator, John Edwards, is also co-founder of the Minneapolis activist group Neighbors for More Neighbors, which is currently mobilizing around the fourplex proposal. (Reached for comment via Email, Edwards explained that "[p]eople who are against legalizing fourplexes prefer a zoning code that encourages exclusive neighborhoods and favors luxury forms of development like giant single-family homes.”)

These groups follow in the footsteps of YIMBY groups in other cities that have used provocative and often silly tactics to draw attention to their cause:

In a matter of years, this movement has gone from a rag-tag group of activists to a bona fide political movement, represented by powerful politicians like Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey and California State Senator Scott Wiener. Whatever the YIMBYs are doing, it seems to be working.

via GIPHY

About the Author

Most Popular

  1. A photo-illustration of several big-box retail stores.
    Equity

    After the Retail Apocalypse, Prepare for the Property Tax Meltdown

    Big-box retailers nationwide are slashing their property taxes through a legal loophole known as "dark store theory." For the towns that rely on that revenue, this could be a disaster.

  2. A photo of a mural in Tulsa, Oklahoma.
    Life

    Stop Complaining About Your Rent and Move to Tulsa, Suggests Tulsa

    In an effort to beef up the city’s tech workforce, the George Kaiser Family Foundation is offering $10,000, free rent, and other perks to remote workers who move to Tulsa for a year.

  3. A photo of a small small house in San Francisco's Noe Valley that sold for $1.8 million in 2014.
    Equity

    Why Cities Must Tackle Single-Family Zoning

    As cities wake up to their housing crises, the problems with single-family-home residential zoning will become too egregious to ignore.

  4. Graphic designer Burton Kramer thumbs through the pages of the CBC design standards manual he created.
    Design

    How Canada Discovered Its Visual Identity

    A documentary by Vancouver-based graphic designer Greg Durrell explores the surprisingly rich history behind the nation’s postwar design culture.

  5. A man walks down the Zeedjik.
    Equity

    How a Dutch Housing Agency Rescued an Amsterdam Street From the Drug Trade

    Frustrated by rampant heroin trade, residents of the street Zeedijk forced a public-private real-estate partnership to protect the street while preventing community displacement.