This is next to Bassett Creek, but also quite a wonderful water feature on its own, at least for the sewer cover set.
One of the weirdest bits about gamifying the city to make it more fun to walk is how the games become real; our choices shape us. Deciding to see sewer covers was something of a conscious decision for me, walking the same car-centric community corridors over and over—I figured out earlier this year that I probably walk 500 miles a year on just the ~3 mile stretch of Hennepin that Minneapolis is responsible for designing. It’s one of the most interesting streets in our city, but it’s still a street where people are hit and severely injured by drivers on the regular, where drivers have attacked me and people I know and love, where I’m almost as likely to be called unrepeatable names as I cross the street as I am to run into a friend.
Sewer covers are my infrastructure talisman; my pedestrian-exclusive beauty; a connection to the world beneath the world beneath my feet; a reminder of the wonder of public works at its best, focused on public health and environmental protection, not moving disconnected drivers through my community fast enough to kill my neighbors.
That’s a powerful legacy for a bunch of iron ground circles, and it’s deserving of a fountain, even if it’s an accidental one tucked behind half-hearted detour signs during construction in a park.