The Metropolitan Council approved nearly half a million dollars in Livable Communities grants to help local communities plan for development around future transit lines and for other predevelopment activities.
The Council awarded Brooklyn Center and Burnsville a transit-oriented development (TOD) grant of $60,000 each to help implement zoning changes to better integrate transit in the city’s local land use planning. Both communities are anticipating future transit enhancements — C Line bus rapid transit in Brooklyn Center and Orange Line bus rapid transit in Burnsville.
The Council also awarded three predevelopment grants totaling nearly $300,000 to projects that would increase density and promote efficient land use, as well as diversity among housing types and affordability in the central cities.
“These grants will help launch initiatives that are still very early in the planning stages to help ensure that subsequent development gets off on the right footing,” said Council Chair Harry Melander. “Investing in local projects like these encourages prosperity through development and redevelopment, and promotes better connections between jobs, housing, services, and transit.”
The Livable Communities program was created in 1995. Since then, the Council has approved grants totaling more than $374 million to assist projects that have created or retained more than 52,000 jobs; cleaned up 2,300 acres of polluted property for redevelopment; created or preserved more than 22,000 affordable homes; and leveraged billions in additional public and private funds.
TOD Zoning grants
Brooklyn Center TOD Zoning, Brooklyn Center: $60,000 to help develop and write the city’s TOD Zoning Ordinance to lend guidance to local planning and land use decision making to better integrate transit service and surrounding development expected near the C Line bus rapid transit.
TOD Zoning-Burnsville Orange Line Stations, Burnsville: $60,000 to help develop, write and promote engagement around the city’s zoning ordinance. The city plans to create a new TOD zoning district that would apply to station areas near the future Orange Line Bus Rapid Transit corridor.
Upper Rice Street Site, Saint Paul: $99,600 for public engagement and planning activities to support this mixed-use, mixed-income development. The proposed project would include 60 market-rate and affordable homes, community and public outdoor space, as well as office space.
Ford Site Redevelopment, Saint Paul: $100,000 to facilitate the environmental review of the redevelopment of the 122-acre Ford plant site. The project proposes a mix of affordable and market-rate housing options, business space, pedestrian boulevards and connections to the Mississippi River.
Grain Belt Redevelopment, Minneapolis: $100,000 for design work on the proposed redevelopment of a 3.37-acre site in Northeast Minneapolis. The project includes a mix of housing options and commercial space, and a pedestrian boulevard that includes amenities and connects housing, retail and the Mississippi River.