The Metropolitan Council, on June 12, approved Livable Communities grants to set the stage for planned development in Brooklyn Center, Hopkins, Minneapolis and Saint Paul.
The predevelopment grants total $432,000, which will help pay for activities like engaging residents, planning stormwater management systems and developing concept plans.
“The Council and these grants play a significant role in the array of partnerships that is needed to advance development projects in the region,” said Council Chair Nora Slawik. “It is this seed funding that helps get the projects off the ground.”
Monarch Park, Brooklyn Center--$60,000 for site planning, financial analysis and community engagement for a proposed mixed-use, mixed-income development with retail and commercial space, workforce development center, multi-family housing and a public plaza at 57th and Logan Avenues.
Upper Harbor Terminal, Minneapolis--$100,000 for stormwater analysis and community engagement for a proposed development on a 48-acre industrial site. Mixed-income residential units and park land will connect to nearby neighborhoods and regional park and trail amenities along the Mississippi River.
Ford Site Redevelopment, Saint Paul--$100,000 for design of a stormwater system that will serve as a large, central amenity and water feature, and restore Hidden Falls Creek at the site of the planned redevelopment on the 122-acre site.
422 West University Avenue, Saint Paul--$100,000 for community engagement, a market study and development of site plan concepts for redevelopment at the site, which contains the Little Mekong Market. Concept plans include replacing failing buildings with mixed-use development including an indoor/outdoor market, gathering spaces, offices and apartments.
Hopkins Artspace, Hopkins—$72,000 for community engagement and development of site plan concepts for a development that provides affordable housing for artists to complement the art economy. The development is next to the Lake Minnetonka LRT Regional Trail, which will connect to the future Downtown Hopkins METRO Green Line Station.
“The success of Livable Communities funding over the 24-year history of the program is impressive,” said Met Council Member Robert Lilligren. “Projects that the Council has invested in span the region. They include Northern Stacks in Fridley, Boatworks Commons in White Bear Lake, Excelsior and Grand in St. Louis Park, and Heart of the City in Burnsville, to name a few.”
Lilligren says the Council, this year, is making more than $21 million available to communities participating in the Livable Communities Program.
Funds promote livability, choices and economic development
The funds promote livability, a mix of housing choices and affordability, jobs and local economic development by supporting projects that:
Clean up polluted land for redevelopment.
Create or preserve affordable housing.
Incorporate design that helps connect people to places and makes efficient use of land and infrastructure.
Help create transit-oriented development around transit stations.
To date, the program has awarded $374 million in Livable Communities funds to help clean up 2,400 acres of polluted land; create or retain more than 55,000 full- and part-time jobs; build or rehabilitate more than 41,562 market-rate and affordable homes; increase the net tax capacity by more than $116 million; and leverage billions in additional public and private investment.