Project Updates: Lake Street Reconstruction & Streetscaping

Roadway Layouts Due for Decision in March

Community members discuss Lake Street reconstruction issues in groups facilitated by PAC representatives and project staff.

Community members discuss Lake Street reconstruction issues in groups facilitated by PAC representatives and project staff.

Updated 03/04—Roadway design, which has been the planning focus for the past year, topped the agenda at four well-attended public meetings held in late February for the Lake Street Reconstruction & Streetscaping project.

The Project Advisory Committee (PAC), a 30-member body representing neighborhood, business and institutional interests, has narrowed the field of road layouts and will consider input collected at the meetings when making its final recommendations in mid-March.

The February meetings also introduced streetscaping concepts that will be a focus of this year’s planning.

The McKnight Foundation recently retained local consultants to review the concept alternatives with the project team and PAC members. The design review will figure into the PAC’s deliberations in March to recommend a preferred alternative, and also help to inform Minneapolis’ policy on design of urban arterial corridors.

“With a project of this scale and lasting impact, we need to make sure we have the best affordable design possible,” said Hennepin County Commissioner Gail Dorfman. “We’re fortunate that McKnight’s president, Rip Rapson, understands the multiple community benefits of good urban design, and that he has made foundation resources available here.”

The $25 million construction will take place in 2005-2007. More information: www.lakestreet.info.

Midtown Greenway

CEPRO Elevator to Fall; Phase II Opening Set for October

03/04—Before the snows set in, construction crews hauled fill into the trench from the current Greenway terminus at 5th Avenue eastward to Hiawatha Avenue. Crews are now set to build retaining walls and the paved trail. Installation of lighting, surveillance and emergency-call stations will complete Phase II of Greenway construction.

This new stretch of trail is expected to open in October 2004, extending the Greenway's length to 2.5 miles.

The demolition of the old CEPRO grain elevator at 10th Avenue will occur from March through May in coordination with Greenway construction, and crushed concrete from the CEPRO structure will be re-used to build the Greenway.  

Meanwhile, the MCW Partnership has urged the State Historic Preservation Office's active cooperation with staff from the City of Minneapolis, Hennepin County and Ryan Companies in developing landscaping, artwork and publicly accessible open space at the Greenway's interface with the Midtown Exchange development.

“All of us have recognized that the historic nature of the Greenway landscape dictates respect for the shape of the excavated trench and the elegant linear armature of the bridges over the Greenway,” noted MCW chair Jim Campbell in a letter to SHPO.

“We are committed to preserving these historic qualities, while we also seek to design and promote the Greenway and adjacent properties as a vital multi-modal corridor that supports transportation, recreation, and economic development.”