GrowingMinneapolis: News from City of Minneapolis Community Planning and Economic Development

Growing MPLS

June 2015

Upcoming Events

Investing in a Stronger Workforce: Northside Achievement Zone

Thursday, June 11, 8am-9:30am
Jax Café
1928 University Avenue Northeast
Minneapolis, MN 55418

Members: $20
Non-members: $25

Speakers will talk about the Northside Achievement Zone model and its support for the educational achievement of children in North Minneapolis, the current return on investment, and why businesses should pay attention.

Email Christine Levens with questions.
Registration Link

Live on the Drive Concerts

Visit the eighth annual Live on the Drive concert series. There are three free events with live music, food vendors, and a movie at dusk.

June 11, 6pm-8pm
July 9, 6pm-8pm
August 13, 6pm-8pm
34th Avenue North & Victory Memorial Parkway
More Information

Northern Spark Art Fesitval

Saturday, June 13, 9pm-5:26am
Minneapolis, MN

Visit Northern Spark, an all-night art festival, when thousands of people gather throughout Minneapolis to explore the city’s great cultural institutions, play in temporary installations in the streets, and enjoy experimental performances in green spaces and under bridges.
More Information

Minneapolis History Pub Crawl: Washington Avenue

Discover Minneapolis' rich history with a history pub crawl along Washington Avenue. Registration is required, call 651-259-3015 or register online.

All from 6:30pm-9pm

  • June 16
  • June 30
  • July 14

MNHS Members: $20
Non-members: $25
More Information

Stone Arch Bridge Festival

June 17-June 20: Riverfront Concert Series on
Water Power Park
June 20-June 21: Artwork, Family Activities and Music

Come join a weekend of art and music on the Minneapolis Riverfront.
More Information

“Fix-It Tech” Event

Friday, June 26, 11am-3pm
EMERGE Career Technology Center
1834 Emerson Avenue North
Minneapolis, MN 55411

Volunteers will be present to repair computers, laptops, smartphones, and tablets and give technical advice. The consultation and labor is free, but parts will be available for purchase.
More Information

Taco Tour on Lake Street

Saturday, June 27, 10am-5pm
Lake Street (from Tinto Cocina + Cantina to La Alborada Market)
More Information

Twin Cities Pride Festival

Saturday, June 27, 10am-10pm
Sunday, June 28, 10am-6pm
Loring Park
1382 Willow Street
Minneapolis, MN 55403

The Pride Festival features over 400 exhibitors, 40 food and beverage booths, 20 sponsors, and over 300,000 visitors who participate in this free celebration of the Gay Lesbian Bisexual Transgender (GLBT) community.
More Information

Twin Cities' Roots, Rock, and Deep Blues Festival

Saturday, July 19, 1pm-10pm
Minneapolis, MN

Advance: $15
At the door: $20

The Fourth Annual Twin Cities’ Roots, Rock, and Deep Blues Festival is featuring more than thirty bands on five different stages. Supported by the City of Minneapolis Great Streets program, the festival is a way of promoting business in the Longfellow neighborhood. Gates open at noon, music begins at 1pm.
More Information


Saveur's 'Next Great American Food City' is…

The Minneapolis-St. Paul area has steadily improved its national dining cred in recent years, and this month the metro earned some big applause from foodie bible Saveur magazine, which named Minneapolis "the next great American food city." Read More

Minneapolis is Top 20 in Worldwide Bike-Friendly Cities Rankings

The latest recognition is from the Copenhagenize Design Co., a Danish design firm that annually publishes a worldwide index of bike-friendly cities. Minneapolis, the only city from the US, is No. 18 on the list, which is led by Copenhagen, Denmark, and two Dutch cities: Amsterdam and Utrecht.
Read More

New and Expanding Businesses







Unemployment Stats for Minneapolis

The April 2015 unemployment rate for Minneapolis is 3.3%, down from March’s 3.7%. The federal government’s estimate of the Minneapolis labor force is 230,784, with 7,705 unemployed and actively looking for work. The year-over-year trend for April shows both increased labor force participation (adding over 3,000 to the labor force) and lower unemployment by .4%, both indicating confidence in the local and regional economy.

Trending: The current 3.3% unemployment rate represents the fourth lowest unemployment rate for Minneapolis over the last nine years. Outside of a 3.0% unemployment rate in fall 2014 that had lower labor force participation, April 2015 represents the continued confidence by both job seekers and employers of economic growth this spring. Nationally, the April unemployment rate of 5.4% was essentially unchanged from the months before. Minnesota as a state continues to outperform the nation and the midwest as a whole, which had an April unemployment rate of 5%.          

Find more local unemployment rate information.

Contact CPED

612-673-5001 or 311

Staff Directory

Crown Roller Mill
Executive Administration
105 Fifth Avenue South #200
Minneapolis, MN 55401

Public Service Center
Development Services'
Customer Service Center
250 South Fourth Street
(Room 300)
Minneapolis, MN 55415
Map and Parking

City Hall
Business Licensing
350 South 5th Street
Minneapolis, MN 55415

Business Profile: Terzo Vino Bar

Terzo collage
Terzo Vino Bar

Located at 50th and Penn in South Minneapolis, Terzo Vino Bar is the Broder family’s third restaurant on the same street corner (in addition to Broders' Pasta Bar and Cucina Italiana). With 33 years of restaurant experience in South Minneapolis, Molly Broder along with her sons, Thomas, Charlie and Danny, opened Terzo in 2012 with a wine-focused, seasonal menu and dedication to quality ingredients.

Current menu items include lamb sliders, antipasti misti (prosciutto, mozzarella di bufala, smashed peas, and mint), and panzanella di aragosta (a poached lobster tail salad, potato, celery, arugula and capers). In addition, last summer, Terzo also added Porchetteria, a lunchtime take-out window, facing a new outdoor patio that serves porchetta (an Italian-style pork roast) sandwiches to walk-up customers.

The City helped facilitate the growth of both Broder’s Pasta Bar and Terzo with a low interest loan and a $5,000 façade matching grant. Since opening, Terzo has received positive feedback, great neighborhood support, and a local clientele, including many who have been fans of Broder restaurants for decades. 

Broadway Flats Brings New Housing, Retail and Revitalization to West Broadway

Broadway Flats Collage
Special invited guests celebrate ground breaking of Broadway Flats on May 21 (Top) Rendering showing the planned façade of the Broadway Flats development (Bottom)

On Wednesday, May 27th, the North Minneapolis community celebrated the groundbreaking for Broadway Flats, a $25 million development that will include space, 103 units of workforce housing, and a Metro Transit shelter. Located at the intersection of Penn Avenue North and West Broadway, the new development is expected to help revitalize the Northside.

In 2011, many of the original buildings in the Broadway Flats location, including Broadway Liquor Outlet, were destroyed by a tornado. The Rose Family, who owned the original buildings, chose to rebuild in the same location in partnership with Lupe Development and Minnesota Attainable Housing Corporation. In addition, local agencies such as the Metropolitan Council, the City of Minneapolis, Hennepin County, Minnesota Housing, and DEED partnered to bring Broadway Flats from concept to construction.

The community is very excited about this project because of the positive changes it is expected to bring, from new North Minneapolis residents to more retail businesses.

Business Profile: Unison Comfort Technologies

Unison Comfort Technologies collage
Top: Celebrating recent expansion; Bottom: Inside Unison Comfort Technologies

Unison Comfort Technologies, headquartered in North Minneapolis, is a heating, ventilating and air conditioning (HVAC) manufacturer that provides energy-efficient solutions for large, commercial buildings such as schools, shopping malls and data centers. A division of the Greenbeck Group, Unison also has locations in California and Tennessee and is the parent of three brands: Innovent Air Handling Equipment, Precision Coils and Valent Air Management Systems.

Since its launch in 2010, Unison has experienced rapid growth, generating $125 million annual revenue and employing over 300 people in Minneapolis. Due to an increasing demand for HVAC products, the company recently announced a $627,000 expansion, which they held a grand opening celebration for on May 8. To support this expansion, Unison has received a $400,000 grant from the Minnesota Job Creation fund.  It has also taken advantage of a City of Minneapolis Grow North loan that encourages the hiring of Northside residents and following green construction practices.

Looking to the future, Unison plans to continue on the growth path, adhering to its values of customer satisfaction, efficient technology and quality products.

2nd Annual Lake Street Taco Tour Planned for June 27

Taco Tour Collage
Photos from 2014 Taco Tour

The Taco Tour on Lake Street is back for its second year. With more than 1,500 participants last year, the Taco Tour was a huge success. The event was proposed by the Latino Economic Development Center (LEDC) in 2014 and made possible in part by support by a grant from the City of Minneapolis Great Streets program as a way to promote the diverse business community in the East Lake Street Corridor.

This year, nine authentic restaurants are offering their versions of delicious tacos. Come taste what your community has to offer. Whether you’re coming by bike, by shuttle bus, or by foot, this family-friendly event will give you a great opportunity to taste authentic Latin cuisine and experience all Lake Street has to offer. Register for the Lake Street Taco Tour today!

Saturday, June 27, 10am-5pm
Lake Street (from Tinto Cocina + Cantina to La Alborada Market)
View Map

Click here for more information.

Minneapolis Workforce Council Member Helping to Revitalize West Broadway

Photo of Dr. Watson
Dr. Tara Watson

Chiropractor Dr. Tara Watson, a member of the Minneapolis Workforce Council, took a gamble and bought a building at Penn Avenue N. and W. Broadway Avenue, on the frayed east-west commercial artery of north Minneapolis. Six years later, Watson employs 40 people at Watson Chiropractic, Exceptional Home Health Care agency and an adjacent Anytime Fitness exercise club.

“What better way to help create a more vibrant Broadway than to get out and make it myself,” reasoned Watson.

Dr. Watson was raised in the Bronx, New York. She graduated from college in nursing from Seton Hall University thanks to academic and athletic scholarships, and moved here to attend chiropractic school.

Watson is president of the West Broadway Business and Area Coalition, a 200-plus member organization. She is also a leader in an effort to develop more retail, food, health and arts-related businesses in the area. In addition, Watson helps coach an inner-city youth track team.

Read about Tara and the other women who are working to revitalize West Broadway.

Find out more about the Minneapolis Workforce Council here

Downtown East Commons Design Concept Presented to the Public

Downtown East Commons Concept
The Commons Design Concept

On May 25th, the City of Minneapolis in partnership with Hargreaves Associates presented a concept design for the Downtown East Commons during a public meeting with over 150 attendees. The presentation, located at the Minneapolis Central Library, was the third in a series of public meetings to receive public feedback about the design and use for the new park.

The designers of the Commons envision a transformative, green space with features including a large lawn, garden zones, a Minnesota woodland area, natural landscaping, a water plaza with jets, and a multi-use pavilion. In addition, the design focuses on strong urban connections, with promenades that reach out to the city and the river along 4th and 5th street, adding a dynamic, all-season destination Downtown.

City staff and the Hargreaves team will use feedback from the meeting to continue to develop the concept design. Another public meeting is planned for later this summer to present the design progress. 

Visit the Downtown East Commons website to give feedback about the design

DEED Unveils Career Profile Tool

The Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED) recently unveiled Career Profile, a new data tool that helps students and job seekers learn about wages, educational requirements, job opening projections and other details related to hundreds of occupations.

The tool, available here, combines data from DEED’s Labor Market Information Office, the U.S. Census Bureau, the Bureau of Labor Statistics, and other federal and state agencies.

Career Profile users can conduct occupational searches for any one of Minnesota’s 13 Economic Development Regions. Once a user selects a region and occupation, an overview page will provide a description of the occupation, typical job titles, typical wages, current demand, expected 10-year openings, education requirements and top industries for the selected occupation. It will also connect the user to job openings for the selected occupation on DEED’s job bank and help users find assistance at their local Minnesota WorkForce Center.

2015 Minneapolis Heritage Preservation Award Recipients Announced

Heritage Preservation Award Winners 2015
2015 Heritage Preservation Award Winners

On May 21st, the 25th Annual Minneapolis Heritage Preservation Awards were announced during a luncheon at International Market Square. These awards, which were presented by Preservation Award partners Preserve Minneapolis, the Minneapolis Chapter of the American Institute of Architects (AIA), and the Minneapolis Heritage Preservation Commission, highlight achievements for transforming historic properties in a way that reflects their history. Judgments are based on the quality of design, architecture and materials used in addition to their positive impact on the surrounding community.

There were eight honors in four categories presented at the luncheon: ASI Turnblad Mansion Kitchen Restoration, Bennett-McBride House, Grain Belt Office Building Rehabilitation (a City of Minneapolis project), Sandbo Roof Replacement, and Valspar Headquarters/VAST Rehabilitation won for Historic Restoration, Rehabilitation, or Adaptive Reuse Project; Emmanuel Housing won for New Addition to an Historic Building; Legendary Homes of the Minneapolis Lakes won for Grassroots: Advocacy & Education; and Barbara Bezat won for the Steve Murray Award.

For more information about each project, view AIA Minnesota’s website.