GrowingMinneapolis: News from Minneapolis Community Planning and Economic Development February

Growing Minneapolis: News and information from Minneapolis Community Planning and Economic Development

February 2015

Internship Opportunities

STEP-UP Application Deadline Approaching

The deadline for Minneapolis youth to apply for STEP-UP is just around the corner. The application deadline is next Wednesday, February 18.

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Nicollet Hotel Block Project Public Forum

Attend a public presentation and chance to weigh-in on the proposal by the City staff’s recommended developer, United Properties, for the Nicollet Hotel Block.

  • Monday, February 16, 7pm-8pm
    The Depot, Great Hall
    225 South 3rd Avenue
    Minneapolis, MN 55401

Meeting presented jointly by the Downtown and Mill District Neighborhood Association Event in collaboration with the City of Minneapolis.


“Fix-it Tech” Event

Friday, February 27, 3pm-7pm
Oak Park Center - Pillsbury United Communities
1701 Oak Park Avenue North, Minneapolis, MN 55411

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

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Minneapolis Tree Sale

Begins Monday, March 9, 8am
For Wards 3, 4, 5, 6 (Citywide sales begin March 23)

You can order online or may request a paper order form by calling 952-767-3880. Trees are $25 each and there are several varieties available. Your pre-ordered tree will be available for pick up at the Minneapolis Impound Lot on the following dates:

  • May 16, 8am-3pm
  • May 17, 8am-2pm
  • May 18, 3pm-7pm

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Community Connections Conference 2015

Saturday, March 21, 9am-3pm
Minneapolis Convention Center
1301 2nd Avenue South, Minneapolis, MN 55403

The Conference Theme – Creative Engagement and Action Using Arts and Placemaking – is an in-depth look at creative engagement strategies and creative placemaking. The conference is free. Registration is required.

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Downtown East Commons Public Meeting

Tuesday, February 24
Mill City Museum
704 South 2nd Street, Minneapolis

This public meeting will be an opportunity to meet the Downtown Commons landscape architect team led by Hargreaves Associates and discuss design ideas for the new park.  This will be the first of three public meetings. 

Learn About Changes Affecting Minneapolis Food Businesses 

Restaurant owners, managers, and chefs are invited to talk with Minneapolis Health Department staff about: 

  • Ideas for providing context for health inspection information to the community
  • How online access to health inspection information will affect you

Monday, March 2, 9-10 a.m. 
Minneapolis Central Library, Doty Board Room, 300 Nicollet Mall


Minneapolis Packaging Fair for Food Businesses

Learn what you need to know about food packaging changes in Minneapolis. Meet with food packaging suppliers to learn about packaging that meets the new rules. Get information on Hennepin County grants to help pay for costs of switching to reusable or compostable packaging.

Thursday, March 12, 9-12pm
Lake Calhoun Event Center (in St. Mary's Greek Orthodox Church), 3450 Irving Ave S, Minneapolis, MN 55408

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Minneapolis-Based Tech Firms Named 'Most Promising' for 2015

Two Minneapolis-based tech firms, Code42 & HighJump Software, are among America’s ‘Most Promising Companies’ for 2015, according to Forbes. 

Rank, Name, Annual Revenues as of January 2015

  • 80, Code 42, $65 million
  • 89, HighJump Software, $140 million

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Local Chef Leads Team USA to Bronze at 'Pastry Olympics' in France

Local chef John Kraus and his team took third place at the 2015 Coupe du Monde de la Pâtisserie, an international pastry-making competition in Lyon, France. Kraus, head chef and co-owner of Minneapolis bakery Patisserie 46, was the captain of Team USA, which took bronze at the event. 

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Local Chef Coaches Team USA and takes Silver at Culinary Olympics

Spoon and Stable's Gavin Kaysen and his culinary team took the silver medal at the Bocuse d'Or, the culinary olympics of the world. 

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2015 Edition of “A Guide to Starting a Business in Minnesota” Now Available

The 33rd edition of the popular guide features expanded sections on business entity choice, changes in employment law and unemployment regulation, financing and taxation.

Download Here

New & Expanding






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 Spotlight: Peppers & Fries

Bringing Burgers and Burritos Together

Peppers & Fries

Another development win came for the Longfellow/Lake Street area, when experienced father-daughter restaurateur team Steve and Marie Frias opened Peppers & Fries at 3900 E Lake Street on January 26. The Friases selected the Longfellow Neighborhood as they were looking for a place to create an urban burger-burrito grill in a family-friendly, neighborhood setting - something they felt no one else was doing.  Peppers & Fries, named after a combination of Steve and Marie’s childhood nicknames, offers over 10 made-from- scratch burger combinations.  Steve, a burger aficionado, says the secret to a good burger is to start with fresh beef patties from Husnik Meat Co. and layer them with rich flavor sensations like peanut butter, pepper jelly, and bacon.  A variety of burritos are also featured on the menu like the Willy’s Smothered Burrito which is filled with stewed chipotle pork, refried beans, Spanish rice, and cheddar and then smothered with more chipotle pork. 

Peppers & Fries is proud to work with other local businesses to provide recipe ingredients and desserts. Some of their local vendors include Izzy’s Ice Cream, Sunny Lane Pies, PJ Murphy’s Bakery, and this summer they will feature bratwursts from the Longfellow Market across the street.

The remodel of the blighted, vacant SuperAmerica to a burger-burrito grill/sports bar with glass garage doors was a big undertaking. Steve said that working with the Longfellow Business Association and Lake Street Council extremely helpful guiding them through the development review process and helping make connections to financial resources.  The project was made possible with loans from BankCherokee, Metropolitan Consortium of Community Developers, Neighborhood Development Center, and the City of Minneapolis. Peppers and Fries employs 32 staff.

Andrea Brennan Joins City of Minneapolis as New Director of Housing Policy and Development


The City of Minneapolis department of Community Planning and Economic Development (CPED) welcomed Andrea Brennan as the new Director of Housing Policy and Development on Thursday, February 12. In this role, Brennan will be responsible for all housing development activities for the City. She will also manage and provide leadership to a staff of approximately 35 employees charged with implementing CPED housing policies.

Brennan brings 17 years of experience in housing policy and development to Minneapolis. Most recently, Brennan served as the Director of Community and Economic Development for Dakota County Community Development Agency. Before that, she served as the Deputy Executive Director for the Washington County Housing and Redevelopment Authority.

Brennan has served as a board member/member for many organizations and nonprofits including: Minneapolis Development Finance Review Committee, Business Service Committee, Dakota-Scott Workforce Investment Board, National Association of Local Housing Finance Agencies, National Association of Housing and Redevelopment Officials, Sensible Land Use Coalition, Urban Land Institute, Minnesota Brownfields, and Economic Development Association of Minnesota.

WorkForce Centers Reaching More Customers

Helping people learn new work skills and find jobs is among the many missions of the Minnesota WorkForce Centers. “The wide ranging and different services in Minneapolis centers are planned, designed and delivered, taking into account what services customers need and when they need them,” said Ibrahim Noor, field operations area manager of the two Minneapolis WorkForce Centers.

Over the past three years, the average monthly percentage of unemployed people attending a workshop or using a resource room computer at a Minnesota WorkForce Center has increased. This is a step in the right direction as each person served by a WorkForce Center is another person whose economic future can be improved.

The average monthly percent of the unemployed using WorkForce Center resources statewide in 2013 was 12.7%. The two Minneapolis WorkForce Centers monthly percent of unemployed using services was 20.6%, the second highest in the state.

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Seeking Artists for Nicollet Mall Redesign

Nicollet Mall

The City of Minneapolis is seeking a diverse range of public artists to create four new projects as an important part of the redesign and reconstruction of the city’s downtown Nicollet Mall.

The project’s goals are to develop new works of art which:

  • Are stimulating and contribute to the mall’s reputation as a national destination,
  • Engage adults and children at both large scale and detailed (intimate) levels,
  • Contribute to the mall’s vitality and ability to attract visitors,
  • Represent the best creative ideas and the range of cultural communities in the city,
  • Are compatible with the mall design, the current art collection and the needs of the businesses and residents, and
  • Are durable and can be maintained in Minneapolis’ climate and urban environment.

Additional information regarding this call for artists can be found on the City’s website. The deadline for submissions is midnight (MT) on February 27, 2015. The City expects to select artists by mid-April and to install the new artworks as the mall is reconstructed in 2016 and 2017.

Sam Grant Named Executive Director at Everybody In

Sam Grant is taking the lead as Executive Director of Everybody In, a regional collaboration created to eliminate racial employment disparities in the Minneapolis/Saint Paul seven-county region by 2020. 


Everybody In was developed through the Ramsey County Board of Commissioners, Ramsey County Workforce Investment Board, City of Saint Paul and City of Minneapolis in response to our metropolitan area having the highest racial employment disparity in the nation.

Sam’s achievements include being a founder of the Organizing Apprenticeship Project (now Voices for Racial Justice), launching and serving as president of a community development credit union, launching and leading the development of an environmental business incubator, and designing and leading a mid-career apprenticeship program. Sam is also part of an effort to support the development of a food system for community health and wealth in North Minneapolis. He teaches at Metropolitan State University where he designed the Minor in Community Organizing and Development.

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One Minneapolis Fund Now Accepting Proposals

The City of Minneapolis is seeking proposals for One Minneapolis Fund grants, which can help community organizations with leadership development programs and community engagement activities. A total of $182,000 is available from the One Minneapolis Fund in 2015, and community organizations may apply for up to $25,000 in funding for projects. To be eligible for funding from the program, an organization must be a non-governmental, non-profit organization serving residents of Minneapolis. Neighborhoods who receive Community Participation Program funding are not eligible to apply, however, they may partner with a community organization on a project in which the community organization serves as the applicant to the One Minneapolis Fund.

Proposals are due by 4pm on April 6, 2015. Any questions on the program should be submitted in writing to Howard Blin. To submit a proposal, visit the City of Minneapolis website.

New OpenGov Platform Offers Residents Instant Access to City’s Financial Data


On Monday, February 9, the City of Minneapolis launched a new financial transparency platform powered by that provides residents and city officials unprecedented access to the City’s financial information. Minneapolis is the largest city in the Midwest to launch an OpenGov platform.  The powerful visualization software transforms volumes of raw financial data into actionable insight and information, enabling better analysis and understanding of the City’s budget. The platform can be accessed through the City’s website or directly at

Minneapolis residents and staff can now explore long-term budget trends and quickly drill down into specific financial detail in an intuitive, user-friendly format. Residents can easily answer questions such as, “what did the City spend on capital improvement projects?” or “how has City spending on police changed over the past seven years?” and download or share the data on social media.

With the launch of this financial transparency platform and last month’s launch of the City’s open data portal more City data is easily available to the public than ever before. Previously, if residents or reporters wanted much of this information, they had to formally request it from the City.

Local Entrepreneurs Highlighted in National Documentary Project

Deluxe Corp. is highlighting restaurateur Kim Bartmann and other Twin Cities-based entrepreneurs in a series of short films featuring small businesses. As part of its nationwide "Small Business Revolution" project and to celebrate its 100th anniversary, Deluxe is telling the individual stories of 100 small businesses around the country through video and photo essays. 

The photo essays showcase St. Paul-based Laura Hlavac Design, Minneapolis-based Bogart's Doughnut Co., St. Croix Chocolate Co. in Marine on St. Croix, and other local small businesses.

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Recycling Superstar Businesses Named by Hennepin County

Hennepin County put out a list to name, thank and congratulate small and large companies that were part of the county's Environmental Partners program last year. The businesses committed to recycling day-to-day waste, composting food, delivering food scraps to local farmers and donating edible food to rescue agencies.

Businesses that want to start or advance recycling efforts can get Hennepin County grants up to $50,000, plus free labels and signage for storefronts and recycling containers, as well as staff assistance and advice.

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