Growing Minneapolis: News from the City of Minneapolis Community Planning and Economic Development

Growing MPLS

April 2017

CPED's Mission: Grow a vibrant, livable, safely built city for everyone. 


Arts for Placemaking - Panel Discussion & Networking

Tue, April 18, 2017
4:00 pm – 6:00 pm 

Lakes & Legends Brewing Company
1368 Lasalle Avenue
Minneapolis, MN 55403

Panel speakers involved in commercial district revitalization will lead a discussion  to pull together other practitioners engaged in the work to hear about success stories, community impacts, new strategies, and equally important, what was tried but didn’t work.

Register Here

Lake Street Council 2017 Annual Meeting & Awards

Thursday, April 20 
4 pm - 6 pm 

Stella's Fish Café & Prestige Oyster Bar
1400 West Lake Street
Minneapolis, MN 55408

Join us to celebrate our vibrant local business community!

Our Annual Meeting brings together business leaders and stakeholders from throughout the Lake Street corridor. You will enjoy mingling with others, hearing highlights from 2016, learning about our 2017 goals, and meeting our Community Impact Award winners!

Purchase Tickets

Earth Day Cleanup

Saturday, April 22
9:30 am - Noon

Check event page for participating site locations throughout Minneapolis

Earth Day Cleanup provides a volunteer experience and environmental education to Minneapolis residents and park users. This annual event involves cleaning Minneapolis parks, neighborhoods, watersheds and water bodies including the Chain of Lakes, Lake Nokomis, Lake Hiawatha, Powderhorn Lake, Diamond Lake, Shingle Creek, Minnehaha Creek, Bassett's Creek and the Mississippi River. 

800 West Broadway Open House

Friday, April 28
10 am - 3 pm
800 West Broadway Avenue
(Parking available across the street in the Cub Foods lot.) 

800 West Broadway is a collaboration between the Minnesota WorkForce Center, Minneapolis Public Schools and NorthPoint Health and Wellness.

Join us as we celebrate the opening of this innovative center.

Minneapolis - St. Paul Home Tour 

Saturday, April 29
10 am - 5 pm
Sunday, April 30
1 pm - 5 pm

The Minneapolis and Saint Paul Home Tour is an annual event that promotes city living through home tours across the Twin Cities. The tour is sponsored by the Planning and Economic Development departments of both cities, local financial institutions, developers, contractors and other businesses, and homeowners who volunteer to open their homes.

More information, including home tour addresses here.

COPA Art Crawl

Saturday, May 6
10 am 

Corcoran, Minneapolis

Come experience the fantastic art that exists in Corcoran on opening weekend of the Midtown Farmers Market. Artists of all disciplines from Corcoran and Powderhorn neighborhoods will be featured. 
Maps and guides coming soon. Check the event listing for updates. 

New & Expanding Businesses







Contact CPED

612-673-5001 or 311
Staff Directory

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

Public Service Center
Development Review
Customer Service Center
250 South Fourth Street
Room 300
Minneapolis, MN 55415
Map and Parking

City Hall
Business Licensing
350 South 5th Street
Room 1C
Minneapolis, MN 55415

Business Profile: Chin Dian

Chin Dian Owners

In 2005, Nina Wong opened Chin Dian on Hennepin Avenue in Southeast Como after working at her family’s restaurant, Rainbow Chinese, for 18 years. With her husband, Thomas Gnanapragasam, the two combine dishes from Nina’s Chinese and Vietnamese background with dishes from Thomas’ Indian and Malaysian background. Fan favorites include the Chow Mai Fun, Curry Chicken, and the Madras Chicken, Nasi Lemak. In addition to serving food, Nina and Thomas have started a professionally curated art gallery attached to the restaurant that features different local artists each month. 

Photo:  Chin Dian owners Nina Wong and Thomas Gnananoragasam

Chin Dian has accessed support from the City’s Business Technical Assistance Program (B-TAP) through MEDA, and received assistance with construction bidding and contracting, marketing plans for the building, and rebranding design.  

Currently in its 12th year of business, Chin Dian will undergo a rebranding and will add some new dishes to the menu. Nina says that her favorite part of owning a restaurant is making her customers happy and comfortable with good, unique food.  

New Lots for 2017 Vacant Lot Gardens

Photo of past community gardens
Minneapolis community gardens in past years

The City’s Community Garden Program began in 2010 to make Minneapolis more beautiful, provide healthy food and build community. Currently, there are around 60 lots already leased to community groups for the 2017 gardening season and about 40 City-owned vacant lots still available. Community and market gardeners can apply through April 14 for priority consideration to lease a lot. Lots that are still available after the 14th may be leased on a first-come, first-served basis until the next application process in the fall or winter.

Interested groups should submit a Garden Request Form for each parcel they intend to request. Access to these lots will help improve food equity and access to healthy food, and grow the local food economy. Minneapolis already has about 300 community gardens throughout the city. Click here for more information. 

STEP-UP Youth Train for Their Summer Internships

Photo of STEP-UP interns in training
STEP-UP interns-in-training

Over 3,400 Minneapolis youth have been accepted to the 2017 STEP-UP youth employment program and invited to work readiness training certified by the Minneapolis Chamber of Commerce. Trainings took place throughout March and into April. Youth that successfully completed work readiness training will be eligible to be matched with STEP-UP jobs. Youth are placed in training based on age and work experience. 

Current 2017 job recruitment goals:

  • 650 internships with STEP-UP Achieve (16 and older)
  • 800 with STEP-UP Discover (14 and 15 years old)
  • 175 with STEP-UP Explore (14-21 cohorts in an industry specific training and work model)

If you are interested in hiring a STEP-UP intern for summer 2017, click here.

STEP-UP is a program of the City of Minneapolis in partnership with AchieveMpls.  Other major partners include Project for Pride in Living, DEED, and the Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board.

Minneapolis Teen Job and Opportunity Fair April 22

Teen Job Fair Flyer

Saturday, April 22
9:00 am-2:00 pm
Hennepin County Library - Minneapolis Central
300 Nicollet Mall, Second Floor

The Minneapolis Teen Job and Opportunity Fair is a great way for teenagers 14 to 19 to connect with job-search resources and find out more about opportunities for volunteering, internships, training and employment. More than 40 businesses and organizations are expected to exhibit including HyVee, Lunds and Byerly’s, Mall of America, Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board, North Memorial Hospital, and TJ Maxx.

New to the event this year is an opportunity for teens to meet with a career coach and prepare for the job fair. Coaches will work help youths maximize their job fair experience by targeting their resumes, recommending which employer booths to visit, and preparing them for face-to-face meetings. The event is free and pre-registration is not required.

A complete list of exhibitors can be found on the City of Minneapolis website. Participants can follow the event on social media with the hashtag #MplsTeenJobFair.

Cedar Riverside Opportunity Center - Now Open!

Cedar Riverside Opportunity Center Grand Opening
Mohamed Ali (EMERGE) speaks to the crowd at the Cedar Riverside Opportunity Center Grand Opening. (Source: EMERGE)

The grand opening of the Cedar Riverside Opportunity Center was held on March 12 bringing together community members, elected officials, and nonprofit leaders to discuss the future of the center and the role it will play in the community.

In the month of March, there were four “Employer of the Day” events held that brought more than 12 employers into the neighborhood to meet and interview job seekers.  Anchor partners EMERGE Community Development,  Hennepin CountyCity of Minneapolis,  Hennepin County Library, and Minneapolis Community and Technical College will have a presence at the center and will work together to provide program participants with wraparound employment and educational services. The center's resources are targeted at serving the neighborhood's East African community.

The Cedar Riverside Opportunity Center at 505 15th Avenue South is open Monday -Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. The center’s telephone number is 612-425-4700.

Seeking Nominations for the 27th Annual Minneapolis Heritage Preservation Awards

Seeking Nominations for the 27th Annual Minneapolis Heritage Preservation Awards

Preserve Minneapolis, AIA Minneapolis, and the Minneapolis Heritage Preservation Commission are seeking award nominations to recognize projects, individuals, and organizations for preserving the heritage and historic character of Minneapolis. To nominate a building project, individual, and/or community organization complete the online nomination form by Friday, April 21, 2017 by 4 p.m. CDT.  All projects for nomination must be located in the City of Minneapolis.

Categories of nomination include:

  • Historic Restoration, Rehabilitation, or Adaptive Reuse
  • New Addition to a Historic Building
  • New Construction within a Historic District
  • Grassroots: Advocacy & Education
  • The Steve Murray Award

Projects will be judged based on the quality of design, architecture, workmanship, and their positive impact on the community. The awards will be presented at the 27th Annual Minneapolis Preservation Awards luncheon held at International Market Square on Thursday, May 18th, 2017 at 11:30 a.m. All are welcome to attend.  

Learn more

Apply to Serve on the Minneapolis Workforce Development Board

The City of Minneapolis is accepting applications for open seats to serve on the Minneapolis Workforce Development Board.  Terms are for three (3) years, beginning July 1, 2017.  Information and application materials may be accessed on the City of Minneapolis Boards & Commissions website.

The Minneapolis Workforce Development Board (MWDB) is a 21-member board that is appointed by the Mayor, confirmed by City Council, and certified by the Governor of Minnesota.  The MWDB determines the directions and set policies for training and placement activities that aim to reduce the unemployment of Minneapolis residents.  Additionally, the MWDB oversees the operation of Workforce Centers within the City of Minneapolis.  The MWDB seeks to Grow a Competitive Workforce.

Applicants must be City residents.  The residency requirement may be waived by City Council for an officer or director of an organization that pays property taxes to the City of Minneapolis.

Board Contacts: Matthew Courtney, Email or call 612-673-6236
City Clerk Contact: Email or call  612-673-2216

City Educates Businesses on Duty to Stop Discrimination

The City of Minneapolis is stepping up efforts to prevent discrimination. The Civil Rights Department is reaching out to businesses to talk about their responsibilities under city law.

Staff will spend more time investigating charges of bias, eventually sending diverse “testers” out to businesses to document their treatment.

Full Story

Minneapolis Chamber Names 5 as ‘Best in Business’

The Minneapolis Regional Chamber of Commerce has chosen a diverse collection of businesses as its “best” of 2017:  A tech services firm, a public relations shop, website consulting company, a Catholic high school and a major utility. 

Full Story

Wine, Painting Forge New Ties in North Minneapolis

Paint-and-sip parties have become increasingly popular the past five years around the country and in the Twin Cities, although they're relatively new to north Minneapolis, where poverty, redlining and disinvestment have stifled business growth, leaving mostly bars and clubs catering to a lower-income and younger demographic.

But in the year they've been running out of the Northside Economic Opportunity Network on West Broadway Avenue, the paint-and-sip parties have become a popular nightlife destination for African-Americans. In the process, they're also helping build a new kind of north side culture.

"I didn't initially know how it would impact the community," said Kenneth Caldwell, the artist who began hosting his painting sessions there. "They've really embraced it, so many people have realized their hidden talent as artists."

Full Story

Publishers Weekly Picks Wild Rumpus as its Bookstore of the Year

Wild Rumpus, the Linden Hills children's bookstore, was selected as the Bookstore of the Year by Publishers Weekly.

Wild Rumpus was founded in 1992 by owners Collette Morgan and Tom Braun, focusing on young readers from the beginning (the name's a reference to the kids' classic Where the Wild Things Are). It's become a favorite of local residents and authors, and has captured attention by stocking its store not just with books, but a coterie of animals, including chickens, a ferret, cats and a tarantula. ( You can see them all here.)

Full Story

North Minneapolis is Poised For New Growth

With three current projects in the pipeline, St. Paul-based Wellington Management Inc. has emerged as the busiest private real estate developer in North Minneapolis, the most challenging corner of the metro to draw new investment.

Full Story

James Beard Awards Finalists Announced With Two Minneapolis Chefs On the List

The James Beard Foundation Awards are known as the Oscars of Food, and today we learned that two Minnesota chefs will move on as finalists.

The list of semifinalists, which included 13 Minnesotans was whittled down to two Twin Cities chefs in the category of Best Chef: Midwest - Steven Brown of Tilia and St. Genevieve and Surly's Brewer's Table's Jorge Guzman. 

Full Story