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

Growing Mpls 2

December 2020

Apply for the Minneapolis 4d Affordable Housing Incentive Program

collage of the exterior of homes in Minneapolis participating in the 4d Affordable Housing Program

Homes in Minneapolis participating in the Minneapolis 4d Affordable Housing Incentive Program

The City of Minneapolis is accepting applications for the Minneapolis 4d Affordable Housing Incentive Program, which helps property owners obtain property tax reductions for agreeing to keep a portion of rental units affordable for 10 years. Learn how to apply

Applications will be accepted and reviewed on a rolling basis with a final deadline of January 8, 2021. Property owners are encouraged to apply early.

Since the launch of the program in May 2018, the Minneapolis 4d program has helped preserve over 1,000 affordable housing units through partnerships with more than 100 property owners. It is one of several strategies the City is deploying to address the affordable housing shortage in Minneapolis.

Program benefits

  • 10-year eligibility for 4d property tax rate, which provides a 40% tax rate reduction on qualifying units. The reduction is prorated so if you enroll 50% of the units in the building your reduction would be about 20%, etc.
  • Free or low-cost energy assessments and city cost sharing for solar energy installations and energy efficiency improvements.
  • A grant to each 4d property, in the amount of $100 per affordable unit, capped at $1,000 per property, as well as payment of document recording fees and first year State of Minnesota Low Income Rental Classification (LIRC) fees.

For more information please email or call us at 612-673-5055 or 612-258-3390.

Minneapolis Projects Receive Environmental Awards

Several Minneapolis development projects were recognized by Minnesota Brownfields at its ReScape Awards ceremony on November 5, 2020. Minnesota Brownfields is a statewide nonprofit organization that was created to promote (through education, research and partnerships) the efficient cleanup and redevelopment of contaminated land throughout Minnesota. The annual ReScape Awards celebrate exceptional projects that reclaim and revitalize polluted, blighted and underutilized properties – thereby providing new jobs, new housing, new offices, new green spaces, and new community amenities.

ReScape’s Community Impact Award is for projects that achieve notable community benefits by incorporating equitable approaches, improving quality-of-life issues, and/or using other social innovations or public policy initiatives. This year, the winner of the Community Impact Award for small projects (redevelopment costs of $20 million or less) was Great River Landing, a 72-unit supportive housing development that serves individuals with histories of incarceration and homelessness.

This year’s winner of the Community Impact Award for large projects (redevelopment costs over $20 million) was the joint Brook Avenue Co-op/Maya Commons project. Two nonprofits (Project for Pride in Living and Riverton Community Housing) collaborated to create two separate living areas on the site of the former Bunge grain elevator. Maya Commons contains 50 units of affordable housing, and Brook Avenue Co-op is a 95-unit student housing cooperative.

This year’s Innovation Award went to the 118-unit Hook & Ladder Apartments project, which is the first Minnesota multi-family housing development built to stringent Passive House certification standards.  A Passive House design is focused on making best use of the “passive” influences in a building – like sunshine, shading and ventilation – rather than active heating and cooling systems such as air conditioning and central heating. Coupled with very high levels of insulation and airtightness, this makes it possible for a Passive House to use 90 percent less energy than a typical dwelling.

Community Provides Input for the Thirty-Eighth Street THRIVE Strategic Development Plan

A rendering of people gathered outside for a picnic

Rendering of the Thirty-Eight Street THRIVE Strategic Development Plan Draft

The City has been seeking community feedback for the final revision to the 38th Street Strategic Development THRIVE Plan. The deadline to provide feedback was Monday, December 7. The Thirty-Eighth Street THRIVE Strategic Development Plan is an opportunity towards continuing the legacy and heritage of a deeply rooted African American community by preserving their economic vibrancy, creative identity, and affordability that strengthens the vitality, resilience and partnership of the people who live and work in the district. The plan has been created by community stakeholders of the Thirty-Eighth Street Cultural District, in collaboration with the City of Minneapolis.

The plan aims to be concise and visionary, and targets what the community wants to change and how they want to develop over a ten-year period to 2030. This Strategic Plan will also implement the policies of Minneapolis 2040 to achieve comprehensive plan goals such as to create more affordable and accessible housing opportunities and increase access to living-wage jobs.

In 2015, the City held a planning series titled “The Future of East 38th Street,” hosted by former Ward 8 Council Member Elizabeth Glidden. Those meetings formulated several ideas, priorities and recommendations for our communities, including the preservation of African American history and community ownership to name a few.

In February 2019, CVP Jenkins decided to continue the planning work to create THRIVE, a strategic development plan by the community, in collaboration with the City of Minneapolis.

Thirty-Eighth Street THRIVE Strategic Development Plan Draft (PDF)

Amber Apartments Groundbreaking

City leaders with shovels breaking ground outside

City leaders at the Amber Apartments groundbreaking

On a cold and windy October 21, 2020, Amber Apartments -- developed by RS Eden -- held their groundbreaking. RS Eden President and CEO Caroline Hood addressed those that braved the weather to attend the groundbreaking. Mayor Frey, Ward 12 Council Member Andrew Johnson, Hennepin County Commissioner Angela Conley, and former RS Eden President Dan Cain also addressed the attendees.

Located in the Longfellow community, this much needed affordable housing project is a five-story apartment building with 80 studio units; 53 units are affordable to households at 50% of the Area Median Income (AMI), 22 units are affordable at 30% AMI (17 of them for persons experiencing homelessness and seven for persons with disabilities), and 5 units are market rate. There is also a single one-bedroom unit at 60% AMI for the building caretaker. A range of affordable rents paired with excellent access to public transit will make Amber Apartments an 'affordable living' neighborhood asset for years to come. One third of the property will also be green space with the hope it will eventually be the Minn Hi Line linear park.

City of Minneapolis Funded by DEED to expand CDL Training

Minneapolis received a $90,300 Minnesota Job Skills Partnership (MJSP) grant to add more Commercial Driver’s License (CDL) training for residents. The grant will allow Emerge Community Development to offer training and services for 21 job seekers. CDL training is in high demand and employers are consistently seeking qualified drivers.

More information about Career Pathways at the City of Minneapolis

Business Licensing Office Closed December 14 – 16, 2020

Business Licensing will be moving from City Hall to its new location in the Minneapolis Public Service Building and will be closed to the public. 

Payments will not be processed from December 14 – 16, 2020 however, staff will be available for limited services by telephone and email. Contact us at 612-673-2080 or You may also reach out to your area inspector directly. 

Minneapolis Public Service Building
505 4th St S
Minneapolis, MN 55415
Skyway Level


Frank & Ernest Markets
One-stop online shop

Eat and gift local. Order direct from sellers Monday – Thursday. This Minnesota made multi-vendor online marketplace lets customers learn about up-and-coming, new producers of produce, proteins, pastry and indie-gredient products; while still being able to meet-and-greet (albeit from a distance) and buy directly from those tried-and-true market stalwarts they've grown to love at their local markets. Letting you buy direct from the makers that matter most - your neighbors - is at the heart of F&E.
More Information

Workshop 5: The future of commercial nodes in an era of online shopping
Thursday, December 17, 2:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.

In partnership with Council Member Cano, the University of Minnesota’s Weisman Art Museum, and the Minnesota Design Center (MDC), there is a series of workshops on alternative economic development models.
More Information

City Seeking Feedback on Draft Upper Harbor Redevelopment Plan 
Tuesday, December 15, 4:30 p.m. – 6:30 p.m.

The City is seeking input on the redevelopment plan for the Upper Harbor site on the Mississippi River in North Minneapolis – a 48-acre City-owned site formerly home to a barge shipping terminal. You can comment on the Upper Harbor Draft Coordinated Plan by taking an online survey on the project website by Jan. 15, 2021. 
More Information

Ariel view of the Mississippi river

Upper Harbor Learning Table: Community Benefits Operationalized Continued
Wednesday, December 16, 4:30 p.m. – 6:30 p.m.

Join us as we re-engage in the work of operationalizing the community benefits that have been explored over the series of 9 Learning Tables. Key elements, strategies and tactics to ensure North Minneapolis residents are the benefactors of this development will be shaped in tandem with community.
More Information

New/Expanding Businesses



Coworking Space

woman outside of a food truck


exterior of building

In the News

Erik’s Bike Shop relocates headquarters to Minneapolis from Bloomington
Read in Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal

Pizzeria Lola expands to-go menu with frozen pizza
Read in Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal

Resurgent W. Broadway boasts $125 million in projects in north Minneapolis
Read in the Star Tribune

Behind many new buildings on the North Side are the ideas, designs of Jamil Ford
Read in the Star Tribune

The House Nicole Jennings Built
Read in Mpls St. Paul

Mayor Frey Floats Idea To Boost BIPOC Businesses
Read in Twin Cities Business

Hennepin County Board approves $8 million to help bars and restaurants survive latest state COVID restrictions
Read in the Star Tribune

Minneapolis retail experts launch online shop for small retailers spurred by COVID-19 economy
Read in the Star Tribune

Midtown Global Market offering delivery service through Shipt
Read in Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal

SHOP LOCAL: North Minneapolis holiday shopping guide
Read in North News

About this Newsletter

Growing Minneapolis is published monthly by the City of Minneapolis Community Planning and Economic Development Department. If you have questions, please contact

For reasonable accommodations or alternative formats please call 311 at 612-673-3000.

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