Please consider signing the petition organized by the Uptown Association! The goal of the petition is to have the City Council vote delayed until after the November election, and also allow for changes in design options to be considered to accommodate and compromise all that makes up our community.
The City of Minneapolis has released two design layouts for Phase 2 of the Hennepin Avenue South reconstruction project from W. Lake Street to Douglas Avenue, referred to as Option 1 and Option 2. Both proposals include 24/7 dedicated bus lanes in each direction, one of the proposals includes two bike lanes, and both have only one lane for car traffic in each direction.
Both proposals call for elimination of 83-92% of the on-street parking along this key business and residential corridor.
The City is currently accepting feedback through April 16th, 2021 on the two design options. Although we encourage you to provide feedback on the City’s project page, we also urge you to join and support our petition calling for more significant changes to the design, so that it incorporates the needs of our businesses.
The current designs re-cast Hennepin as a corridor to be “passed through”, rather than as home to a commercial node where people come to work, shop, dine, and more. These designs would create a neighborhood that is radically different from the area’s function historically. Without significant modification, this project will adversely affect the entire Uptown community, threaten the viability of Uptown businesses, and provide yet another barrier to having an Uptown that can function as a commercial node.
We recognize and agree with many of the goals this project aims to address. Single traffic lanes with a shared turning lane, enhanced pedestrian experience, reduction of carbon footprint, rapid bus lanes et. al., are all worthy ideas. While we appreciate the City’s concern to improve safety for all road users, an unintended consequence of the project is that they would negatively impact many businesses on both sides of Hennepin Avenue and beyond.
With increased sidewalks, medians, bus, and bike lanes, these areas serve as a driveway and lifeline for over 150 businesses along the corridor. Many of these businesses utilize the on-street parking to load & unload important deliveries (including DoorDash, Lyft, Uber, etc.), perform curbside interactions with customers and other business-related tasks, easily accommodate persons using wheelchairs, and of course, are utilized by customers.
If either of the current Options are chosen, businesses with storefronts along Hennepin Avenue would not be able to function properly, and would be negatively impacted by these changes as they stand. In addition, property owners (both commercial and residential) will be assessed for this project, thereby increasing the “cost of doing business” and the “cost of living” in Uptown, while providing significant obstacles for businesses to attract customers and employees.
Phase 1 of Hennepin reconstruction from 36th to W. Lake Street had largely negative consequences to businesses on the corridor, and we are concerned that this process is “history repeating”, without learning lessons from Phase 1.
The Minneapolis City Council will be voting on these two design options in August. Your voice matters! The business community is the backbone of a vibrant Uptown community where residents want to live, work and play and your support is needed for the success of the community. We need businesses and residents to speak up, and all concerns to be heard.
City of Minneapolis Project Page: https://www.minneapolismn.gov/government/projects/hennepin-ave-s/
The City project team is seeking input through April 16, 2021.
Funding sources for the Hennepin South Reconstruction project. The sources and approximate percentages are:
The federal grant amount and the assessment amount are fixed and don’t change as the design of the project progresses.
Businesses on this corridor paid over $6.6mm in taxes in 2020. See tax assessment per address HERE.
The Minneapolis Regional Chamber released a report (Feb. 2021), to illustrate the significant economic and financial contributions the
businesses and residents of the City of Minneapolis contribute to the vitality of the entire state. View the entire report: Minneapolis Balance of Payments Report
How many parking spaces are removed with each design?
On street: There are currently approximately 340 on-street spaces on Hennepin. Option 1 is showing approximately 30 spaces; Option 2 is showing approximately 60 spaces.
Private Off-street: In terms of off-street parking there are a total of 1,715 spaces on the east side of Hennepin (approx. 500 in surface parking lots) and 1,120 on the west side of Hennepin (approx. 940 in surface parking lots).
Parking Survey Observations:
Current City initiatives:
WHERE ARE THE INITIATIVES FOR BUSINESS SUPPORT IN OUR COMMUNITY?