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Minutes for May 27, 2014

2020 Partners Membership Meeting

HGA, Ford Center

Meeting Minutes – Approved by the 2020 Partners on July 22, 2014

Attendees: Michael Ahern, Dave Albersman, Kathleen Anderson, Mike Christenson, Matt Clark, Aaron Corcoran, Tom Crowley, Daniel Defoster, Raymond Dehn, Alice Eichholz, Brent Erickson, Sandy Forberg, Jamil Ford, David Frank, Jacob Frey, Brad Henry, Linda Higgins, George Holden, Denise Holt, Bob Iwaskeayez, Ted Johnson, Dan Kenney, Nick Koch, Dave Laidig, Bruce Lambrecht, Chuck Leer, David Loehr, Peter McLaughlin, Dan Mehls, Kelly Nelson, Mark Oyaas, Duane Petersen, Robert Pfefferle, Neil Reardon, Peter Roos, Karen Rosar, LJ Rotman, Carl Runck, Bob Salmen, Marcy Schulte, Dave St. Peter, Mark Stenglein, Ralph Strangis, Albert Swintek, Gene Tierney, Marsha Wagner, Brent Webb

1. Welcome and Introductions – Nick Koch, Host, and Chuck Leer, Chair

2. Approval of Minutes from 2020 Partners Meeting on March 25, 2014
Minutes were approved and have been posted on The 2020 Partners website.

3. Transit Development Updates – Peter McLaughlin, Hennepin County Commissioner

a. Green Line Opening June 14 – Festivities will take place at 10 different stations, with main events taking place at Target Field and Union Depot Stations. Community events will take place along the line, with an emphasis on reaching out to the neighborhoods.

b. Target Field Station: Opening day (May 17) went great, with perfect weather, dads playing catch with their kids, and a wedding party in attendance.

c. Southwest Corridor: Members were invited to advocate for the Southwest LRT at a public hearing on May 29 at the Hennepin County Government Center, with an open house preceding it on the public service level.

When queried about how long he has been working on the Green Line (Central Corridor), Commissioner McLaughlin said since the early 90s, about 25 years. He’s hoping subsequent lines don’t take that long. Commissioner McLaughlin added his thanks to the Twins, Target, Minnesota Ballpark Authority, United Properties and “North Loopers” for forwarding plans to develop Target Field Station (“TFS”), a dynamic public gathering space.

The 2020 Partners has been asked to assist with activating/programming TFS. The Steering Committee will discuss this at its June 19 meeting, and welcomes ideas and concepts.

4. The Workforce Case for Southwest Light Rail – Mike Christenson, Minneapolis Community and Technical College [PPT Presentation]

Mr. Christenson began by offering his congratulations on the successful opening of TFS, adding that since 2010 it has been Commissioner McLaughlin’s vision and grasp for the obvious that made it happen. He also introduced, Aaron Corcoran, MCTCWorks Pathways Lead at Minneapolis Community and Technical College (MCTC), who is developing a software tool to help MCTC download and track daily job postings.

In his presentation, Mr. Christenson discussed the value of a credential, comparing the value of a high school diploma with an associate degree in earnings potential. He showed current job openings requiring an associate degree at companies located along the Southwest LRT route, from Minneapolis, through St. Louis Park and Minnetonka, to Eden Prairie. He said that SWLRT would be used to fuel career paths of students at MCTC and others.

5. Creating Connections – Chuck Leer; Mark Oyaas, Neerland & Oyaas, Inc.

Mary deLaittre, Groundworks, worked with Chuck Leer and Mark Oyaas on a PowerPoint presentation focused on city building and creating connections, which has always been the focus of our organization. It will be presented at a public hearing in support of Southwest LRT on May 29.

Phase 1 (2006-2014) shows how Target Field was a catalyst for development, leveraged to become “more than a ballpark.” Since 2006 there has been over $1 billion in new investment; $400 million in infrastructure and Target Field Station, and $600 million from private sector development (Twins, United Properties, Hines, Trammell Crow, and others) bringing new capital into the neighborhood.

Phase 2 indicates how SWLRT will be a catalyst to continued development in the neighborhood, specifically the area encompassing the Farmers Market and Royalston Station, and moving into areas north of Highway 55 and west of I-94. Mary’s Place and Catholic Charities will be embraced as part of the neighborhood. Next steps will be to Advance SWLRT, identify assets and opportunities, and develop an implementation strategy.

Subsequent discussion brought up concerns about displacement of people in the existing communities in the surrounding area, and physical barriers to connectivity. Also, the proposed Bottineau Line was evident in the presentation, but not SWLRT. Other comments: culture and community come from connections; there are three North Minneapolis LRT stations (Penn, Van White, and Royalston), not two as often reported in the media; Royalston is also a transfer point for four bus lines; this area is not just about train stops, but all the things that flow through here. Mr. Leer said there’s only so much of the story that can be told here, and the focus is on creating connections. Mr. Oyaas said that this presentation shows where the momentum should go (north and west), and that the principles outlined on the bottom of each slide (equity, economic development and environment) should guide the actions of The 2020 Partners. Some additions and modifications will be made to the PowerPoint before it is presented at the public hearing on May 27.

6. Resolutions in Support of SWLRT
The North Loop Neighborhood Association has passed a resolution in support of SWLRT.

The 2020 Partners resolution in support of SWLRT was approved as modified. Karen Rosar asked the City of Minneapolis to understand the urgency of approving the line. Council Member Jacob Frey said the city is conducting internal meetings with a mediator, and he is confident that they are on a route to approving SWLRT within the deadline imposed by Metro Transit.

7. All-Star Game July 15 – Dave St. Peter, President, Minnesota Twins Baseball Club
Major League Baseball (MLB) will be finalizing plans within the next week. They expect the events to sell out, including the All-Star Futures Game and Legends & Celebrity Softball Game, Home Run Derby and All-Star Game. On June 16 details will be announced about a free concert with performances by Imagine Dragons and Atmosphere. Other events: Fanfest at the Minneapolis Convention Center from July 11-15, All-Star Gala at Mill City Museum, and pre-game party at Rapid Park site. The bars will be allowed to stay open until 4:00 am, which will help disperse crowds. MLB has secured the parking lot on First Avenue between Fifth and Sixth Streets, and will be closing part of Sixth Street.

Mr. St. Peter also announced that MLB and the Twins plan to donate more than $8 million to MLB All-Star projects in the Upper Midwest and to support national charitable initiatives. This donation, the most extensive in Midsummer Classic history in both number of projects and funding committed, is largely thanks to a generous contribution by the Pohlad Family Foundation along with the Twins Community Fund.

8. Mayo Clinic Square and Target Center Update – Ted Johnson, Senior VP Marketing and Communications, Minnesota Timberwolves | Lynx; Carl Runck, ‎Director of Real Estate Development, Alatus LLC
Mr. Johnson reported that the Target Center renovations are advancing. Architectural Alliance is working on the design, using a $90 million renovation project in Oklahoma City as a guide; and a construction manager (Mortenson) has been selected and approved by the Minneapolis City Council.

Carl Runck said that renovations/construction on Mayo Clinic Square, formerly Block E, has begun. He showed some renderings of how the new exterior will look from various intersections, and said it will be a “full face transplant, not just lipstick.” Kasota limestone from the same family as that used at Target Field will be used, along with scrim metal panels. They will be creating a corridor on the street level from Hennepin to First Avenue, seeking retail for that level. The second floor will be leased as office space. The third floor will be taken up by Mayo Clinic and the anchor tenant, Minnesota Timberwolves | Lynx, which will also take all of the fourth floor. The lobby will have a new escalator, with a clean and modern look.

Giving an update on the Training Center, Mr. Johnson reported that having a training center adjacent to an arena is unique; the team will become more a part of the community, with transparency. The sports medicine clinic, a center of excellence that will attract elite athletes, will be open to the public. They are dismantling the former theater space, leaving one theater to be used as a presentation space, and creating a blank canvas on which to start building. The third floor lobby for corporate offices will look into the training center, and they are adding mezzanine space and balconies.

9. 2020 Partners Funding and Scope of Work – Chuck Leer
Mr. Leer thanked the stakeholders who stepped forward with funding, and said with approximately $45,000 in our account we have adequate resources to use going forward.

10. 2020 Partners Meeting Schedule
The next meeting of the 2020 Partners will be on Tuesday, July 22, 2014.

All meetings will be held at HGA’s office in the Ford Center, from 5:00-6:30 p.m., unless otherwise specified in the meeting notices.

Minutes for March 25, 2014

2020 Partners Membership Meeting
HGA, Ford Center

Meeting Minutes – Approved by The 2020 Partners  on May 27, 2014

Attendees: Dave Albersman, Dale Anderson, Joan Campbell, Jackie Cherryhomes-Tyler, Matt Clark, Alice Eichholz, Brent Erickson, Sandy Forberg, Jacob Frey, David Galey, Brad Henry, Linda Higgins, George Holden, Bob Iwaskeaycz, Mark Iwaskewycz, Ben Johnson, Dan Kenney, John Kostouros, Chuck Leer, Tony Litton, David Loehr, Bill Madden, Sherman Malkerson, Jane Mauer, Peter McLaughlin, Carl Michaud, Kelly Nelson, Mark Oyaas, Duane Petersen, Neil Reardon, Kit Richardson, Duke Rodda, Peter Roos, Karen Rosar, LJ Rotman, Marcy Schulte, Mark Stenglein, Carletta Sweet, Albert Swintek, Gene Tierney, Joe Tierney, Marsha Wagner, Katie Walker, Dale White

1. Welcome and Introductions – David Loehr, Host, and Chuck Leer, Chair

2. Approval of Minutes from 2020 Partners Meeting on January 28, 2014
Minutes were approved and have been posted on The 2020 Partners website.

3. Transit Development Updates – Peter McLaughlin, Hennepin County Commissioner
Target Field Station: Opening day is May 17; festivities start in the early afternoon with 3-4 speeches, followed by a Twins game in the evening. The video board paid for by Target is up, and they will start using tail tracks for storing rail cars for opening day.

Central Corridor: The Grand Opening is June 14, with free rides throughout the entire Metro Transit system on Saturday and Sunday. The main ceremony will be held at the Depot in downtown St. Paul, with neighborhood celebrations all along the corridor.

Rail-Volution: National conference being held in Minneapolis September 21-24. United States Congressman Earl Blumenauer (Portland, OR) is the featured speaker.

Southwest Corridor: Now is the time to step in and advocate for this project to move forward. On April 2 the advisory group will make its recommendation to the Met Council on the route, form, and relocation of freight. The Met Council is scheduled to give its approval on April 9, and along with Hennepin County Regional Rail authority will hold formal hearings in early May. After a 45 day period all five cities and Hennepin County must provide consent for the preferred alternative: hide the light rail in tunnels alongside freight trains in the Kenilworth corridor of Minneapolis, or reroute the freight in St. Louis Park, which was the original plan. The latter plan would involve overcoming objection by the railroads, which would be daunting and would cause significant delay.

Commissioner McLaughlin distributed a handout showing a number of projects competing for funding in the FTA pipeline; of the 11 projects initially introduced in 2013, only two have not progressed, one of them being Southwest LRT. FTA funding for new starts has been flat since 2009, and gas tax revenues are going down as people switch to more fuel-efficient cars and change their driving habits. He urged members of The 2020 Partners to contact City Hall and other decision makers to advance this project now.

4. Southwest Corridor/Royalston Station – Katie Walker, Senior Administrative Manager, Southwest LRT Community Works [PPT Presentation]
SWLRT Community Works has been working with others to create a framework to spur economic development at LRT stations. They have created a new website that is user-friendly, station-based, and provides an online tool for soliciting feedback. They have also developed a process to promote opening day readiness in 2018 by bridging the gap between current conditions and future needs through identifying and prioritizing infrastructure improvements that enhance existing business, support mixed-income housing opportunities, and encourage new development.

In her presentation, Ms. Walker included a slide that showed existing land uses, including industrial/commercial, low-rise buildings (1-2 stories), large block sizes, limited access to North Loop and Loring Park, roadway network, transit facilities/service, and limited bike/pedestrian facilities. The Royalston station will transition from primarily industrial uses to a major urban center with a transit-oriented mix of commercial, residential and industrial uses by using these strategies to build on assets and overcome challenges:

  • Introduce higher density commercial development on local streets
  • Orient new buildings to street with minimal setbacks
  • Higher density commercial/retail, office, residential, and light industrial
  • Active street level uses
  • Restrict outdoor storage
  • Implement streetscape and lighting
  • Explore “bended street” concept for 3rd & Cesar Chavez
  • Create smaller blocks and connected street pattern
  • Implement sidewalk and on-street bike facilities
  • Improve transit access and safety between station and bus stops

Station area improvements expected to be completed by the anticipated opening of the line in 2018 include improved pedestrian/bicycle crossings; traffic signals at key intersections; creating a Border “Loop,” converting it to two-way traffic, with an improved streetscape, on-street parking, lighting, and sidewalks on Border; and LRT station amenities like off-platform way finding, lighting, and public art. Improvements to be completed beyond 2018 include building new east/west roadways to create smaller blocks and a connected street network, making it more pedestrian- and bike-friendly, and exploring creation of a transit plaza between the LRT station and the Farmers Market by Cesar Chavez Avenue.

5. Hennepin Energy Recovery Center – Carl Michaud, Director, Hennepin County Environmental Services
Hennepin County has withdrawn its request for a permit modification from the City of Minneapolis and for approval from the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (PCA) to increase the amount of waste processed at the Hennepin Energy Recovery Center. After requesting changes in its conditional use permit four years ago, the County has complied with numerous requests from the City and the PCA to provide information about emissions and environmental impact. Throughout this time there were also changes in regulations, so the goal posts kept moving. The Hennepin County Board eventually determined that the cost of proceeding outweighed the benefits. To minimize the landfilling of waste the Board decided to require the City to begin collecting organics and food waste by the end of 2014.

6. CenterPoint Energy Update – Al Swintek, Manager, Local Government Relations, CenterPoint Energy [PPT Presentation]
CenterPoint Energy has an extensive system (approximately 74 miles) of 20 and 24 inch diameter steel pipe. As soon as the weather warms they will begin a multi-year project to upgrade and rehabilitate approximately 61 miles of the system, starting in north Minneapolis. In June they will start work on Third and Fourth Streets North, taking a break in mid-July during the MLB All-Star Game activities. The project will enhance long-term safety, reliability, and better facilitate ongoing inspection of pipeline.

Areas disturbed by CenterPoint Energy’s construction—streets, sidewalks, boulevards and lawns—will be restored to original condition, typically within five to seven business days after construction is completed. The City of Minneapolis will perform the majority of the street paving and curb replacement.

To provide contact information and construction updates, CenterPoint has launched a new website: www.centerpointenergy.com/construction. Interested parties can also sign up for e-mail and text messages to receive project status updates.

7. Schafer Richardson North Loop Projects – Maureen Michalski, Senior Project Manager, Schafer Richardson [PPT Presentation]

  • Third North: 204 apartments; amenities include outdoor pool and hot tub, fire pit, fitness center, dog grooming facilities, guest suite, and club room. They expect to be completely leased by June.
  • Gurley Lofts: Historic renovation; 30 apartments (12 opened in December, 18 will open in May); 13,000 square feet of commercial space; 63% leased.
  • Cameron: After wrapping up public funding, construction will begin this summer on 44 units of affordable housing; this is the first affordable house project in the North Loop since 2001.
  • Bassett Creek parking lot: They are hoping to develop this surface parking lot in coming years.

8. Telling the Story: DAG 360 Then and Now – Chuck Leer, Chair, The 2020 Partners
The original DAG 360 report was funded by Target; Hennepin County took the lead, assisted by consultants Mary deLaittre and Mark Oyaas. Since 2006 great events have taken place, and it’s time to update the story. Several stakeholders—Target, Timberwolves | Lynx, Minnesota Twins, Covanta and Trammel Crow—have each agreed to donate $5,000 to fund the effort; others have been approached. Minnesota Ballpark Authority has offered the services of Tim Davis, its photographer/videographer. The Steering Committee passed the initiative with a nod, and Ms. deLaittre and Mr. Oyaas will again assist.

9. Promoting and Facilitating a Car-Free Life – Gene Tierney, Vice President, Northco [PPT Presentation]
Facing public policy issues including roadway congestion, infrastructure costs and greenhouse gas emissions, interested parties such as apartment dwellers, government agencies, downtown employers, civic organizations and neighborhood groups have a common goal: reduce dependence on individually-owned cars and lower vehicle miles traveled. The change agents are millennials and empty-nest baby boomers, who embrace a high-experience, low-tether way of living.

Car-Free Life is introducing a joint marketing program to promote and facilitate a Car-Free Lifestyle with three strategic design elements: (1) educational outreach and engagement; (2) carport availability security, utilizing rental car fleet at MSP; and (3) web-based consumer marketplace (www.carfreelife.org, not yet live), a resource for locating transit real estate, commercial and transportation services, and community which will be funded by selling advertising on the website.

10. 2020 Partners Meeting Schedule
The next meeting of the 2020 Partners will be on Tuesday, May 27, 2014.
All meetings will be held at HGA’s office in the Ford Center, from 5:00-6:30 p.m., unless otherwise specified in the meeting notices.

Copyright © The 2020 Partners. All Rights Reserved.