Stay in the Loop

We’re Getting A North Loop Park!

Something the North Loop Neighborhood Association has been pushing for for many years–a neighborhood park–is finally taking a major step forward.

The Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board approved the $2 million purchase of a surface parking lot along 3rd Street North with the intent to remove the asphalt and replace it with a new green space (see location on map below), with initial work beginning this summer.

Our thanks to Schafer Richardson for the rendering above.

The Park Board’s plans also envision making it easier for more people to reach the riverfront by providing new access for pedestrians on the southeast side of Washington Avenue to cross over. Here is their news release:

Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board approves purchase agreement for new parkland in North Loop neighborhood

25,000 square feet of new parkland along 3rd Street N between 7th and 8th Avenues helps fill gap for some of the 2% of Minneapolis residents who don’t live within 10-minute walk of a park

On April 7 Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board (MPRB) Commissioners approved Resolution 2021-157, which authorizes a purchase agreement to acquire 25,007 square feet of new parkland in North Loop neighborhood.

The land is currently a surface parking lot located on 3rd Street N between 7th and 8th Avenues. The purchase price of $2,101,567 includes property acquisition and development of base park amenities on the site prior to fee title transfer to the MPRB. Current property owner BC Properties is responsible for demolition of the existing parking lot, soil correction, sod placement and irrigation system installation. Park Dedication Fees available within the North Loop neighborhood area provides almost all funding to complete the purchase agreement.

North Loop has never had a neighborhood park and the area is identified as a park gap in The Trust for Public Land’s annual ParkScore metrics, which ranks the park systems of the 100 largest cities in the United States, based on park access and quality. In Minneapolis, 98% of residents live within a 10-minute walk of a park. This new parkland would help fill a gap for some of the 2% of residents who do not live within a 10-minute walk of a park.

The Downtown Service Area Master Plan (DSAMP) was approved in November 2017. It guides development of existing neighborhood parks and potential new parkland in downtown Minneapolis. DSAMP identifies this site as the western anchor of a linear park, called the 8th Avenue Streamscape, that will eventually wind through North Loop and provide a recognizable public connection to regional parkland on Mississippi Riverfront. The MPRB is currently working with several developers to complete this vision:

  • The Riverloop Connection, a Board-approved park dedication land-in-lieu agreement, provides public trails between West River Parkway and 8th Avenue.  It was constructed in the fall of 2020 and is open to the public.
  • The TractorWorks site, a Board-approved easement agreement, will create an accessible plaza connection funded by MPRB and local philanthropy.
  • The Nordic Property will fulfill park dedication requirements by providing public passage across its site.

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