Rendering from Upper Harbor Terminal presentation
A development team on Wednesday unveiled a proposed massive remake for the Upper Harbor Terminal, on nearly a mile of city-owned riverfront in north Minneapolis.
The team — made up of United Properties, Thor Cos. and First Avenue Productions — revealed a draft redevelopment concept with an outdoor amphitheater, hotel, residential building and offices.
If the plan is approved by the Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board and the City Council, construction could begin as early as 2020. The public had its first chance Thursday to provide feedback on the plan, and more opportunities are scheduled in the next few weeks.
The redevelopment could breathe new life into nearly 50 acres of land at the end of Dowling Avenue just east of Interstate 94, a postindustrial relic. Planners estimate the Upper Harbor could generate $125 million in private economic development in its first phase.
A main feature would be a performance venue called the Upper Harbor Community Performing Arts Center, similar in concept to the Hollywood Bowl in Los Angeles and Millennium Park in Chicago.
The center would have room for 10,000 patrons, 6,000 seated and 4,000 on the lawn or in 10 private boxes. On days without shows, it would open its green space to the public.
“The birthplace of the Minneapolis Sound, north Minneapolis has a rich musical and cultural legacy,” says a new presentation on the redevelopment. “The Upper Harbor Community Performing Arts Center aims to amplify and extend that legacy.”
The first phase could include a residential building with up to 140 units, some of them affordable, and a hotel with up to 180 rooms. Both buildings would have commercial space and could rise as high as six stories. A five-story office building and parking is envisioned.
The development could feature a community innovation hub with a mix of office, production space and educational space.
It would include 15½ acres of park space and possibly a plaza, riverfront promenade and bike-pedestrian parkway.
Gov. Mark Dayton signed a bonding bill in May that included $15 million for redevelopment of the Upper Harbor Terminal, and the city of Minneapolis and the Park Board are contributing $16 million. Public funds would pay for infrastructure and amenities such as site clearing and moving power lines.
A 2020 bonding request of $10 million to $20 million and a significant capital campaign will be needed to help pay for the center.
Community meetings and open hours sessions on the draft plan:
• Aug. 20, 4-6 p.m., Good Deal Oriental Foods, 1800 Lowry Av. N.
• Aug. 21, 1-3 p.m. Hennepin County Library-Webber Park, 4440 Humboldt Av. N.
• Aug. 22, 1-3 p.m., Serendripity Spot, 3300 Lyndale Av. N.
• Aug. 28, 6-8 p.m., Minneapolis Park Board headquarters, 2117 West River Road N., second-floor boardroom.
• Sept. 8, 11 a.m.-1 p.m., Hennepin County Library-North Regional, 1315 Lowry Av. N.
Nicole Norfleet • 612-673-4495