Planned 38th Street restaurant 1024 E. 38th St., Minneapolis
Type: Retail Size: 1,738 square feet Lot size: 15,432 square feet
Developer: Kim Bartmann
Details: Minneapolis restaurateur Kim Bartmann, owner of the Bryant-Lake Bowl, Barbette and four other local establishments, has gained the city approvals needed for a planned new eatery on East 38th Street, which would feature a unique array of solar panels that would double as an outdoor patio canopy.
Bartmann needed a conditional use permit to gain permission to install the 17-foot-tall translucent collection of panels, which is actually a bit taller than the long-vacant, 1,128-square-foot building she intends to convert into a still-unnamed restaurant.
The panels from Minneapolis-based Sundial Solar will be one of the "green" themes of the new business, in which a 610-square-foot addition will be built onto the 1953 structure -- which over the years has been a barber shop, a grocery store and several different eateries.
The building and its parking lot take up only one portion of the large lot at the northwest corner of 38th Street and 11th Avenue S. Nearly a third of it is open space that has never been developed, which the restaurateur says he plans to turn into an extensive garden.
"The neighborhood people say there was a big, giant farmhouse there, which is why it doesn't really fit into the plat grid of the area," she said. "It appealed to me because it's a bigger piece of land, and I was interested in doing a garden combined with a restaurant."
Paula Westmoreland of the environmental group Permaculture Research Institute -- Cold Climate has been tapped to help with the landscape design. The group's focus is on creating sustainable, small-scale ecosystems.
"Hopefully, it will be kind of an ongoing educational installation showing people about the ideas of permaculture design," Bartmann said.
She added that she is still working on financing for the effort and as yet has no firm timetable for opening the new restaurant.
Don Jacobson is a St. Paul-based freelance writer. He can be reached at 651-501-4931.