The Oak Park Heights City Council is considering a proposal to open a sporting goods store and shooting range inside an abandoned Denny Hecker auto dealership.
The empty 56,000-square-foot Ford building at 12969 60th St. would come back to life, but with a new look, if Minnesota Outdoor Shooting Sports wins approval for the project. The project would include the store, two indoor gun ranges, a small gym and lounge, offices, storage/warehouse space and a coffee shop with exterior patio.
The building’s shape would remain much the same, but improvements would include warmer colors, a new entrance canopy, landscaping and a “water feature” at the entrance.
Large gun ranges would dominate interior space, but no outdoor ranges would be permitted, City Administrator Eric Johnson told the City Council. The proposed sporting business is next door to a proposed Pizza Ranch restaurant.
City amends winter parking ordinance
The Cottage Grove City Council earlier this month amended its parking ordinance to reduce the number of months in which on-street parking is restricted during snow removal.
The ordinance changed the period in which residents are prohibited from parking on the street — between the hours of 2 and 6 a.m. — to “between November 1 and March 31,” shaving two months off the restricted period, officials said. Previously, on-street parking was banned between Oct. 1 and April 30.
Police will not immediately start enforcing the amended ordinance, which went into effect Oct. 9, but instead place fliers on violating vehicles “as an educational tool,” officials said.
Volunteers sought to help clear buckthorn
The Friends of the Mississippi group is calling for volunteers to help clear nonnative bush from Cottage Grove Regional Park on Saturday, Nov. 2. Volunteers are needed from 9 a.m. to noon at the park, at 9940 Point Douglas Road.
FMR ecologist Karen Schik will be on hand to coordinate the group’s “Buckthorn Bust,” helping volunteers “restore this landscape by hauling or cutting brush,” according to a Washington County news release.
Lunch will be provided. For more information, call 651-222-2193 Ext. 24.
Oak Park Heights
MnDOT will open new highway lanes
Motorists should avoid the construction zone at the intersection of Hwy. 36 and Hwy. 95 from Sunday at 6 p.m. to Monday at 5 a.m., the Minnesota Department of Transportation said. During this time, crews will complete a major traffic switch as part of the St. Croix bridge project.
Motorists should expect delays throughout the construction zone. Southbound Hwy. 95 traffic will use a signed detour. Northbound Hwy. 95 traffic will not have a detour, MnDOT said.
When the traffic switch is complete, motorists will see a new ramp with a traffic signal between Hwy. 36 and Hwy. 95, new lanes on Hwy. 95 with portions of single-lane and two-lane traffic in each direction, and single-lane traffic on the new eastbound lanes of Hwy. 36.
If weather prevents the traffic switch on Sunday night, it will occur Oct. 28 at 9 p.m. to Oct. 29 at 5 a.m., and throughout the week if necessary.