The segment, built in the 1970s, had to come down to make way for light rail. For $49,500, it's yours.
An 83-foot piece of recent Twin Cities history -- a stretch of Minneapolis skyway -- is down on the ground and up for sale.
Minneapolis architect Ben Awes and his City Desk Studio partners offer in a Craigslist ad an array of possibilities for the 1,380-square-foot structure, all 140 tons of it sitting behind TCF Bank Stadium: office, bridge over a creek, ice rink warming house, etc.
"The one we are most excited about right now is a Minnesota State Fair booth," Awes said Thursday, two days after posting the ad with a starting price of $49,500. "Can't you imagine the Skyway Pronto Pup?"
This piece of skyway went up in the late 1970s across 5th Street, connecting the J.C. Penney and Powers department stores. Both stores closed in the mid-1980s. Then Powers was leveled in 1993, leaving the closed-off, weatherproof structure sticking out like a sore thumb.
With the arrival of light rail, the skyway segment needed to come down. The University of Minnesota bought it for $1 in 2002, thinking it could be used on campus for its original purpose. When that plan fell through, Awes said, his firm bought it "for a very small amount" in 2006.
"We need to save this thing," said Awes, who's making his fourth attempt to find a buyer. "This is a great example of urban recycling. ...This is a perfectly good building."
Awes said he believes no other piece of skyway -- designed by "the Father of the Skyways," Minneapolis architect Ed Baker -- has ever been made available for purchase.
It's made of steel, glass and concrete, with duct work and lighting still in place. "As a cabin it can have two bedrooms, a reading room, full bath, kitchen, dining and still have a 40-foot living room," reads the ad (minneapolis.craigslist.org/hnp/bfs/1582904851.html).
"Frankly, considering what cabins can cost on the North Shore," Awes said, "you can have the ultimate modern building on a world-class location."
Paul Walsh • 612-673-4482