The Minneapolis Community Development and Regulatory Services Committee on Tuesday briefly discussed -- and then approved -- a plan calling for a hotel and apartments above a parking ramp in the Downtown East mixed-use development.

In a report last week, city staff recommended a plan put forth by Ryan Cos., the Minneapolis-based developer of the Downtown East project. The $400 million project includes twin office towers for Wells Fargo & Co., 200 apartments, retail shops and restaurants, a 1,610-space parking ramp, and a nearly two-block public park near the new Vikings stadium.

The city solicited separate proposals for a spit of land along 4th St. S. and the space above the parking ramp. An alternate proposal for a 300-room Marriott-branded hotel for the ramp was submitted by Golden Valley-based Mortenson Development.

When asked to comment on the city's actions, Mortenson Development's Bob Solfelt, vice president and general manager, said in a statement, “We appreciate the consideration of our proposal for a hospitality-focused development as part of the redevelopment of Downtown East. Our proposal provides a viable, hotel solution with committed ownership and financing that would serve the needs of the downtown community as it continues to thrive. We look forward to continued discussions with city leaders about its potential."

Ryan proposed a 150-room Radisson Red hotel, and another 200 apartments. The developer is also offering to pay the city $5.7 million for the purchase of the land and the so-called “air rights” above the ramp, which will be used by office employees, the public and those using the Vikings stadium. The ramp itself will be owned by the Minnesota Sports Facilities Authority, the public body overseeing construction of the $1 billion sports stadium.

The City Council will consider the matter at its March 28 meeting.

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