The clock is now ticking for Glenn Ford, the entrepreneur pledging to bring a new grocery store to a barren corner of north Minneapolis.
The City Council on Friday gave final approval to a three-month extension of Ford’s right to develop a city-owned plot of land at Penn and Plymouth Avenues. It’s Ford’s second extension, after failing to meet prior development deadlines set by the city.
The 30,000 square foot Praxis Foods would have about 75 full time employees. Ford hopes to employ Minneapolis residents and eventually develop a stock of locally grown food.
“I understand that starting a new business on the North Side isn’t easy, particularly one as large and complicated as a grocery store, but it’s necessary,” council member Blong Yang said before Friday’s unanimous vote.
Ford now has until Feb. 20 to submit conceptual plans and until April 28 to submit architectural plans "showing substantial progress."
“If he doesn’t comply with all the milestones of the timeline presented by CPED…I cannot support this project any longer,” Yang said.
The city has in the past offered Ford $1.8 million toward the $7.2 million project in the form of environmental cleanup funds, tax abatement and forgivable business loans. The tax abatement and business grants are subject to future council approval, however.