Long-vacant home being torn down near East Isles

A large backhoe began ripping apart a developer-owned duplex a block off Lake of the Isles on Wednesday, removing one of the city's longest-vacant homes in a neighborhood that usually doesn't have them.

A crew began demolishing the 107-year-old duplex that developer Ross Fefercorn has owned for 16 years. It has been vacant for at least 10 years and has been on the city's list of vacant building registration list since 2007. That extended period drew complaints from the property's East Isles neighbors.

Fefercorn said he was debating whether to sell, rehab or raze the property at 2208 Irving Ave. S., for which he paid he paid $360,000 in 1998. He said he bought the duplex with the idea that he might live there some day, but he ran into unforeseen structural problems after he began to gut it.

The house was a personal project for a developer who lives a few blocks away in the Wedge area. He has developed commercial and residential projects from north Minneapolis to Mendota Heights. They include single-family housing along the Humboldt Greenway and Track 29 apartments along the Midtown Greenway.

Fefercorn has not said what his future plans are for the lot.

Steve Brandt

St. Paul

Council to consider tailgating at new ballpark

Tailgating near the new St. Paul Saints ballpark will be the subject of a public hearing Wednesday before the St. Paul City Council.

Council Member Dave Thune is sponsoring an amendment that would permit drinking of alcoholic beverages during Saints games or other ballpark events on nearby parking lots owned, leased or managed by the minor league team.

Tailgating would not be permitted during high school or intercollegiate events played at the ballpark, called CHS Field.

The proposed lots for tailgating are on the other side of the Lafayette Bridge from the ballpark — bounded by E. 4th Street on the north, the BNSF rail tracks on the east, Kellogg Boulevard on the south and Willius Street/Lafayette Boulevard on the west.

Tailgating was a time-honored tradition at the Saints' old home, Midway Stadium, where there was plenty of space right outside the ballpark to get ready for the game.

Thune's amendment also would remove the Taste of Minnesota and Riverfest Festival from the list of exceptions to the city's broad prohibition on drinking in public. Neither annual festival is still held in St. Paul.



New complex planned at Canterbury Park

A mixed-use complex that could house anything from restaurants to multifamily housing to sports venues is in the works at Canterbury Park.

Exactly what will be added to the casino and horse racing park in Shakopee is uncertain.

Developer Kraus-Anderson has been looking into building some type of multiuse complex by the racetrack. The developer and Canterbury officials recently announced they will begin negotiating an agreement for the financing and construction of the complex, according to a news release from Canterbury Park.

Negotiations are expected to last at least three months.

Jessie Van Berkel


Veterans to be honored by memorial-wall engraving

Plymouth is accepting applications for veterans to be included in the engraving of its new Veterans Memorial.

The memorial wall, which will include up to 1,300 names, is nearing completion.

Veterans don't need to live in Plymouth to be included on the wall. To apply, go to plymouthmn.gov/vetsmemorial to download the application; a fee of $175 is also required.

Applications and payment can be sent to: City of Plymouth Parks and Recreation, 3400 Plymouth Blvd., Plymouth, MN 55447. The deadline to apply for the first group of engravings is May 22.

New engravings will be added once a year.

Staff report