The ribbon will be cut Tuesday for the Eden Prairie branch of the Hennepin County Library, which is reopening after being closed for more than a year for a $12.1 million renovation project.
New features at the library include an open multiuse area with height-adjustable computer stations and flexible furniture arrangements. The library offers seating around a refaced fireplace, conference and meeting rooms, an outdoor lounge and a teen area for after-school study.
Other improvements include electric vehicle charging stations, LED fixtures and expanded use of natural light.
The ribbon-cutting, which is open to the public, is set for 5 p.m. Tuesday. The library, at 565 Prairie Center Dr., will be open 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.
City looking into grocery lockers
Farmington is considering allowing Hy-Vee to install lockers in the city, some refrigerated, where customers might pick up groceries they have ordered online.
City Council Member Joshua Hoyt said he learned about the locker idea while consulting with Hy-Vee on its future Farmington store. The council last week told city staffers to research where two banks of lockers, each 11 by 8 feet, might go, along with requirements for electricity and insurance.
“I think it’s a great opportunity,” Hoyt said. “How it’s going to be used and the general need from the community is yet to be determined.”
The city lost its only grocery store in December when Family Fresh Market closed. Stores, churches and food shelves have been providing transportation and meals.
Council OKs native plantings for yards
Falcon Heights residents and business owners now will be able to landscape their yards with native plantings following the City Council’s decision to amend city code to allow for taller native grasses, plants, flowers and shrubs.
There are some limitations for native landscaping, including setback requirements and annual cutting. City Administrator Sack Thongvanh said those rules are in place to ensure that landscaping is tidy, considerate of neighbors and thoughtfully planned, not simply an excuse to skip mowing.
Before the change, properties could plant only “turf grass and trees,” according to a city report.
First apartments boost density
An apartment complex and a senior living community both opened recently in East Bethel, the first of each in the Anoka County city.
East Bethel Village Apartments is a mostly market-rate, 68-unit complex, and plans are in the works to build an addition. At least 20% of the units will be available to residents with incomes at or below 50% of median income statewide, in exchange for which the city provided the developer with tax-increment financing of up to $826,000 to pay for infrastructure and landscaping.
Cedar Creek Senior Living also has opened, with 70 units for independent, assisted living and memory care.
East Bethel, which has mostly single-family houses on 1- to 2-acre lots, is looking to add more density to accommodate a growing population.