THE BEST OF SOUTHWEST MINNEAPOLIS — brought to you by the Lynnhurst Neighborhood Association (LYNAS)
Lynnhurst Neighborhood Association reached out to Council Member Linea Palmisano after our community meeting on 6/21 regarding the proposed development at the northwest corner of 50th & Bryant. Here is her response:
I am writing to follow up on your comments from the community meeting held this week for the new business going in at 50th and Bryant at the site of Joe’s Brake Shop. I want to thank the Lynnhurst Neighborhood Association (LYNAS) for sharing your feedback with me and for facilitating this important conversation.
I know how important this corridor is and I understand your concerns about the impact of this new development. I have been in contact with City staff to communicate this feedback and would like to provide an update about some of the issues I’ve heard raised.
Parking continues to be a primary concern at this intersection. One suggestion last night was to wait on a decision about the proposed parking variance until a parking study can be done. Unfortunately, land use plans once submitted have only a 60 day window of consideration allowed before land use is granted automatically by state law. The board chair was correct in that the city waits for an establishment to be open six months before a study can be requested for a potential Critical Parking Zone. However, we need a baseline and I find it very reasonable that given the variance request, we have a better understanding of the capacity of parking be reviewed now. I have asked the City’s Traffic Department to conduct an informal parking study over the next few weeks to gauge where we are at in terms of availability and use. I expect to have this feedback by mid-July.
Façade, Landscaping, and other Amenities
I have also heard feedback concerning the outside façade of the proposed building. City staff will be looking at this and have agreed that we should expect all four sides of the building to be aesthetically pleasing and in line with the rest of the businesses at 50th and Bryant. They will be looking at landscaping, building material, public transportation amenities and trash receptacles during their staff meeting next Wednesday and have promised to contact my office with their recommendations to improve the development.
Finally, I want to address the concern over delivery vehicles. Due to the size of the building (less than 10,000 sq ft), the developer is not required by our current zoning ordinances to include an off street loading dock. This requirement is something the City currently mandates for buildings larger than 20,000 square feet. Current plans have the developer receiving deliveries on the north side of their building on Bryant Ave S. I intend to monitor this and would appreciate feedback if neighbors feel this is something that can be improved in the future.
I’d like to outline the process of further consideration for this property. The project applicant has submitted their land use proposal and will be speaking with city staff next week and then most likely going before the Planning Commission on Monday July 17th. The Planning Commission is one of our civil boards and commissions and has decision-making authority on these types of projects. There is a public hearing at this meeting for those that wish to be heard, and the agenda is posted along with staff reports before the meeting. This commission’s decision can be appealed either by the applicant or by residents, in which case the project is then considered through City Council at Zoning and Planning committee. My role in this is to listen, to facilitate discussion with affected residents, and to preserve my ability to vote in an appeal situation. I will continue to keep an open mind until the end of a potential hearing on appeal, when I am allowed to hold and share an opinion on the project. In the meantime I work to influence this project through the applicant’s contact with you and our staff. This is why I have been working to connect this applicant to immediate neighbors and the Lynnhurst Neighborhood Organization to reach all interested residents. I want to give my thanks to the hardworking volunteers and staff of Lynnhurst Neighborhood Association to host last night’s meeting and to share your feedback and so timely, such that we could immediately act on a parking study. I am sorry that I was unable to attend this meeting personally.
Again, thank you all for sharing your concerns. I take it to heart and am hopeful that the changes we have made because of it will lead to a better development, which will add to the vibrancy of the neighborhood. Don’t hesitate to reach out if you have questions. I have copied Patty Day and Kendal Killian from my office, and Ruth Olson (neighborhood staff) and Paul Ragozzino from the Lynnhurst Neighborhood Organization.
Yours in service,
Council Member Linea Palmisano │ 13th Ward │ City of Minneapolis
350 South 5th Street – Room 307 │ Minneapolis, MN 55415
612.673.2213 │ firstname.lastname@example.org