This once-in-a-generation opportunity will advance the University’s vision for an integrated community that brings learning, culture, new job creation, inclusive economic opportunities, vibrant public amenities, and diverse housing choices.
Key land purposes reflect the University’s long-standing public service mission:
1) First-floor experiences driven by ground-level retail
A robust first floor will feature amenities that reflect the needs of the neighborhood and the University community. These will include a mix of retail, culture, dining, and other uses designed to create an active pedestrian experience where all will feel welcome. A guiding principle in retail tenancy will be to create opportunities for independent small businesses to find a new home and thrive.
2) Commercial space for research and start-ups
Commercial spaces will attract legacy Minnesota industries as well as incubator, innovation, and research start-ups spaces. This could comprise one-third to one-half of the total project development space. This segment of the project is what sets it apart from other mixed-use redevelopments. The commercial space will be centered around supporting innovation, likely in biotechnology and life sciences. Together, the University and the private sector will launch and grow new technologies in the region and bring jobs and economic vitality to the district.
3) Multifamily residential space
The direction of multifamily residential is not finalized, except for an expectation that it will add to the diversity of the housing stock in the immediate area and will not be targeted toward undergraduate students. It may be ownership or rental, incorporating a range of household sizes and ages.
4) Hospitality, event and gathering space
One of the most articulated desires, expressed both inside the University and in the community, is hotel and hospitality space that ideally includes meeting and event space proximity. Here, members of the University and the broader community will come together to listen and learn from each other.