Community members share visions for Uptown

More than 100 Uptown stakeholders shared their values, concerns and visions for the area this month at two city-hosted visioning sessions.

The Minneapolis Department of Community Planning and Economic Development scheduled the sessions to get community input for the Uptown Small Area Plan, a land use plan for Uptown that kicked off last spring. A steering committee made of local community members and City Councilmember Ralph Remington (10th Ward) was assembled to advise city staff involved in the project. The architecture firm Cuningham Group was recently hired as a consultant.

Interested parties at the visioning sessions included residents, business owners, property owners, developers and others, said Amanda Arnold, principal city planner for Southwest. Participants split into small groups to share their thoughts and each group reported its key talking points. Each participant also filled out a form describing what they valued in Uptown and what their concerns were.

A professional facilitator was still compiling the collected data as of press time, but Arnold mentioned a few of the top values and concerns:

-- Uptown is unique and funky and people want to keep it that way;

- Attracting and maintaining a diversity of people, businesses and housing is important;

- Uptown needs improved transportation and parking; and

- Participants wanted a walkable, comfortable, green environment that incorporated quality architecture.

&#8220People want a lot of the same stuff for Uptown,” Arnold said.

The Uptown plan is expected to take 12-18 months to develop and last for about 20 years.