44th & France - Edina/Minneapolis

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44th & France - Edina/Minneapolis

Postby Multimodal » May 30th, 2017, 9:08 pm

As part of Edina's Comprehensive Plan Update this year & next, Edina will be creating small area workgroups for 3 neighborhood areas. The first one to kick off is the 44th & France Small Area Plan Work Group.

There's a page on the city's web site for the work group, but it seems to be just a placeholder for now, as it comes up blank:
https://edinamn.gov/index.php?section=4 ... -WorkGroup

The kickoff meeting was May 15th, and the handout is here:
http://edinamn.gov/edinafiles/files/Cit ... -SAPWG.pdf

The first working meeting was this evening, and presumably there should be a handout on the city's web site soon.

The big news tonight is one of the members had to resign, as he is a developer and bought a prominent building on the Edina side of France to redevelop. The word is that several other buildings are also for sale, so the area will be changing underneath the feet of the working group as it tries to plan a direction for the area for the next 25 years.

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Re: 44th & France - Edina/Minneapolis

Postby Anondson » August 18th, 2017, 6:52 pm

Star Tribune on the topic of the Edina Cleaners redevelopment proposal.

http://www.startribune.com/gateway-to-e ... 441055643/

And the neighborhood pushback is getting intense.

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Re: 44th & France - Edina/Minneapolis

Postby Multimodal » November 2nd, 2017, 11:29 pm

The City of Edina redesigned its web site, so the Small Area Plans are now here:
https://www.edinamn.gov/657/Small-Area-Plans

There has been huge pushback by (some) residents. Rather than a discussion of what the area could be (ped/bike infrastructure, etc.) it’s turned into a discussion of height & density, as viewed through a myopic lens of traffic, congestion, & parking.

A very misleading petition was sent around, which 300+ people signed because if what it said was true it would be scary. They drummed up fears of “a Grand & Excelsior or 50th/France concept”, despite the fact that the entirety of the Edina side of 44th & France could fit into 1 or 2 parcels of Grand & Excelsior.

NIMBYism 101.

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Re: 44th & France - Edina/Minneapolis

Postby RailBaronYarr » November 3rd, 2017, 9:27 am

It's an effective scare tactic because nobody is actually pushing for this node to look like Excelsior & Grand. But the reality is that's what the vision for any node like this around Minneapolis or Edina should be. That the draft SAP envisions 2-3 story buildings a parcel off France Ave is a major problem.

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Re: 44th & France - Edina/Minneapolis

Postby Multimodal » November 7th, 2017, 1:11 pm

3-4 stories there seems fine by me, with a potential 5th story in return for the developer contributing to better infrastructure.

A (retracted) proposal for redeveloping the dry cleaners’ building included a partial 5th story, in return for more green space. That seemed a reasonable compromise.


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Re: 44th & France - Edina/Minneapolis

Postby Multimodal » November 9th, 2017, 8:27 am

Image
When you look at the scale of 44th & France compared to any other commercial node in the area, it’s small.

I don’t think the solid 5-6 stories of Excelsior & Grand is appropriate for something this small, and directly adjacent to homes.

The small area plan guiding principles specify the greatest height along France Ave., scaling down as you move towards homes. That makes perfect sense to me.

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Re: 44th & France - Edina/Minneapolis

Postby RailBaronYarr » November 9th, 2017, 8:57 am

Okay I fully realize how incredibly vain and shitposty it is to self-cite streets.mn posts I've written, but they go a long way in explaining why I feel the way I do about why conventional planning that makes "perfect sense" is wrongheaded, without the need for tons of words here. So. https://streets.mn/2015/09/17/high-rise ... -transect/ https://streets.mn/2016/10/13/dense-dev ... riors-too/ https://streets.mn/2016/02/07/no-large- ... your-home/

We could, with the flick of a digital pen, expand the borders of what the "44th and France" study area is. We don't need to convince ourselves that buildings 4-6 stories (or taller) are "incompatible" with single family homes. We could also have the area that allows 3-4 story transitional "missing middle" housing like 4-6 plexes and attached townhomes be 2-4 blocks from the core while the core itself allows 6 story buildings (maybe more!).

Unlike the Grandview area, 44th and France has the benefit of all-day, frequent transit service to Southdale, Uptown, and downtown. We could very easily apply an aBRT template or sorely lacking express service to downtown along the 6's path and build off the high (especially for a wealthy car-owning area) ridership. Edina sorely lacks walkable places with a variety of housing options. Grandview is fine, and I certainly hope there are improvements to the walking grid and transit service (heck, I even conjured up a highway BRT route for TH100 serving the district in this transit post), but it's walled off by a freeway, and a giant golf course beyond it. Edina can do both and would be better for it.

44th/France is a natural spot for a much larger and complete district than envisioned that bridges the gap between 50th/France and Linden Hills. The more people and development we allow there, the more the people in the outlying areas of each of those districts have options for shopping/etc within walking distance. The draft plan allows for maybe 5-10 years of redevelopment because it is so very restrictive in both geographic scope and what it allows where. That's a shame. Protecting the owners of $750k++ houses (on both sides of the border!!) from having to live next to 4+ story apartments or condos is not a worthy social goal.

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Re: 44th & France - Edina/Minneapolis

Postby Multimodal » April 3rd, 2018, 10:03 pm

Tonight, the Edina City Council approved the 44th & France Small Area Plan.

They did vote to expand it by including 2 single-family homes. Neighborhood nodes do need to grow as we get denser.

A developer will have a proposal for redevelopment of the dry cleaner’s lots (and those 2 houses) as a sketch plan for the planning commission & city council in the next few weeks.

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Re: 44th & France - Edina/Minneapolis

Postby Multimodal » April 3rd, 2018, 10:21 pm

RailBaronYarr wrote:Okay I fully realize how incredibly vain and shitposty it is to self-cite streets.mn posts I've written, but they go a long way in explaining why I feel the way I do about why conventional planning that makes "perfect sense" is wrongheaded, without the need for tons of words here. So. https://streets.mn/2015/09/17/high-rise ... -transect/
The article points out that the Vancouver tower, among others, are within a mile of the “business district” (downtown?). Note that 44th & France is 6 miles from downtown Mpls, and 4 miles from “downtown Edina”, the towers proposed in Southdale (e.g., Guitar Center site).

The remaining photos in the article from around the world show single family homes across the street from moderate sized towers.

I can’t emphasize enough just how small a node 44th & France is (the Edina side, anyway). It is literally 2 blocks tall by 1 block wide at its widest. There is no across-the-street spacing to have a tower there that would look anything like what those photos show.

The developer’s proposal will claim 2 SFHs to expand the node slightly, and will be 4 stories along France. I’m surprised he’s not pushing for another story. But I think that’s an appropriate size for the node.

It’s not an earth-shattering increase in density, but it works for that tiny node.

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Re: 44th & France - Edina/Minneapolis

Postby Multimodal » April 3rd, 2018, 10:26 pm

There is a 15+ story tower proposed for Grandview, and while that is even further from downtown Mpls or Edina, it is next to a major highway, so it fits better there than a tower would at 44th & France.

France is a county road, but at 44th it’s nothing like it is in the Southdale area, and north of 44th it peters out into a 2-land road between a golf course and SFHs and basically ends at Excelsior.

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Re: 44th & France - Edina/Minneapolis

Postby Anondson » April 18th, 2018, 12:20 pm

Finance and Commerce on the proposal for the Edina Cleaners site.

https://finance-commerce.com/2018/04/fo ... ment-plan/

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Re: 44th & France - Edina/Minneapolis

Postby Anondson » October 2nd, 2018, 9:44 pm

Council approved preliminary site design for 4500 France, the dry cleaner building.

https://twitter.com/edinacityman/status ... 0719150080

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Re: 44th & France - Edina/Minneapolis

Postby MNdible » October 3rd, 2018, 9:19 am


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Re: 44th & France - Edina/Minneapolis

Postby QuietBlue » October 3rd, 2018, 9:54 am

I think that's typical for most of the suburbs around here. Being in 2 or 3 different districts seems to be the norm.

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Re: 44th & France - Edina/Minneapolis

Postby Anondson » October 3rd, 2018, 10:10 am

While it’s not 44th/France related, objections to development in Edina most regularly cites crowding the quaint village schools by Southdale-area apartments.

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Re: 44th & France - Edina/Minneapolis

Postby Anondson » October 3rd, 2018, 5:29 pm

Msp Business Journal on it. Includes a drawing from across Sunnyside.

https://www.bizjournals.com/twincities/ ... roval.html

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Re: 44th & France - Edina/Minneapolis

Postby Multimodal » October 23rd, 2018, 7:03 am

Here’s a short video from the city:

https://youtu.be/30X2aV_K0K0

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Re: 44th & France - Edina/Minneapolis

Postby Multimodal » June 10th, 2019, 10:18 am

This 4500 France Ave. luxury apartments has a name and a brief web site: The Lorient.

https://thelorient.com/


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