MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — About 1,500 people have signed a petition to keep the Linden Hills neighborhood of south Minneapolis just as it is.

A developer wants to put in a 5-story building, but residents say the building will change the character of their neighborhood.

Mark Dwyer, the project developer, held an open house Sunday to show Linden Hills residents the building he hopes will stand in the heart of the neighborhood’s business district, on the corner of Upton Avenue South and West 43rd Street.

“We wanted to bring out scale models and things that really give people a sense for how this will fit into the context of Linden Hills,” Dwyer said.

The building will include space for condominiums, offices and retail development, he said.

But the city’s zoning code does not allow buildings in this neighborhood to stand more than three stories high. So Dwyer says he needs the support of the city and residents to make the project a reality.

“Change isn’t easy. It’s our belief that a project like this can be steered in a better direction by people who love the neighborhood,” Dwyer said.

Some who showed up at the open house had different ideas about the development and weren’t afraid to voice them. One of those people was Bob Russell, a Linden Hills resident.

“We’re not against development,” Russell said. “We are simply against the scale and the size of what he is projecting to put in.”

Maria Nelson, co-founder of Linden Hills Residents for Responsible Development, echoed Russell’s thoughts.

“The scope of it is so large that it’s not in line with the other developments that have been in the neighborhood,” she said.

Those not in favor of the development also don’t like the fact that the neighborhood Famous Dave’s would be torn down to make room for condominiums, which many think are unneeded.

However, it may take months before a decision is made on whether or not the proposed building would be built.

Reg Chapman

Comments (10)
  1. Lucy Voltz says:

    FYI. This Open House was sponsored by the Linden Hills Neighborhood Council not the developer. The developer was invited to attend, but did not sponsor not host this event.

  2. Matt says:

    I’m emailing my CM in support of this project.

  3. Realist04 says:

    Change makes me curl up in the corner in the fetal position!

  4. H. Schetten says:

    Many folks are just fine with a three-story building here. But this developer’s plan is equivalent to cramming a McMansion in a neighborhood of small houses.

    1. Matt says:

      Why don’t those “many folks” buy the land for the market value and build their three story building? That’s how it works. Those who own the land and play by the existing rules are the ones who get to determine what’s done. Sebastian Joes up on the hill would be level with this building because of the grade between 43rd and 44th. Not to mention the existing >5 story buildings on Upton and 44th.

      1. Bob says:

        He does not “own the land” he owns “Options” to buy the land, big difference. He is not “playing by the rules”, he is trying to get the rules changed, big difference.

  5. Jolene says:

    This development is a great addition to the neighborhood and would bring vitality and needed traffic to support the financial viability of Linden Hills. The sad part about this is the neighbor pitted against neighbor attitude that the opposition group has started. Now instead of enjoying the holiday decorations we have to see the lawn signs littering the neighborhood instead.

    1. Sara says:

      In what way have those opposed pitted neighbor against neighbor? Its appears that if someone voices the opinion that Linden Corner will not be a great addition to the neighborhood – they are either insulted as a NIMBY (see above comment) or accused of bullying (see above comment). These comments are false. Over 1700 neighbors have come together because they believe this development will destroy the very character of the LInden Hills village – a gem in our city. Most of these neighbors are pro-development and favor a reasonable alternative for the corner that is respectful of the intentions of our zoning laws and the nearby residential homes.

  6. JustaThought says:

    I dont get a vote because I don’t live there, but all I want to say is with the right 4th floor setbacks you won’t even notice the height. A development finished recently near me in DC (google it: 875 N NW) feels like three stories from the street and you’d never know its actually 5. Really gives it a neighborhood feel and might be a good middle ground.