Skip to main content

Rybak gives final state of city address, looks to future of Minneapolis

  • Author:
  • Updated:

Mayor R.T. Rybak began his final state of the city address Wednesday morning by envisioning Minneapolis in 2025, the Star Tribune reports.

In 12 years, "Nicollet Green" will have replaced Nicollet Mall, families will be moving en masse to North Minneapolis, streetcars and light rails are criss-crossing neighborhoods, a "Target Tower" is now part of the downtown skyline and the population has reached 450,000.

The area surrounding the new Vikings stadium, "Armory Yard," would include ropes courses and a skateboard park with a half-pipe shaped like a Viking ship.

About halfway through his speech, Rybak reverted back the reality of 2013 and offered advice on how to make his vision happen.

Managing money is a must, Rybak said. MinnPost reports during Rybak's 12-year tenure, Minneapolis has paid down $241 million in debt and cut spending by 16 percent. Target Center was also moved off the tab paid by property taxpayers, saving them $5 million a year.

The outgoing mayor emphasized keeping the city safe and renewed his call for gun violence.

Rybak touched on hopes for more public transportation. “We’re going to make it possible to live in this city without a car,” said Rybak.

MPR reports the mayor has already urged the City Council to come up with a funding plan for streetcars this year. Transportation planners are still exploring whether streetcars make sense along Nicollet and other major arterial streets, a prerequisite for pursuing federal funding.

As for education, Rybak addressed the academic achievement gap in Minneapolis schools and supports putting high-quality teachers in every classroom.

"The single most important school-related factor in student success is the quality of the classroom teacher," Rybak said.

Rybak is not seeking reelection. Five DFL candidates are vying for the job.

Rybak has denied rumors that he may be heading to Washington to be part of President Barack Obama’s second administration or running for governor in 2014. He formed his own political action committee (PAC) less than two weeks before his announcement about his mayoral future last December.

Next Up


1 dead, 2 with life-threatening injuries in Minnesota crash

The crash happened just after 7:30 p.m. Friday.

Image (1)

School bus carrying students plunges into river southwest of Fargo

None of the kids suffered life-threatening injuries, though some were taken to area hospitals.

Richfield High School

Richfield High School cancels weekend events after shooting

Two men were shot outside the school's football stadium

Screen Shot 2022-09-23 at 10.21.38 PM

Sound of shots, mass panic at Richfield football game streamed live on YouTube

Gunfire caused panic at a varsity football game Friday night.

J. Gordon

K-9 search leads to $36K fentanyl seizure during traffic stop

A traffic stop was made after the vehicle was seen speeding through the area.

Screen Shot 2022-09-23 at 5.20.08 PM

Gov. Walz reacts to Tuesday death of Mankato West student

The governor is a former geography teacher at the high school.

court room

Teen pleads guilty to Minneapolis carjacking, admits to others

The man was yanked out of the vehicle by witnesses before fleeing the scene.

Federal court house

Three plead guilty to roles in murder on Red Lake Reservation

The 2019 murder left another person seriously injured.


Sheriff: Heifer shot and butchered on farmer's pasture near Aitkin

Anyone with information regarding the incident is encouraged to call the Clearwater County Sheriff's Office.


Minneapolis murder suspect arrested in Wisconsin

The man has been wanted by police since the shooting happened in April.


Strib looks at 'Rybak Decade'

It's been exactly 10 years since Raymond Thomas Rybak took over leadership of his hometown. The Star Tribune looks at the highs and lows of Rybak's tenure as he works toward one of his most controversial initiatives to date: using millions in city money to keep the Vikings in Minneapolis.