Minneapolis momentum: City sets record with $2 billion in new construction permits


If the city of Minneapolis was seeking a bird to exemplify it, it might consider the crane.

The Star Tribune reports on an unprecedented building boom in the state's largest city in 2014. The newspaper looked at new construction permits and found that, for the first time, Minneapolis had issued $2 billion worth in a single year.

MPR News noted that the new construction in 2014 represented an approximate 60 percent increase from the previous year.

The Vikings stadium and the Wells Fargo Downtown East development fueled the year's record-setting boom. Those projects accounted for about $1 billion of the city’s 2014 construction permits.

Residential development, including several higher-end apartment towers, also drove the growth. Permits were issued for more than 2,000 housing units in 2014. About a third of the new construction in 2014 was for housing to accommodate the city's growth. The population of Minneapolis cracked 400,000 for the first time since the 1970's.

While the entire city grew, the bulk of new construction is concentrated downtown and in nearby neighborhoods. More than 65 percent of the new construction permits were issued for projects in the North Loop, Downtown East, the downtown riverfront and northeast Minneapolis.

Doug Kress, director of the Minneapolis Development Services Center, told MPR the Minneapolis building boom is expected to continue. He said that at least 10 major buildings are "already in the pipeline."

In a December post called "10 development projects that will transform MSP in 2015," The Line Media provided a roundup of "exciting architectural and development additions to Minneapolis and St. Paul." The story, which made a point of looking at projects besides the new Vikings stadium and the Downtown East project, cited the redevelopment of the Nicollet Mall, the Pillsbury A Mill Renovation, and the new Water Works Park planned for the Mississippi waterfront near the Stone Arch Bridge as pivotal projects in Minneapolis.

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