Ryan Cos. 'upscales' its proposal for Downtown East

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Should it be a new Marriott or a spendier Radisson tailored to millennials? That’s the question the Minneapolis City Council will have to decide next month.

The Star Tribune reports Ryan Cos. has altered its proposal to develop part of Downtown East, the five city blocks near the $1 billion Vikings stadium.

At issue is what to build above the 1610-space parking ramp.

In addition to the parking ramp, Ryan had initially proposed two office towers anchored by Wells Fargo & Co., 200 apartments, retail shops, restaurants and a large public park.

Thursday Ryan submitted plans to replace some of the apartments with a new type of Radisson Hotel.

Called Radisson Red, the new brand will offer rooms that resemble studio apartments. Smartphone and tablet applications will be used to conduct traditional hotel transactions like ordering food and paying bills.

Thorsten Kirschke, president of the Carlson Rezidor Hotel Group for the Americas, confirmed his company was in talks with Ryan.

“This specific development opportunity is ideally aligned with our recent announcement of Radisson Red, our new upscale select hotel brand,” Kirschke said.

The Radisson Red website says the concept will roll out in 2015, in cities across the world. It describes the new hotel as a place where “imagination designs the experience, and experience invents the future.”

Mortenson Development, the builder of the new stadium, has a competing proposal for what should go above the parking ramp; a $63 million, 300-room Marriott hotel.

Ryan’s new plan calls for a 27-story structure that would combine a hotel with apartments, and cost $101 million.

The City Council expects to choose between the Ryan and Mortenson proposals by March 28.

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