Ramsey’s Next Generation of Mix of Uses Development

APA Minnesota Chapter


Thursday, September 28, 2017
4:30 p.m. - 5:30 p.m. CDT

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After decades of successful land use planning and implementation, Ramsey is poised to execute its next community asset. The Armstrong West Small Area Plan guides areas for housing, economic, and retail redevelopment. Infrastructure planning, cost-share/assessments, environmental review, and public engagement are just a few of the topics to be highlighted.

• Citizen Engagement. The City involved its residents in planning for the area long before any development was proposed. Rather than creating an aggressive and prescriptive master plan, the City established a set of guiding principles and interim land use designations to guide discussions with the community and perspective developers while the City studied the feasibility of the pending land use decision before it was finalized. This proved to be effective as the plan had some slight, but significant changes before final implementation.

• Urban Design. The City utilized urban design processes to study feasibility and compatibility with the surrounding area. This was not intended to be a master-planned area, but the urban design approach helped communicate vision and expectations. This also helped policy makers better visualize and study the interaction between to broader area along with existing neighborhoods and business districts. The City had to carefully communicate the intent of these site concepts as guiding principles and not prescriptive site master plans.

• Infrastructure Design the Study. The City proactively invested in infrastructure design in the collector road system that would service the three distinct sub- areas. This became also became a marketing tool to attract a user to match our vision. Previous plans for the area, while exciting potential future development, lacked financial realities of the market for the area. The plan was better supported by the community when realistic cost estimates were provided. 

• Financial Analysis. The City proactively established a policy for cost-share and assessment and is in the process of considering the establishment of a Tax Increment Finance District.

• Economic Development. The primary goal of the project was the establishment of a new business park. In achieving this goal, the City was able to set into motion succeeding on several other land use goals.


Eric Maass

Eric is a planner and designer in the community planning and economic development group at WSB & Associates. In that role he collaborates with communities to design site development concepts and small area land use plans. He uses his masters in landscape architecture coupled with experience in land use planning to ... Read More

Jason Aarsvold


Patrick Brama

Patrick Brama is the Assistant City Administrator/ Economic Development Manager for the City of Ramsey, located in the northwest metro of the Twin Cities. Patrick is a graduate of St. Cloud State University, where he received his Master’s in Public Administration and Bachelors in Community Development with a minor ... Read More

Tim Gladhill, AICP

Tim Gladhill is the Community Development Director for the City of Ramsey, MN and President of the American Planning Association, Minnesota Chapter. As Community Development Director for Ramsey, MN, Tim focuses on Comprehensive Planning and intergovernmental coordination to advance Ramsey’s long-term land use vision. Tim also led the final ... Read More

Contact Info

Jane Kansier, janeka@bolton-menk.com