April 22, 2009

Lifescience Corridor Hosts Community Planning Workshop

Phillips, Ventura Village and Elliot Park neighborhood residents will team with planners for one-day workshop to develop a long-range vision for the area.

CHICAGO — The Chicago Avenue Lifescience corridor represents a tremendous opportunity for Minneapolis, but currently lacks a long-range vision. Neighborhood stakeholders will team with visiting certified planning professionals for a one-day community planning workshop on Saturday, April 25. The workshop is part of the American Planning Association's National Planning Conference that runs April 25 through April 29, 2009.

Planning experts will work side-by-side with business leaders, community residents and institution representatives to develop a long-range vision for the area. The workshop objectives include:

  • Defining land-uses within the corridor
  • Addressing neighborhood safety concerns
  • Planning for possible transit routes
  • Identifying shared goals of residents, businesses, and institutions
  • Easing tensions between neighbors and lifescience institutions

The corridor provides tax credits to lifescience companies in an effort to attract and retain research and development jobs. The corridor links four diverse city neighborhoods that have faced challenges including crime, deteriorating housing and lack of livable wage jobs. The workshop will primarily focus on the Phillips neighborhood. A number of efforts have made a difference in the area, but the workshop will also focus on how to keep the momentum moving forward.

Workshop participants will be divided among breakout tables that will concentrate on land use and urban design; transportation; housing; economic development and employment; and livability concerns such as crime, safety and social needs.

Workshop participants will begin the day with a walking and bus orientation tour of the corridor. Then the participants will gather at Andersen Elementary School's Lunchroom A (2727 10th Ave. S) for brainstorming and developing plans for the area. Each group will present its work starting at 3:30 p.m.

Following the event, the workshop planning committee will produce a report of the findings.  The report will be available to the public and posted on APA's website at www.planning.org/communityassistance/.


Roberta Rewers, APA, 312-786-6395; rrewers@planning.org