Downtown Minneapolis Neighborhood Association
Minutes from Board of Directors Meeting on Tuesday, October 12, 2004
800 LaSalle Avenue South, Suite 131, Minneapolis

I.          Call to Order and Introductions

Tom Hoch, the Chair, called the meeting to order at 6:30 p.m.  All other board members were in attendance:  David Abele; Dee Cotten; Andrew Hauer; Kim Motes, Vice Chair; Gene Nessly, Treasurer; Jodi Pfarr; and Carletta Sweet, Secretary.  Nonboard members in attendance included:  Minneapolis architects John Barbour and Janis LaDouceur of Barbour/LaDouceur Design Group (BLDG); Alan Bernard, aide to 2nd Ward Councilmember Paul Zerby; June Harmon, financial consultant; Ron Johnson and landscape architect Jeff McDonell, 10th and Nicollet Mall development; CCP Luther Krueger, MPD 1st Precinct; Sarah McKenzie, Skyway News journalist; and George Rosenquist, Downtown West resident.

II.        Update from Councilmember Paul Zerby’s Office

Alan Bernard announced his imminent departure (October 29, 2004) and the arrival (October 18, 2004) of CM Zerby’s new aide, Greg Zimback, the neighborhood coordinator for Southeast Como, who already has a lot of experience working with the City in inspections and the police department.  Alan is departing because he is running for the 10th Ward City Council seat.

Alan then distributed and explained the recent amendment to the sunset clause of the tailgating ordinance which expands the area for tailgating that was lost due to construction projects.  This expanded area includes from the riverfront to 6th Street South (Elliot Park was very firm that they did not want tailgating to encroach into their neighborhood) and from 4th to 11th Avenues South as well as the rapid park by the Target Center.  Tailgating can occur only in private parking lots and owners willing to participate must provide a sufficient number of port-a-potties, remove all litter after each event, and provide on-site security. 

Lastly, Alan updated the board on “booting” or automobile immobilization.  Due to complaints received from the southeast and downtown areas regarding the method of operation, Paul drafted an ordinance to make some changes to the way booting is handled in Minneapolis – i.e., requiring employees to wear an identifiable uniform, attend a conflict management course, and cease waiting in lots looking for violators.  Since only the first two of Paul’s changes (and not the third related to cease waiting in lots) passed before the City Council last Friday, he voted to repeal the entire booting ordinance; the rationale being that if booting companies couldn’t come up with a compromise on their method of operation that they shouldn’t be allowed to do business at all.  Alan then distributed the revised booting ordinance which in essence states that this type of immobilization is not allowed.  A public hearing has been set before Public Safety & Regulatory Services on October 27, 2004, 1:30 p.m. in Room 317 of City Hall.    

III.       Consideration of September 2004 Minutes

The minutes from the September 14, 2004 board meeting were unanimously approved.

IV.       Consideration of September 2004 Financial Statements

June Harmon distributed and Gene explained the F2004 Budget vs. Actual as of September 2004; the Profit & Loss YTD Comparison statement for September 2004; and the Wells Fargo check register for September 1-30, 2004.  These financial documents were unanimously received and filed.

Additionally, June announced that she just received $8,000, the first installment of the $40,000 grant from the Mississippi Watershed Management Organization toward the Star Tribune storm water runoff demonstration project.  Also, June advised that she and Gene attended a “procedures audit” that afternoon with the auditors to review the 2004 books which were deemed to be in order.  DMNA will receive a confirmation letter to that effect.      

V.        First Precinct Update

Luther Krueger announced that the next meeting with the Warehouse District Bar Owners Association will be held on Tuesday, October 26, 2004, 2:00 p.m. at the 1st Precinct.  These meetings (usually scheduled on every third Tuesday of the month) are held to raise awareness of public urination and the responsibilities of bar owners related thereto.

Luther also discussed the MPD’s warning letter to bar owners regarding over-serving patrons as a means to induce compliance (for reference see Skyway News article “Overserved and exposed!” in the October 4-10, 2004 edition).  Over-occupancy, another bar-related issue the MPD has been focusing on over the past 3 years, was also cited as a catalyst to over-serving.  However, between 1999 through summer of 2003, calls for police service to 1st Precinct bars steadily went down, then reached a plateau late last year.  And even though these service calls are now creeping back up, overall they are considered to be low on a per bar/per bar stool basis given the addition of approximately five to six new bars per year.  

Responding to inquiries regarding remedies for loitering, Luther reiterated that there is no such thing as the crime of loitering on public property.  However, in order to arrest someone with loitering, you must specify a crime and show probable cause, e.g., consume alcohol, prostitution.  Tom and Kim reemphasized the need for a stronger police presence (especially along Hennepin Avenue) to help remedy the problem.  And for the board’s edification, Tom mentioned that if anyone was thinking of pursuing the police buy-back program to beef up patrol that the hourly rate has jumped from $39.11 to $50.00.

Lastly, Luther informed the board of a new ordinance in place to restrict bar owners from distributing placards containing liquor advertisements and urged the community to seek more restrictive rules through the City Council.         

VI.       Land Use Committee Update

10th Street and Nicollet Mall

BLDG gave a presentation on their preliminary design for a 48-story, mixed-use project to be erected at South 10th Street and Nicollet Mall on the site currently occupied by Let It Be Records at 1001 Nicollet Mall, Sawatdee at 1005 Nicollet Mall, and Key’s Café at 1007 Nicollet Mall.  The adjacent property, the historic Handicraft Guild Building containing Hell’s Kitchen at 889 South 10th Street, is also part of the project and BLDG is committed to its preservation and restoration.

Respectful to the character of the community, the preliminary design calls for a formal “business suit” façade facing the downtown office buildings to the north and a less formal, playful façade facing the entertainment buildings to the south.  The plans call for over 15,000 square feet of retail space on the ground level (the goal is to attract all locally-owned small businesses to the space, and to retain all three current tenants at the same rents prior to construction for Year 1 as inducement to remain) with office space on two levels.  Above the office segment will be a step-back with lofts and an outdoor terrace; then above that segment another step-back and a glassy condominium tower with an arc running down the middle and shooting out from the roof.  There will be six levels of parking (four below and two above ground) with a parking ratio of 1.1 plus 79 reserved stalls for commercial use.  No skyway connection negotiations have been initiated. 

  

Barbour and LaDouceur have partnered with Ron Johnson and Jeff McDonell on this $75 million project.  The 300+ condominium units are likely to fall within the same price range of other current developments, i.e., $250,000 to more than $1 million for penthouse units.

No City variances or subsidies are being sought for this project.

Infinite Holding, Inc.

Andy briefed the board on the Class B liquor license, caterer’s license, sidewalk license, and 2:00 a.m. permit that Infinite Holding is seeking for the business formerly known as Chessen’s at 328 South Third Street.  The board unanimously recommended approval stipulating that the three conditions normally required of bar owners be met.

21st Century Towers

Andy then updated the board on the variances (i.e., building setback from 41’ to 20’; balcony size from 4’ into side yard to 7’ into side yard)) being sought for Phase 1 of the 24-story, mixed-use project located at 240 Hennepin Avenue South by Thomas Dolphin, owner, Bruce Knutson, architect, and Jim Stanton, developer.  After discussing design aesthetics, façade materials, parking options, et cetera (for such a prominent building to be erected across from the new public library), the board unanimously recommended no variances be approved due to a lack of information.       

VII.     Kids, Education, the Environment and You

Since the representative from KEEY did not appear, Tom will follow up with her to reschedule a presentation at a later date to explain the flower planting employment program she conducts with kids in downtown Minneapolis.

 

VIII.    General Membership Meeting Update

Four 2-year terms will expire:  Kim Motes, Gene Nessly, Jodi Pfarr and Carletta Sweet, all of whom plan to run.  The meeting will be held on Tuesday, November 9, 2004 6:30 p.m. at the same location, University of St. Thomas Law School.  The agenda is set (elected officials are scheduled to speak), advertisements are in place (Skyway News, postcard mailings, and email lists), and refreshments will be provided. 

IX.       Plan Modification Strategies Update

Kim presented the two affordable housing RFPs the NRP Implementation Committed reviewed and approved for funding on Tuesday, October 5th for board consideration:

·         Brighton Development Corporation’s St. Anthony Mills Apartments Phase 2 located at 2nd Street South and Chicago Avenue South.  Last year DMNA awarded $250,000 to Phase 1 of this project.   Although its current application was for $238,095, the IC recommends funding $250,095 to expend all of the remaining affordable housing funds.
 

·         Project for Pride in Living’s Elliot Park Commons at 610 East 15th Street, a rehabilitation of the 24 one- and two-bedroom affordable and supportive housing for the mentally ill.  The IC recommends funding at the requested level of $125,000.  Kim advised that according to Dolly, because of the population being served this property is not required to meet the American Disability Compliance, and they still have a number of years remaining on its old Section 8 certificate.  And while under construction, tenants will be moved to either vacant units within the property or to units in their other property.

Thereafter, the board unanimously approved the funding of these projects as recommended.

X.        Other Business

Tom announced the November 12th deadline for registering neighborhood electors and alternates for the upcoming NRP Policy Board election. Electors and alternates must reside in the neighborhood they are representing and be at least 18 years of age as of November 18, 2004.  The board unanimously selected Andy Hauer as elector and Jodi Pfarr as alternate for the Downtown West neighborhood, and Kathleen Anderson as elector for the Downtown East neighborhood.  Tom, as Chair, will complete the registration forms and return them to the League of Women Voters by the deadline.

At Carletta’s recommendation, the board unanimously agreed to join the East Downtown Council (EDC), a business and professional association for the Downtown East and Elliot Park neighborhoods.  Annual membership is $150 and covers all board members.  EDC’s monthly luncheon meetings are held on the fourth Thursday of each month unless otherwise specified.  The next meeting is scheduled for Thursday, October 28, 2004, 12:00 p.m. at the Hennepin County Medical Center.  RSVP to Katie Hatt at 612-359-0601 or khatt@elliotpark.org

Tom advised that proposals for the operation and management of the downtown theaters (i.e., Orpheum, Pantages and State) are due to the City by Friday, October 15, 2004 by 4 p.m..  Thereafter the study committee will reconvene to review the proposals and make a recommendation to the City Council which should then make its final decision, according to the RFP deadline, by November 19, 2004.     

  

IX.       Adjournment

Thereafter the meeting was adjourned at 8:25 p.m.

Signed this ________ day of ________________________, 2004.

_______________________________                      _______________________________
Chair                                                                            Secretary