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 Minneapolis 2040 Glossary Terms

The following list of glossary terms is intended to provide clarity regarding the language used in this plan. Many of the terms used are subject to interpretation. This glossary identifies commonly held definitions, terms previously defined by the citywide enterprise, or professional standards utilized during the authorship of the document. This is not an exhaustive list nor is it intended to be interpreted as regulation.


Affordable housing and housing affordability
Affordable Housing is rental housing with rent and income restrictions (typically 60% of Area Median Income or below) or housing for homeownership with income restrictions (typically less than 80 percent of Area Median Income) as governed by local, state and federal housing assistance programs.

Housing Affordability is access to homeownership or rental options based on housing price relative to household income. 

AMI - Area Median Income
The Area Median Income (AMI) is the midpoint of a region’s income distribution – half of families in a region earn more than the median and half earn less than the median. For housing policy, income thresholds set relative to the area median income—such as 50% of the area median income—identify households eligible to live in income-restricted housing units and the affordability of housing units to low-income households.

"Arts" means architecture and environmental arts, creative writing, dance, film/video, music, theatre and visual arts. [i]

[i] City of Minneapolis code of ordinances


Built Environment
The Built Environment consists of buildings, parks, roads, infrastructure, and other physical parts that set the stage for human activity within a city.  Often defined as, "the human-made space in which people live, work, and recreate on a day-to-day basis.”


Capital infrastructure
Streets, sidewalks, bridges, traffic control & street lighting, bikeway & pedestrian walkways, sewers & water infrastructure, and more.

Cooperative (Co-op)
An association of persons united voluntarily to meet their common economic, social, and cultural needs and aspirations through a jointly-owned and democratically-controlled enterprise.

Creative Placemaking
Creative placemaking leverages the power of the arts, culture and creativity; while planning, designing and organizing public spaces (see placemaking).

Creative City Road Map
City of Minneapolis’ planning process to think more strategically about how its arts and creative assets can best contribute to the local and regional economy and improve Minneapolis’ quality of life.

Creative Economy
The creative economy is a subset of the larger service economy. The creative work that adds value to research, education, governance, technological, innovative and intellectual enterprises is viewed by economists and urban scholars as an important part of the overall economy.

Creative Sector
The creative economy includes non-creative industries, business and corporations that employ creative workers in marketing, design, and public relations roles, as well as artists and other creative workers who perform, produce and sell their work as sole proprietors and business owners with employees. Creative workers can also be found in the nonprofit sector founding, managing and working in arts and cultural organizations. This collective of creative workers and businesses is sometimes referred to as the creative sector.

Creative Workers
The City of Minneapolis defines 40 different federal bureau of labor statistics job codes as creative workers in the Minneapolis Creative Vitality Index, which reports on statistics related the city’s creative economy. The field is broad and those who work in the creative sector are embedded in a host of other industries. It includes the fields of architecture, communication, design, marketing and public relations; creative professions such musical instrument repairers, gallery owners, radio network producers, and video production technicians; as well as artistic genres, such as literature, music, dance, theater and visual arts.

Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design (CPTED)
Crime Prevention through Environmental Design (CPTED) is defined as a multi-disciplinary approach to deterring criminal behavior through environmental design. CPTED strategies rely upon the ability to influence offender decisions that precede criminal acts by affecting the built, social and administrative environment.[i]

Cultural Asset Mapping

 “It identifies a community’s strengths and resources through the process of inventorying tangible and intangible cultural assets. Tangible assets include arts and natural heritage resources on public and private land — including urban design and public art, cultural facilities, cultural industries, artist networks, cultural festivals and events, cultural occupations, and cultural organizations. Intangible assets include stories and traditions that contribute to defining a community’s unique identity and sense of place.” --

Cultural Landscape
The "combined works of nature and of man". “…illustrative of the evolution of human society and settlement over time, under the influence of the physical constraints and/or opportunities presented by their natural environment and of successive social, economic and cultural forces, both external and internal.” — UNESCO World Heritage Convention

Curbside Management
Strategies support reliable transit and safer streets through the creation of curbside reliable bus lanes, safe bikeways, freight loading, and public space.



A move by the occupant of a dwelling unit or commercial unit caused by a change in occupancy conditions which makes such unit unsuitable or unavailable for occupancy. This change may be due to major rehabilitation, demolition, or an unreasonable increase in occupancy costs. Destruction of the dwelling unit by fire or a natural disaster not within the control of the property owner does not constitute displacement. Business tenants that move at the end of a lease term are not considered displaced. [i]

[i] Minneapolis Relocation Policy


Fair and just opportunities and outcomes for all people.[i]

[i] City of Minneapolis Code of Ordinances


Green Zones
Low-income communities, indigenous communities, and communities of color in Minneapolis experience unequal health, wealth, employment, and education outcomes, and also are overburdened by environmental conditions such as traffic and stationary pollution sources, brownfield sites, blight, and substandard housing.

The idea for developing a Minneapolis Green Zones initiative came from the Minneapolis Climate Action Plan Environmental Justice Working Group. A Green Zone is a place-based policy initiative aimed at improving health and supporting economic development using environmentally conscious efforts in communities that face the cumulative effects of environmental pollution, as well as social, political, and economic vulnerability.


Housing Choice
Refers to the ability to find housing that meets a variety of needs in a variety of locations. This includes but is not limited to varied building types, in varied locations, and at varied income levels. For the purpose of this document housing choice does not refer to the housing choice voucher system.

Housing Density
The ratio of a housing units to residential land area.

Housing Diversity
Refers to the range of housing types in a development or neighborhood. A neighborhood with housing diversity has various different dwelling types and sizes, usually achieved by promoting a variety of building forms.


Address disparate impact on communities of color and indigenous people through City of Minneapolis policies, procedures, and practices. Identify opportunities to remove barriers for economic and social progress in our city. Ensuring equity for all protected groups (i.e. gender, age, ability, LGBTQI, etc).

Innovation Districts
An Innovation District is an economic development tool that utilizes partnerships with higher education institutions, businesses, and government to fuel job growth and redevelopment in targeted locations, based on the premise that collaboration and productivity result from proximity and therefore job creation and innovation can be fostered through the intentional clustering of businesses, institutions, ideas, and people. Innovation Districts can be used for the purposes of planning, fundraising, and marketing and potentially for innovative pilot projects and district systems.


Minneapolis Creative Vitality Index (CVI)
The Creative Vitality Index data provides one way of measuring the impact of the creative sector by looking at the region’s share of creative jobs, arts spending, and creative for-profi­t and nonprofi­t organizations.

Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board
Through the Park and Recreation Board, the City provides for parks, parkways, and recreational opportunities for its current and future residents' use. The Board may likewise provide for service for nonresidents.[i]

[i] City of Minneapolis Charter


Ineffective lighting and the placement and appearance of fixtures that results in more light then necessary on a site to meet site lighting minimums and achieve safe lighting outcomes.


Persons traveling on foot or wheelchair users.

Placemaking is an approach to planning, design and organization of public spaces that capitalizes on an area’s assets. The goal is to create quality public spaces with strong character that encourages health and equity. (See creative placemaking)
Public Art defined broadly: 
Public art is publicly accessible original art that enriches the city and evokes meaning. It may include permanent visual art, performances, installations, events and other temporary works. Public art should consider the site, its context and audience. Public art may possess functional as well as aesthetic qualities; it may be integrated into the site or a discrete work. [i] 

Public Art as defined in terms of the City’s Art in Public Places (percent for art) program (eligible for City funding.): 
Public art means physical art assets, such as outdoor sculpture and artwork integrated into physical structures and environments.  

Private Sector
Part of the city economy which is managed and run by private parties. 

Public Realm
Open spaces (public and semi-public) such as streets, sidewalks, bike paths, parks, and plazas where building interface with public/semi-public open space.

Public Sector Organizations
Usually owned and operated by the government with a mission to provide services for its residents.

[i] Official City Policy


Racial Equity
The development of policies, practices and strategic investments to reverse racial disparity trends, eliminate institutional racism, and ensure that outcomes and opportunities for all people are no longer predictable by race.[i]

The capacity of individuals, communities, institutions, businesses, and systems within a city to survive, adapt, and thrive no matter what kinds of chronic stresses and acute shocks they experience.[ii]

[i] City of Minneapolis Code of Ordinances

[ii] City of Minneapolis, Resilient Minneapolis


Transit-Oriented Development
Transit-Oriented Development is walkable development served by frequent transit with a mix of housing, retail, and employment choices designed to allow people to live and work with less or no dependence on a personal car.


Urban Design
Uses innovative practices and incorporates new technology to provide clarity and legibility to the planning, design, and implementation of projects across the City.[i]

[i] City of Minneapolis, Long Range Planning: Urban Design,

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