Central Avenue Small Area Plan

Plan Background

The Central Avenue Small Area Plan articulates a vision that will improve the relationship between the Avenue and surrounding neighborhoods. The Plan encourages robust growth by creating a lively active pedestrian-oriented street that supports existing entrepreneurs and attracts new investments while helping to stabilize surrounding neighborhoods by clearly defining the limits and location of commercial development. After an extensive public process over more than a year, the Central Avenue Small Area Plan was approved by the Planning Commission on May 12, 2008 and by the City Council on June 20, 2008.

Central Avenue Small Area Plan

Future Land Use and Built Form

The Minneapolis 2040 future land use map is largely consistent with the recommendations from the Central Avenue Small Area Plan. Commercial uses are encouraged along the corridors, with a concentration of activity at the intersection of Central Avenue and Lowry Avenue. The ‘Destination Mixed Use’ category is applied to that intersection, which requires commercial retail frontage in mixed use buildings. Where Minneapolis 2040 diverges from the Small Area Plan a bit is in expanding the areas along Central Avenue that allow for and encourage commercial uses as of right. This is done to expand access to commercial goods and services for residents, employees, and visitors to the area. At the southern end of the study area the concept of retaining and expanding on the employment opportunities that are offered there is retained through the use of the ‘Production Mixed Use’ category – which signals support for the ongoing eclectic nature of uses in the area.

The Minneapolis 2040 built form map attempts to reflect the recommendations from the small area plan in a way that is consistent with adopted plan goals and also includes further intensification throughout the study area to match the built form conventions in the new plan. Consistent with the way high frequency transit corridors are treated throughout the city, ‘Corridor 6’ is applied to properties fronting Central Avenue with the ‘Interior 2’ category applied on properties not fronting on corridors. Nearer the Central and 29th Avenue, Central and Lowry, and Central and 18th Avenue intersections, the built form category transitions up to the ‘Transit 10’ district to reflect the small area plan’s recognition of these being focal points of activity along the corridor. In much of the area guided ‘Production Mixed Use’ future land use, properties carry the ‘Corridor 6’ designation. A minimum building height of 2 stories is required in the ‘Corridor 6’ and ‘Transit 10’ categories. Additional height throughout the study area will be considered through the conditional use permit process.

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