Urban Fold

Proposed Mixed Use Development Rises Too High

A $1.5 billion dollar mixed use development proposed along the banks of the Mississippi River in St. Paul, Minnesota, has been voted down by the city's planning commission after it refused to approve a zoning variance for 30 story condos.

Despite the setback, the project's developer is confident in his proposal's viability, seeing it as the key to a St. Paul renaissance. Due to the denial of the zoning variance, many in the city are hoping the developer will compromise and lower his building heights. And though many in St. Paul believe the mixed use development will be an economic boost for the city, others cite some possible negative effects.

"Skeptics - Mayor Chris Coleman among them - have faulted the mega-proposal on several fronts, saying it threatens to upset a delicate development balance that planners and neighbors have worked hard to strike."

"The project has also been criticized for potentially increasing traffic, wiping out scenic views and ignoring neighborhood concerns."

Full Story: Planning Commission rejects Bridges development

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Just for the record, the

Just for the record, the application was to rezone the site to permit the development, not for variances for the project. The Planning Commission's recommendation to deny the rezoning is being forwarded to the Saint Paul City Council, who will make the decision on the rezoning (subject to Mayoral approval or veto).

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