Historic Preservation Commission Nicollet Island public hearing

The Minneapolis Historic Preservation Commission will hold a public hearing on whether or not to grant the project proposers with a “Certificate of Appropriateness” on August 8 at 5:00 p.m. in the City Hall Council Chambers.

DeLaSalle, a private high school, wants to build a football stadium on public parkland in the middle of a national historic district and regional riverfront park. The Commission’s job is to determine if a football stadium that requires closing a 140-year-old street, shaving off part of a hillside and constructing large retaining walls is appropriate for the St. Anthony Falls National Historic District. Friends of the Mississippi River (FMR) have advocated that such a development would have significant impacts on the scenic and historic character of the island.

FMR and others have been advocating for the consideration of alternative sites, but DeLaSalle won’t budge until the city turns them down. That’s where citizen action comes in. We need people to attend the meeting to give testimony and provide written comments. If you would like more information or wish to get involved, please contact Michael Guest at 651-222-2193 x22 or mguest@fmr.org.

Download a letter FMR sent to the Minneapolis Park Board Commissioners earlier this year. PDF (76 Kb)

1 thought on “Historic Preservation Commission Nicollet Island public hearing

  1. Liz Wielinski Post author

    The Minneapolis Historic Preservation Commission voted to deny the application by DeLaSalle for a Certificate of Appropriateness for their football stadium project. The testimony from both sides was extensive and last nearly 4 hours. The most interesting testimony came from Judith Martin regarding DeLaSalle’s past acquisitions of land for football. According to old newspapers and various overhead photos throughout the history of the island, DeLaSalle has closed 2 alleys and one other street over the years to create fields which they then expanded the buildings onto thus needing more land for fields ( much like the recent gymnasium addition ). This pattern has been ongoing since 1942 when during WWII they demolished 300 units of affordable housing to expand the campus. No doubt easy to do since the men and boys were probably overseas at the time. Probably not a unit that DeLaSalle teaches in the “History of the Island” class they touted as teaching to all incoming students to the school. Then again as the old adage goes the “History is Written by the Victors”.

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