In a previous post, I began to take a look at the city's proposal for what it would consider redevelopment along Penn Avenue. And while I'm glad to see needed focus placed on a community corridor, I have to question what part of this plan actually constitutes redevelopment. The redevelopment area will include uses of properties for "housing, commercial/retail uses, and shared parking." Clearly some of the properties are entirely appropriate for things like retail or parking, such as the two vacant parcels photographed above. 3215 and 3205 Penn Avenue North, just south of Union Liquors, are prime parcels for commercial/retail and parking expansion.
(And while they're at it, I'd love to see that spirit shop go the way of the dodo. I went in there for the first and last time the other weekend and it was possibly the most distasteful such shop in all of Minneapolis. I find that some liquor stores have dust on the $50 bottles of wine or the higher-end beers. Union's level of wine that's too classy to be purchased on a regular basis starts off in the eight-dollar range. Things go downhill from there.)
At least from the exterior, it's hard to see what the city would do with 3229 Penn Avenue North, the duplex pictured above. A cursory examination of this and many similar properties leads one to believe there is a three-step process in place
- CPED acquires a property
- Presto! Redevelopment.
And now we continue with the rest of the tour...
(No photos taken of 2904 and 2934 Penn Avenue North, two vacant parcels.)
|2958 Queen Avenue North|
|2954 Queen Avenue North|
|2934 Queen Avenue North|
|2607 Penn Avenue North|
|3201 Oliver Avenue North, I think. These vacant lots can all start to look the same after a while.|
|3222 Penn Avenue North|
(No photos taken of vacant lots 2718 and 2720 Penn Avenue North)
|2615 Oliver Avenue North|
|2627 Oliver Avenue North|
|2635 Oliver Avenue North|
|2639 Oliver Avenue North|
A few thoughts about this stretch of a few houses along Oliver: Some, like 2615, would seem like rehab is possible. Others, like 2639, look like they could be too far beyond repair (even if they were owned by someone better than Mahmood Khan). And 2627 Oliver could be one that even if the demo/rehab question could go either way, one might opt for demolition because the house is crammed in on a tiny lot.
|2624 Penn Avenue North, a likely demo candidate.|
|2634 Penn Avenue North|
|2640 Penn Avenue North...these two are on the list because why?|
|2511 Penn Avenue North|
|2520 Penn Avenue North|
|2522 Penn Avenue North|
And now that we've covered the northern stretch from 26th to the Lowry corridor, let's jump to the south end of the project and work our way back to the 26th/Penn/Broadway node.
|1237 Penn Avenue North|
1237 Penn is perhaps the most perplexing addition to the list of desired acquisitions. It's adjacent to a parcel owned by CPED, which has been vacant for...how long? Ten, fifteen years? More? The house is visually appealing, or at least distinctive, and does not appear to be in any serious state of disrepair. So why is it even included here? This one, among others, absolutely requires an explanation from the city about what the plans are.
Or we could just leave it off the list since it looks to be working out just fine.
|1819 Penn Avenue North|
And here we have another property whose inclusion on the list leaves more questions than answers. It's homesteaded and seems to be kept up quite well.
|1900 Penn Avenue North; the business has already relocated and a raze order is issued.|
|1906 Queen sustained enough damage that this little guy might need to go.|
|2200 Golden Valley Road|
|1911 Penn Avenue North|
|1915 Penn Avenue North|
Obviously it makes sense to pick up 2200 GVR, especially if redevelopment of some kind is coming to Penn, and 1900 across the street is being acquired. And the Dream Home with arson damage should come down yesterday. But what's wrong with 1915 Penn? Unless maybe someone's got a "demolish one, get the second half off" coupon that will expire if not used on the next major city initiative.
Here we have 2020, 2101, and 2131 Penn Avenue North, three vacant lots that are virtually indistinguishable.
|2110 Penn Avenue North|
|2221 Penn Avenue North|
|They haven't finished repairs, but kept out the for rent sign, just in case.|
|2315 Penn Avenue North|
|2327 Penn Avenue North|
|2339-41 Penn Avenue North|
|2335 Penn Avenue North|
"Hey Bob, what are you doing today?"
"Got a backhoe of doom, gonna tear down a few Reitman properties."
"What about that nice one in the middle?"
"Well, I got the bulldozer today and a full tank of gas. Sure be a damned shame if I didn't take full advantage of that, ya know?"
"Yep, wanna tear 'er down too?"
"You know it."
The sooner the Reitman variable gets removed from the redevelopment scene, the better, but I'm still not sure this one needs to come down.
|2306 Penn Avenue North|
2306 has features that, in my opinion, would set the bar for demolition very high indeed. Hennepin County owns it though, so let's hope they do the right thing.
No picture of 2214 Penn, vacant land, taken.
|2202 Penn Avenue North|