Nicollet Mall to be renamed and rebuilt as the new Nicollet Mile

MINNEAPOLIS - The rebuild of Nicollet Mall comes with a new name, "New Nicollet Mile," and that's just the start. It's a 50 million dollar project and anybody in the IDS's Crystal Court got a sneak peek Wednesday.

"We are going to revamp, revitalize, reinvent what Nicollet Avenue presently is," said Minneapolis City Councilmember Jacob Frey.

At present, the mile long stretch is, put simply, a lot of stuff.

"What you see on Nicollet today over the accumulation of time is clutter," smiled James Corner, James Corner Field Operations.

Corner is the principal designer of the Nicollet Mile and the one thing that's going to be added he said, are trees, lots of them.

"We have a beautiful planting palette where it will be very distinctive in the spring, beautiful in the summer, really colorful in the fall and also have a strong winter presence," explained Corner.

Additionally, benches will be modernized, sidewalls will be replaced with precast concrete blocks, which are more robust and can handle the weather and there are plans to have Skyways accessible to the street.

Finally, the light fixtures, which in their current state can only describe as an 80s globe-like-bulb-like-light fixture, they'll go from retro to modern.

"A sort of slender elegant steel masts that will go quite high, then we can attach different fixtures to light the roadway to light the sidewalk," said Corner.

The intention is to spotlight Nicollet Mile as a 21st century stretch of road.


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