MINNEAPOLIS -- The Minneapolis City Council is on board with Ryan Companies' $400 million Downtown East Redevelopment plan.
The council unanimously approved the framework of the project allowing negotiations to continue, and perhaps, accelerate.
"At this time, (they) voted on a concept so people could say, generally, 'Is this something that we should continue negotiating on?' And thankfully the council said, 'Yes,'" Mayor RT Rybak told reporters.
"I think this is a big step," Council Member Cam Gordon said.
He says the goal of the council is to maximize the public good by guiding a two-block park through the process. The Ryan plan also calls for two office towers housing 5 to 6,000 workers, a 1,328 stall parking structure, more than 300 residential housing units and 40,000 square feet of retail.
Gordon says the city's kicking in $65 million towards the parking structure and he notes that there is still a lot that needs to be discussed in regards to the park. He knows he wants the park itself to be more than just green space.
"Not just a space that would be there for eight games and would get littered up and then be left empty as something to look at or maybe walk across on your lunch break," he explained.
Michele Kelm-Helgen, head of the Minnesota Sports Facilities Authority, says the Ryan proposal exceeds any expectations she had after stadium legislation passed at the State Capitol. She's more than excited the plan is progressing.
"It's just amazing. I think it really justifies (everything). A lot of people had questions as to whether this was going to be the appropriate site for a new stadium," she told KARE 11.
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