Breaking News
More () »

New food, beverage & residential space coming to vacant block in downtown Minneapolis

A block that once held the old Wells Fargo Operations Center building has been given the green light to become the city's next big food and beverage destination.

MINNEAPOLIS — At the corner of Second Avenue South and South Third Street in downtown Minneapolis, sits a city block full of potential. 

"A lot of people living there — possibly some people working there — you know, a lot of restaurants," said Steve Cramer, president and CEO of the Downtown Council

A block that once held the old Wells Fargo Operations Center building, which is now vacant, has officially been given the green light to become the city's next big food and beverage destination in a mixed-use setup. 

"Creating an experiential situation downtown, something that people are going to want to come to and be part of and experience," said Cramer. 

It's being called the Harmonia Development project under the ownership of Sherman Associates, which purchased the property last August. 

“The Harmonia project will create a dynamic and interactive hub for people of all incomes to experience the vibrant center of downtown Minneapolis,” said Chris Sherman, president of Sherman Associates.

The $400 million redevelopment project would make way for a multiple-story residential apartment building with retail space and a flagship restaurant led by David Fhima, owner of Fhima's Minneapolis

"You're going to find this to be a project that is extremely diversified, not only by the people that we are partnering with, but by the food and the cultures — it's going to represent the Twin Cities," said Fhima. 

It's all part of a push to get people back to downtown Minneapolis. 

"When there is no business, it's quiet," said Fhima. 

At a time when Cramer says many businesses are on the outs, brought on by the setbacks of a pandemic. 

"These folks wouldn't be investing the kind of money that a project like Harmonia will take unless they had confidence that the demand for those — that product, housing and other things — that they'll put there, is there," explained Cramer. 

A demand that Cramer says is evident.  

"We have more people coming back to the office; we have a lot more people coming back to events over the last year, and we think that trend is going to continue in 2023," said Cramer. 

"I happen to think that five, 10 years from now, when you look back at this time, there's a lot of people who are going to regret that they didn't invest into downtown, it'll be way too expensive for them then."

The name Harmonia pays tribute to Harmonia Hall, a Victorian Gothic building that stood on a portion of the site from 1884 to 1962. Beyond the history, it signifies the harmony the development will bring to Minneapolis with its variety of uses, serving all income levels and connection of neighborhoods.

Construction on the Harmonia development is set to begin next year.

Watch more local news:

Watch the latest local news from the Twin Cities in our YouTube playlist:


Before You Leave, Check This Out