Support Eight on 44th appeal in Linden Hills

Not injurious.

Update (11/8): the developer of the project is appealing the decision to allow a 3 story building: the developer had asked for a conditonal use permit for 4 stories, as this is what is economically viable. Skip below to the appeal/comment section to find out how to help.

Over the past year or so, a battle has been waged over a house at one of these properties: a home once owned by author Brenda Ueland. The issue has blown so far out of proportion that it’s gotten the following coverage:

The legislative history on it is pretty simple though:

The new proposal is a cluster development, containing two properties, 9 units in total, 8 are condos in a 4 story building, and 1 unit is an existing single-family home. Off-street parking will be provided in form of a small surface lot in the back.

Zoning of the area

The area is already zoned R4, but the property is a cluster development and needs a conditional use permit (CUP) for this. It also needs a CUP to increase the height, because the plats exist within the Shoreland Overlay District, which has a height limit of 2.5 stories, or 35 feet — whichever is less. The developer is asking for 4 stories, at 53’10”. The project also needs a variance to allow development on or within 40 feet of the top of a steep slope.

Submitting a Public Comment on the Appeal

To submit a letter of support, send an email to the Zoning and Planning Commission members and the staff planner on the project, preferably before Thursday, at 9:30AM so they have a chance to read. Click here to send an email with subject lines & contacts filled out.

Subject line: Support the appeal of Eight on 44th, Linden Hills

Some possible talking points

  • I support the appeal.
  • I support this development because it will be a great addition to a neighborhood, allowing more people to live close to nature and within sight of our lakes.
  • The fact that the land is in the middle of an area zoned R4 should be enough to approve this project. The proposed height will be less than the maximum allowed for R4.
  • This project is less than the maximum density recommended by the Linden Hills Small Area Plan for areas listed as “medium density” . This suggests that this is a project of the type that the neighborhood has agreed to.
  • This is an extremely small drop in the bucket of the amount of housing the city as a whole needs. Some parts of town have seen way more, and some have seen way less: Linden Hills should take its fair share of new housing.
  • The idea of sharing the lakes with more neighbors seems like a fit with our city’s goals of equity. Highest valued land provides geographical restrictions by only allowing in the few people who can afford to live in high cost and high demand areas. Part of changing this requires allowing small- and mid-sized developments like these to replace single family homes. We need more of this.

Contacts

Staff Planner 
Mei-Ling Smith — Mei-Ling.Smith@minneapolismn.gov

Ward 13 council member 
Linea Palmisano — Linea.Palmisano@minneapolismn.gov — (612) 673–2213

Z&P Chair 
Lisa Bender — Lisa.Bender@minneapolismn.gov — (612) 673–2210
Z&P Vice-chair 
Andrew Johnson — Andrew.Johnson@minneapolismn.gov — (612) 673–2212

Committee members:
Ward 1: Kevin Reich — Kevin.Reich@minneapolismn.gov — (612) 673–2201
Ward 6: Abdi Warsame — Abdi.Warsame@minneapolismn.gov — (612) 673–2206
Ward 7: Lisa Goodman — Lisa.Goodman@minneapolismn.gov — (612) 673–2207

(old) Submitting a Public Comment

To submit a letter of support, send an email to the Planning Commission members, preferably before Monday, October 16th at 4:30PM so they have a chance to read.

Subject line: Public Comment for Eight on 44th, Linden Hills

Some possible talking points:

  • I support this development because it seems like a great addition to a neighborhood, allowing more people to live close to nature and within sight of our lakes.
  • The fact that the land is already zoned R4 should be enough to approve this project.
  • I support the conditional use permits for cluster developments and additional height in shoreland overlays.
  • There aren’t many condos getting built in Minneapolis, and we need more.
  • Very little new development is ever proposed in southwest Minneapolis, while other neighborhoods are seeing a lot. Linden Hills too should take on its fair share.
  • The idea of sharing the lakes with more neighbors seems like a fit with our city’s goals of equity. Highest valued land provides geographical restrictions by only allowing in the few people who can afford to live in high cost and high demand areas. Part of changing this requires allowing small- and mid-sized developments like these to replace single family homes. We need more of this.
  • The Linden Hills Small Area Plan seems to call for low to medium density adjacent to commercial nodes, such as the one at 44th and Upton, further defining low density as 7–20 dwelling units per acre. This development is calling for 8 units in .64 acres, and seems to be in line with the Linden Hills SAP; in fact it is on the low end of ‘low density’ as defined in the SAP.

Contacts:

Mei-Ling Smith, Senior City Planner,<mei-ling.smith@minneapolismn.gov>
Linea Palmisano, Ward 13 council member <linea.palmisano@minneapolismn.gov>

Planning Commission

The planning commission has other members, but these are the ones who are city staff and can be reached via public email. Include them if you like, but they’ll also see emails sent to Mei-Ling Smith above.

Lisa Bender <lisa.bender@minneapolismn.gov>
Nick Magrino <nick.magrino@minneapolismn.gov>

NB: some emails didn’t work — quickly tracking down the correct ones, watch this space.

Extra info

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