What is happening in your community?

 

(Note: this project page will soon be updated to include topics like the mountain bike trail at Lone Lake, the Shady Oak Crossing project, the Excelsior Boulevard Trail Project and the Opus Redevelopment Project. 

This page is set up to help inform the residents of projects in the City of Minnetonka, or projects that may be coming up in the near future. Any comments or opinions on this page reflect what I am hearing from the community or are my own - and should not be considered to be the opinion of city staff or the City Council. 

 

As a current City Planning Commissioner, I will objectively be providing facts, not opinions for any project that are in conceptual stage or have not yet been approved or denied by the Planning Commission or the City Council. I welcome your feedback by calling or email – but will stay opinion neutral until after the public and developer have had a chance to be heard. I do this so others that may have a difference of opinion will not feel dejected throughout the process of review. Opinions can be submited by clicking this link -  Brian@KIRKcampaign.com  

 

A complete list of projects in Minnetonka can be found by visiting eminnetonka.com or by clicking on this project button.

Projects worth knowing about:

iFly Ridgedale - 12415 Wayzata Boulevard

iFLY plans to build a new indoor skydiving facility on the Ridgedale Center Ring Road near the Southeast corner of I-394 and Plymouth Road. The new building will be approximately 5,000 square feet and serve over 150,000 customers annually, many of whom will travel from well outside the community to experience indoor skydiving at iFLY. Once operational, iFLY will employ and estimated 26 people (18 Full-Time, 8 Part-Time).

On October 12th, the Planning Commission reviewed this project. There were some concerns about the overall height of the building and the size of the signage shown in the images (see below). Generally the project was well received by Planning Commissioner. 

 

Shady Oak Road Redevelopment - 4312 Shady Oak Rd

On Sept. 7th, the Planning Commission approved this project. That was followed by the City Council meeting on Sept. 25th, and the project was approved as a 49 unit affordable housing apartment complex. I voted against this project not because I am against affordable housing but because I felt it was flawed in several ways and should be done right to set a model of balancing affordable housing while preserving the neighborhood character of the city.

This project was complicated because of the small site for this size of the development, the limited area available to access the site, and a utility easement that runs north to south along the west side of the property.  This high density development is immediately adjacent to single family homes with no available space for adequate buffer. It also required the access drive be located on Oak Drive Lane, which is a neighborhood road, and is not a preferable access point. 

I support the need for affordable housing, but needed to vote "no" because of the impact the size and location of the development would have on the character of the neighborhood.  If we have even a few failed attempts at providing this type of housing stock, the impact for future affordable housing developments will be catastrophic.

As a City Council member, I will have the fortitude to do what is right – not what is popular – and to find the balance between individual rights and what is better for the community.