UHT Existing Structures

The site contains a collection of existing structures that include two docks and related river wall features along the river bank, a 110,000 sq. ft. cold storage warehouse, four large concrete storage domes, a grain elevator complex, an extensive conveyor system, a small office building and a variety of other support structures. The bulk of these structures are concentrated on Parcel 2 (see aerial map with identification of structures).

In order to better understand the condition of and potential for these existing structures, the City of Minneapolis contracted with a team of structural and historical consultants to evaluate the structures. The resulting study found that the major structures, while well-worn, are structurally still in fair to good condition. The study provided initial cost estimates for stabilizing them. The study also found that most of the structures retain their historic integrity and noted which changes probably could be made to allow new uses while respecting the Secretary of Interior’s Standard for the Treatment of Historic Properties.

The presence of these structures on a portion of the site does potentially present some limits to redevelopment options. However, if they were formally listed on the National Register and could be rehabilitated for new uses in accordance with the Secretary of Interior’s Standards, the rehabilitation could qualify for federal and state investment tax credits equal to 40% of the qualifying rehabilitation costs, as well as potentially other grant assistance.

In addition, finding appropriate new uses for some or all of the existing structures could provide an immediate and dramatic sense of “identity” for the new redevelopment and perhaps allow design options that probably would not be permitted in entirely new construction. Creative ideas brainstormed to date include:

  • Beer fermentation tanks in the grain elevators, with an adjacent taproom
  • Aquaponics in the warehouse or possibly parking for a major riverfront destination
  • An indoor recreation center and climbing wall in a dome, leading up to a zipline that would follow the existing conveyors
  • Outdoor restaurant seating right next to the River, taking advantage of the presence of the existing river wall
  • A bandshell in half of a dome
  • A themed restaurant, photo studio, planetarium or other use that could take advantage of the large open space in a dome

The City of Minneapolis expects to work closely with the Master Developer during the coordinated planning period to more fully explore the feasibility of any potential reuses of the structures.

In addition to the photos on this page, additional photos and samples of scanned plans may be found here.

Aerial Map of Structure Locations