• Prospect Park Minneapolis Slideshow

    Prospect Park – Minneapolis, Minnesota

neighborhood - historic district Application PROCESS

Vision from NRP: To preserve the century-old character of the neighborhood featuring architecturally significant houses and winding streets and green spaces.

Over the period, 1995 - 2015 (20 years), several neighborhood residents, led by Joe Ring and his wife Susan Thrash, succeeded in achieving historic district status for most of Prospect Park to protect it from the pressures of modern development.

Historic District Project

Prospect Park National Register of Historic Places (NRHP) Residential Historic District Registration 2014 [2.4MB PDF]

August 2014 (8 documents):

Reverse Chronology of events leading to Neighborhood Historic Designation

Presentation by Aaron Hanauer of Minneapolis CPED to PPERRIA, Feb. 24, 2010 [780KB PDF].

Presentation by PPERRIA Pres. Dick Poppele on Feb. 24, 2010 [32K PDF].

Current draft of PPERRIA Design Guidelines task group, chaired by Bob Roscoe, Feb 1 [84KB PDF] The purpose of this posting is to provide an opportunity for residents to comment and provide feedback to the task group as they work toward a more final version.

Report: Prospect Park, Minneapolis: A Historical Survey 2001

Prospect Park Historical Surveys by Date of Construction 2007

How do neighborhoods get designated as historical areas in Minneapolis?

Questions and Answers (Q&A) from the July 19, 2007 Meeting


Prospect Park, Minneapolis: A Historical Survey Prepared by Marjorie Pearson, Ph.D., Senior HistorianHess, Roise and Company, October 2001, 38 pages.

Download the PDF of the report. [3.6MB]


1 Prospect Park, Minneapolis: An Historical Survey October 2001
5 Preliminary Research
5 Field Survey
5 General and In-depth Research
5 Preparation of Inventory Materials and Survey Report
7 Early Development
10 Institutions, Organizations, and Infrastructure
12 Twentieth-Century Development to World War II
15 The People and Organizations of Prospect Park
17 Architectural Styles and Construction Techniques in Prospect Park
20 Construction Techniques
21 Selected Architects of Prospect Park
22 Edwin Roy Ludwig
22 Menno S. Detweiler
25 The Landscape of Prospect Park
27 Conclusion
28 Designation of Individual Properties and National Register Listings to Date
28 Proposed National Register and Local Historic District
30 Proposed Individual National Register Listings and Local Designations
34 Other Sources/Bibliography

Prospect Park Survey by Date of Construction

Download the PDF of the Report Index [112KB]

NOTE: Individual Property Surveys by first letter of street name:

I thought it might be helpful if I shared a memo I prepared for a PPERRIA community meeting I attended in July. - 2nd Ward Councilmember Cam Gordon, 2007-09-17.

How do neighborhoods get designated as historical areas in Minneapolis?

The City Council, by a majority vote, makes the decision to create all landmarks or historic districts in Minneapolis. The Historic Preservation and Planning Commission also take up the decision, prior to consideration by the City Council. Those decisions are based on detailed staff analysis and recommendations. The City also looks for strong community support that is representative of a majority of property owners and stakeholders in the area, although this is not required by ordinance. Establishment of a historic district is complicated, because while it has major economic benefits for an area, it is often perceived as something negative as it does take away some ? though certainly not all ? individual property rights. Without strong consensus and understanding, such designations can lead to very time-consuming legal challenges. It is recommended that a local designation study should proceed concurrently with an intensive community education/participation effort.

As part of this process the CPED-Planning preservation team typically conducts a local designation study. These take some time and most often involve consultant services. They are somewhat easier to do if the neighborhood is national register eligible or has national register status. But such status also adds other questions that need to be considered as well since local designations have a greater “bite” in terms of the regulatory power they establish.

It is not in CPED-Planning’s adopted 2007 work plan to do a designation study this year. It could be a consideration for 2008. However, I have learned that there are more than twenty such districts in the city that have been identified as possibly having local designation status. As part of the update to the Comprehensive Plan the City is hoping to prioritize those areas.

City planning department staff is aware of the efforts in Prospect Park and has assured me that they will be keeping that in mind as they balance this with other requests as well as current staffing levels/budget resources. I think that they also recognize that redevelopment in SEMI and planning/development work related to U of M and Central Corridor also suggest that Prospect Park should be higher up on our list.

The official process as outlined in the City Code of Ordinances is included below.


599.200. Purpose.

This article is established to promote the preservation of historic resources by providing the commission with authority to recommend the designation of landmarks and historic districts and to adopt design guidelines for designated properties. (2001-Or-029, § 1, 3-2-01)

599.210. Designation criteria.

The following criteria shall be considered in determining whether a property is worthy of designation as a landmark or historic district because of its historical, cultural, architectural, archaeological or engineering significance:

(1) The property is associated with significant events or with periods that exemplify broad patterns of cultural, political, economic or social history.

(2) The property is associated with the lives of significant persons or groups.

(3) The property contains or is associated with distinctive elements of city identity.

(4) The property embodies the distinctive characteristics of an architectural or engineering type or style, or method of construction.

(5) The property exemplifies a landscape design or development pattern distinguished by innovation, rarity, uniqueness or quality of design or detail.

(6) The property exemplifies works of master builders, engineers, designers, artists, craftsmen or architects.

(7) The property has yielded, or may be likely to yield, information important in prehistory or history. (2001-Or-029, § 1, 3-2-01)

599.220. Nomination of property. Nomination of a property to be considered for designation as a landmark or historic district shall be submitted to the planning director on a nomination application form approved by the planning director and shall be accompanied by all required supporting information. A nomination may be made by any of the following:

(1) A member of the heritage preservation commission.

(2) A member of the city council.

(3) The mayor.

(4) The planning director.

(5) Any person with a legal or equitable interest in the subject property. (2001-Or-029, § 1, 3-2-01)

599.230. Commission decision on nomination. The commission shall review all complete nomination applications. If the commission determines that a nominated property appears to meet at least one of the criteria for designation contained in section 599.210, the commission may direct the planning director to commence a designation study of the property. (2001-Or-029, § 1, 3-2-01)

599.240. Interim protection.

(a) Purpose. Interim protection is established to protect a nominated property from destruction or inappropriate alteration during the designation process.

(b) Effective date. Interim protection shall be in effect from the date of the commission's decision to commence a designation study of a nominated property until the city council makes a decision regarding the designation of the property, or for twelve (12) months, whichever comes first. Interim protection may be extended for such additional periods as the commission may deem appropriate and necessary to protect the designation process, not exceeding a total additional period of eighteen (18) months. The commission shall hold a public hearing on a proposed extension of interim protection as provided in section 599.170.

(c) Scope of restrictions. During the interim protection period, no alteration or minor alteration of a nominated property shall be allowed except where authorized by a certificate of appropriateness or a certificate of no change, as provided in this chapter. (2001- Or-029, § 1, 3-2-01)

599.250. State historic preservation office review.

The planning director shall submit all proposed designations to the state historic preservation officer for review and comment within sixty (60) days. (2001-Or-029, § 1, 3-2-01)

599.260. City planning commission review.

The planning director shall submit all proposed designations to the city planning commission for review and comment on the proposal within thirty (30) days. In its review, the city planning commission shall consider but not be limited to the following factors:

(1) The relationship of the proposed designation to the city's comprehensive plan.

(2) The effect of the proposed designation on the surrounding area.

(3) The consistency of the proposed designation with applicable development plans or development objectives adopted by the city council. (2001-Or-029, § 1, 3-2-01)

599.270. Designation hearing.

Following completion of the designation study the commission shall hold a public hearing to consider the proposed designation, as provided in section 599.170. Any person having a legal or equitable interest in a nominated property shall be allowed reasonable opportunity to give testimony or present evidence concerning the proposed designation. (2001-Or-029, § 1, 3-2-01)

599.280. Commission recommendation.

Following the public hearing, the commission shall make findings with respect to the proposed designation and shall submit the same together with its recommendation to the zoning and planning committee of the city council. In making its findings and recommendation, the commission shall consider the designation criteria contained in section 599.210, the information contained in the designation study, the state historic preservation officer's comments, the city planning commission's comments, the planning director's report and all testimony and evidence received at the public hearing relating to the designation. (2001-Or-029, § 1, 3-2-01)

599.290. City council decision.

The city council shall make the final decision on all designations. (2001-Or-029, § 1, 3-2-01)

599.300. Design guidelines.

The commission shall adopt design guidelines for landmarks and historic districts. Prior to adoption, the planning director shall submit all proposed design guidelines to the state historic preservation officer for review and comment within sixty (60) days. (2001-Or-029, § 1, 3-2-01)

Questions and Answers (Q&A) from the July 19, 2007 Meeting

Download the PDF of the Q&A [36KB]


June 25, 2007

Dear Neighbor,

We want you to b informed of a very important neighborhood meeting in mid-July. As many of you undoubtedly know, Prospect Park has for several years been involved in the process of seeking historical designation for the neighborhood. We are now at the point at which our proposal will be submitted for federal and, subsequently, local approval. As one would expect this process involves a number of steps, one of which is community input to ensure that those affected support the designation."

The area designated is bordered on the south by Interstate 94, on the east by Emerald Ave., and on the wet by Williams Ave. S.E., and on the north, the boundary roughly parallels University Avenue including the Schneider Drug and old Tower Grocery buildings, then following a line that includes residential properties and excludes commercial properties. Historic designation would give us greater control over the nature of residential development in our neighborhood. It would also require that we develop specific guidelines to outline and define the exact nature of the control we wish to exercise. As such, this could have a potential impact on every residential property owner in Prospect Park and makes our participation in the process extremely important. All property owners will be receiving a packet of information in early September explaining the process. There is also an excellent National Park Service website on historic designation. The meeting is to address concerns and answer questions at a community level. We urge you to attend.

PPERRIA Livibility Committee

Thursday July 19, 2007
7:00 to 9:00 p.m.
St. Frances Cabrini Catholic Church
1500 Franklin Ave. S.E.

Agenda For Historic Designation Meeting July 19, 2007

1) Proposal for Prospect Park to be placed on the National Register Of Historic Places
(Joe Ring-5)

2) What action is before our community (Joe Ring-5)

* National Register Listing
* Local Designation

3) What benefits has Prospect Park East River Road received since National Designation
process began. (Joe Ring-15)
* Central Corridor
* Consulting Party Status
* Clarence and Sidney Place
* Pratt School Building
* 29 Street Station Plan
* Station 19

4) Historic District Study (Marjorie Pearson -30)

* What are the borders of the proposed district
* Criteria national and local
* For National Designation what is the process
* What are the benefits for National Designation
* What are the property owners obligations for National Designation

5) Local Designation (Robert Roscoe -20)

* When can Local Designation take place
* Design review and levels of review for Local Designation
* Positives for Local Designation
* Negatives for Local Designation

6) Local Designation (Cam Gordon -10)

7) Questions and answers (Dick Poppele-30)