PRKCP Neighborhood Parks Capital Infrastructure


Project Details:

Project Start Date: Varies

Ongoing Program: Y

Submitting Department: Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board

Contact Person: Adam Arvidson

Level of Need: High

Estimated Project Completion Date: Varies

Department Priority: 1

Contact Phone Number: 612-230-6470

Website: www.minneapolisparks.org


Project Location:

Address: Multiple

City Sector: Multiple

Affected Neighborhoods: Multiple

Affected Wards: Multiple



Project Description:

This project includes a variety of major capital improvements in a variety of parks, which are primarily requested under the 20-Year Neighborhood Parks Plan (NPP20), a long term funding agreement between the City of Minneapolis and the Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board. Under the NPP20 agreement, the City of Minneapolis has sole discretion on how to fund the program. Because it is likely that Net Debt Bonds will be that funding source in the near future, these major new or increased-budget projects are being requested through the CLIC process. Under this and all Park Board project requests, "Net Debt Bonds" is used interchangeably with the MPRB source "NPP20" as defined in the MPRB CIP.


MPRB has developed an equity metric for selection of parks that would receive new or enhanced funding under NPP20. In order to honor already planned projects, MPRB's 2020-2025 CIP includes projects already in the CIP, as well as new projects selected through the equity criteria. Parks in which a playground, wading pool, or athletic field is the ONLY planned improvement are requested under PRK02, PRK03, and PRK04, respectively. Most of these improvements were already in the CIP and have therefore been retained for funding. More comprehensive park improvement projects with a variety of activities are included in PRKCP. Additionally, a series of targeted rehabilitation types are requested under PRKRP. Previously, CLIC expressed concerns that some projects included in PRKCP were too large to be subsumed into such a large funding request. The stated concern was that larger projects should be discussed and reviewed by CLIC individually, rather than in concert with the overall PRKCP funding request. To address this concern, MPRB has extracted from PRKCP the improvements in any park where more than $1,100,000 is being requested. These projects now have their own project numbers.


The exact facilities to be implemented at each park are based on service area master plans, which create visions for the recreational future of every neighborhood park in the city. The South, Downtown, North, and Northeast/Southeast (East of the River) master plans are complete, and Southwest has achieved a Community Advisory Committee recommendation and is currently in the midst of a 45+ day public comment period. Once a master plan is complete and a funding allocation is made, MPRB begins a participatory community process by which users and residents can help prioritize what is built in the park. A requested allocation for a particular park will not generally complete that park’s master plan, and should be considered a phase one implementation. The community process considers which of those elements included in the adopted master plan should be built right away. The scoping process also considers phasing logistics and feasibility, while ensuring that elements of the park are not decommissioned for long periods of time awaiting phase two. This scoping process is an important way to ensure continued community decision-making in park projects. It does mean, however, that requests under PRKCP are not specifically defined as to exactly what will be constructed. Requested funding would not move from one park to another, but it could be sued for a variety of recreational improvements, based on community input.


PRKCP also includes projects that use the MPRB Capital Levy.



Purpose and Justification:

This project fulfills the NPP20 agreement, which recognizes existing shortfalls in rehabilitation and capital improvement across the Minneapolis park system. Many park assets are near or beyond their useful life, and many parks have an asset mix that does not exactly meet the needs of the community as a whole. This project and its many and varied park improvements will improve safety and accessibility, upgrade worn and outdated park assets, and transform parks to better meet the needs of today's population.


The purpose and justification of each individual park improvement is based on two factors: the equity metric and the park master plan. These two factors work together to ensure that those parks with the greatest need are addressed first, and that the improvements being made are in line with community desires. The equity metric uses empirical data to establish an "equity ranking" for each park. The data look at both the community characteristics around the park and the assets in the park (including historic investment in the park). Rankings of specific projects included in this request are shown below under “Additional Information.” Once a park has been identified for funding, the approved master plan determines the general amount of funding.


This project will allow MPRB to more equitably meet the needs of the community as a whole, by focusing early attention on those parks where there is the most need, but also by implementing improvements the community wants.


Project Visuals and Map:

Example of a park master plan that will guide implementation of improvements (Hall Park)

Project Cost Breakdown

Department Funding Request

Partnerships


Have Grants for this Project been secured?

No grant funds are associated with this project


Describe status and timing details of secured or applied for grants or other non-City funding sources:

Not applicable


Describe any collaborative arrangements with outside project partners, including who they are and what their role is with the project:

None


Planning


State Law Chapter 462.356 (Subd. 2) requires review of all capital improvements for compliance with the comprehensive municipal plan. Chapter 13, Section 4 of the City Charter requires Location and Design Review for the purpose of approving the sale of bonds for these projects. Describe how the project is consistent with the adopted City/Park Board comprehensive plans and how the project implements goals and policies as stated in the adopted plans, including specific policy references:


Projects funded with these dollars are consistent with the following direction of the Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board comprehensive plan:


Vision Statement: Dynamic parks that shape city character and meet diverse community needs.


Goal: Park facility renewal and development respects history and focuses on sustainability, accessibility, flexibility and beauty.


Strategy: Integrate sustainable practices, ecological design for landscapes, and green building techniques into new construction and renewal of all amenities, giving priority to those practices that meet or exceed established standards, improve ecological function, and minimize long-term maintenance and operating costs.


Strategy: Implement a sustainable, long-term renewal plan based on a complete inventory of the system, life-cycle cost analysis, and condition assessment of all park facilities.


Strategy: Build or renew facilities to meet or exceed standards for accessibility.


Relevant City of Minneapolis Comprehensive Plan Polices, from the Minneapolis 2040 Plan:

Policy 78 Park Design and Programming: Improve the design and programming of parks to better serve a changing population.

Policy 53 Quality of Life: Perpetuate a high quality of life for Minneapolitans that includes safe, open, and welcoming cultural and social institutions, as well as natural and built infrastructure. Especially applicable is Action Step 53c: Maintain and enhance the many built, historic, arts, and natural environmental assets throughout the city to promote and strengthen communities.

Policy 83 People with Disabilities: Ensure people with disabilities and their families are visible, active, and values members of the community. Especially applicable is Action Step 83h: Increase accessibility of public infrastructure and public amenities.



Provide the date that Location and Design Review was conducted for the project, the outcome of that analysis and the date formal action was taken by the Planning Commission:

Location and Design Review will take place in the spring or summer of implementation years.


Economic Development


Will the project contribute to growth in the city’s tax base? No


Describe the economic development impact of the project:

None


Does the project support redevelopment opportunity that without the project would be infeasible?

No

Transportation


Is the proposed project on an existing or planned transitway, transit route, or high-volume pedestrian corridor? If yes, provide details on how the project will improve the transit and/or pedestrian experience.

Varies. Projects will not specifically improve transit and pedestrian experience beyond the park boundaries.


Does the proposed project anticipate multi-modal enhancements (sidewalks, bicycle or transit facilities)? Provide details.

Park trails and sidewalks may be included in projects.


Is the right-of-way constrained and do you anticipate that modes of travel will be competing for space? Provide details, is there potential for innovative design options? Provide details

All improvements take place within park boundaries.

Operating Impacts


Operations & Capital Asset Maintenance: Varies depending on facilities implemented

Is this request for new or existing infrastructure? Likely a mix of new and existing

What is the expected useful life of the project/Improvement? 20-40 years, depending on facility type

Year that Operating Incr/(Decr) will take effect? Varies

What is the estimated annual operating cost increase or (decrease) for this project? Varies, depending on facility implemented

Any Prior Year Remaining Bond Authorizations? Yes

Prior Year Remaining Bond Authorizations: $4,752,000


Describe how operating cost increases or decreases were determined and include details such as personnel costs, materials, contracts, energy savings, etc:

In those areas where service area master plans have been completed (South and Downtown), comprehensive analysis of maintenance impacts were calculated. This calculation was based on real-world assessments of costs to maintain existing facilities drawn from MPRB's system as well as national models. Each master planned park includes a maintenance cost change estimate at full build out. For instance: conversion of a wading pool to splash pad will result in a $20,000 annual maintenance cost increase--the result of a $15,000 annual credit for removing the wading pool and a $35,000 add for the splash pad. Playgrounds, conversely, will see no maintenance increase nor decrease, because though newer equipment is easier to maintain, those maintenance allocations must be shifted elsewhere in the system to cover other aging infrastructure.


An overall maintenance change number has not been provided for PRKCP, however, because the details of many projects are unknown. In some cases, parks may see increased maintenance costs while at others there may be decreases (for instance, at parks that will have fewer diamonds and larger multi-use field areas). Though a comprehensive maintenance cost accounting has not been provided to CLIC under this project, MPRB operations and planning staff are working together to ensure proper maintenance allocations when individual improvements are implemented, using the service area master plans as a guide.



If new infrastructure, discuss how the department/agency will pay for the increased annual operating costs:

In cases where new infrastructure will be implemented, MPRB will pay for cost changes through its annual general fund budgeting process for departmental allocations.


For new infrastructure, describe the estimated timing and dollar amount of future capital investment required to realize the full expected useful life of the project:

The future capital investment required will depend on the type infrastructure implemented. Aquatic facilities, for instance, may require significant overhaul only every 30-40 years, while playgrounds tend to have a life of about 20. Athletic fields require more regular maintenance. Embedded in MPRB's equity metric is a scoring category that considers useful life of assets. Once assets in a park begin to reach the end of their useful lives, that park’s score will increase, pushing it into the mix for capital improvement. Essentially, MPRB has developed a built-in alarm clock that will bring assets back into the CIP when they approach the end of their useful lives.

Project Coordination


Describe completion status for ongoing projects and how and when the department/agency plans to use the prior year remaining bond authorizations:

The following is an update on unspent bond projects, relative to outstanding bonding presented last year. The list provides a status update on each project and an overview of amounts remaining.


2018 Bond projects

Bassett’s Creek Park (2017 and 2018 funds): The western playground is complete and open to the public. A project focusing on the eastern portion of the park has completed design and community engagement and is out to bid. Construction is expected in 2020. Remaining unspent bonds: $485,000

Jordan Park: This project is just getting underway and community engagement will take place in 2020 with construction in 2021. Remaining unspent bonds: $1,195,000

Lovell Square (2018 and 2019 funding): Community engagement and design is complete and project has completed the bid process. Construction in 2020. Remaining unspent bonds: $352,000

Peavey Park: This project is complete and open to the public and all bonds have been spent.

Perkins Hill Park: Community engagement and design is complete and project has completed the bid process. Construction in 2020. Remaining unspent bonds: $307,400

Phelps Park (2018 and 2019 funding): This project has completed community engagement and design. Construction is expected to begin mid-summer 2020. Remaining unspent bonds: $657,550

Stewart Park: Community engagement is nearing completion. Construction expected in 2020. Remaining unspent bonds: $240,000


2019 Bond projects

Farwell Park: This project has not yet been initiated and may be deliberately delayed due to external factors. Remaining unspent bonds: $264,100

Painter Park: This project has not yet been initiated and may be deliberately delayed due to external factors. Remaining unspent bonds: $200,000

Victory Park: Community engagement is complete and the existing wading pool has been demolished. Final designs and construction plans will be executed in 2020 and construction will begin in 2021. Remaining unspent bonds: $690,000


Replace and Invest Contingency: All 2017 and 2018 bonds have been allocated to projects and fully spent. All 2019 funds have been allocated to projects, two of which are not yet complete (though are under construction): Lyndale Farmstead building improvements and Currie Park. Remaining unspent bonds: $361,000.





If this is a new project, describe the major project phases and timing anticipated for completing the project:

Project schedules may vary significantly depending on the size of allocation, the specific improvements envisioned, and the scale of change in the park. In general, all projects will require 6-8 months of community engagement, which can happen in concert with design development. At the conclusion of community engagement, construction plans for bidding are prepared and the project is bid for construction. MPRB works to limit inconvenience to the community during construction, and may occasionally phase construction across two calendar years. Construction scheduling is determined by the project manager in consultation with the community.


Scalability/Funding Allocation Flexibility – discuss any flexibility to increase or decrease funding among the years in the five-year plan and the most that could be spent in a given year:

Moving funding from year to year will affect staff ability to implement projects. Because significant work is included in PRKCP, modifying funding years will create "pinch-points" in the design and community engagement process and will delay projects.

Minneapolis Goals and Strategic Direction

Minneapolis is a growing and vibrant world-class city with a flourishing economy and a pristine environment, where all people are safe, healthy and have equitable opportunities for success and happiness.Below is a description of how this project meets each of the City's Goals. Below is a description of how this project meets each of the City's Goals.


Below is a description of how this project meets each of the City's Goals.

Public Safety


Collaborative and community-inclusive strategies to ensure safety for all members of our community:

Construction projects in parks improve safety throughout Minneapolis’s parks, ensuring they are inviting and allow for healthful activities. This project will decommission a wide variety of facility types and replace them with new ones that meet current safety and accessibility standards and expectations.

Housing


The City prioritizes equitable access to safe, stable, accessible, and affordable housing to eliminate racial disparities in housing:

Park improvements relate to housing in that they are sometimes identified as a gentrifying force in neighborhoods. The alternative, however, of not improving parks would do a disservice to those that use them. MPRB is committed to working with the City to identify and address potential park-related gentrification and displacement, in order to contribute to stable neighborhoods with excellent park service. Parks may be improved in neighborhoods threatened with gentrification and displacement. The implementation of major, high quality facilities there could raise fears of exacerbating that reality. Throughout the implementation process, ongoing coordination between MPRB and the City around housing and neighborhood stability will be critical.

Economic Development


The City prioritizes economic inclusion so that all workers and families are supported and People of Color, Indigenous and Immigrant (POCII)-owned businesses in all sectors can thrive.

Quality of life is a critical aspect in a business's decision to relocate to, remain in, or expand in Minneapolis. City residents consistently rate parks as having extremely high importance to their quality of life. Therefore, park renewal to maintain quality and incorporate desired amenities can contribute significantly to business retention and recruitment, including among under-represented groups.

Public Services


The City prioritizes reliable and equitable access to high-quality public services.

Though semi-autonomous, MPRB strives for the same efficiency, transparency, and responsibility as stated in the City's goal. MPRB follows the City's purchasing procedures to ensure fair selection of services and detailed in-house project-by-project accounting ensures each project has a carefully managed budget. MPRB involves the public extensively in the scoping and design of park projects and provides detailed and extensive notifications during construction.

Environmental Justice:


The City prioritizes sustainable practices and renewable resources to equitably address climate change while restoring and protecting our soil, water and air.

All park projects are executed with an eye to facility longevity and sustainability. MPRB strives to improve environmental performance and reduce waste with every construction project. Facility renewal and implementation of new amenities are important in meeting current and future needs for park infrastructure, which is a critical aspect of the city.

Built Environment & Transportation:


The City prioritizes high quality neighborhoods, streets, infrastructure and equitable access to multimodal transportation in all parts of the City through thoughtful planning and design.

Ensuring high quality parks communicates investment in people’s lives, no matter where they come from. In many cases, neighborhoods are physically and socially centered on their parks. Improving the park will improve the neighborhood.

Public Health:


The City Prioritizes positive youth development so that all children can grow healthy and safe:

Improving park facilities and adding desired amenities can increase health and quality of life for neighborhood residents of every age, ability level, economic status, race, ethnicity, and national origin. All the activities included in this project will create or improve outdoor facilities devoted to sports, fitness, strength development, social interaction, calmness amidst nature, cooperation amongst children, and other healthy activities.


Arts and Culture:


The City prioritizes arts and culture as important part of inclusive economic development and placemaking in our communities:

MPRB seeks to incorporate the arts into projects when it can, by partnering with the City of Minneapolis’s public art program. Even without the specific inclusion of art in park improvements, however, creative and inspiring design is a key part of the park improvement process.

Additional Information

The following chart documents parks in which improvements will take place, including anticipated funding years and sources (2020-2025) MPRB Neighborhood Park Capital Program). Though the PRKCP project previously was used for MPRB's capital levy funded rehabilitation and special projects, it now includes major projects added as part of the NPP20 agreement (as long as the park-specific allocations are below $1,100,000). The bulk of the funding comes from Net Debt Bonds with some capital levy (see the PRKRP project for NPP20-funded rehabilitation projects).


Selection of nearly all these projects was based on the neighborhood equity metrics developed as part of the NPP20 ordinance. Equity rankings are re-calculated each year. The 2020-2025 CIP is built on rankings calculated in 2019. Each park's 2019 equity ranking is included in the chart for reference (in parentheses after the park name). The lowest numbers demonstrate higher need.


In order to ensure projects move forward in a timely fashion, MPRB is requesting a contingency factor under PRKCP. This "Replace and Invest Contingency" (R&I Contingency) will be used for project construction, to close the gap on site unknowns, increased bid amounts, and other construction-related factors out of MPRB control. The most significant reason for project delays is bidding issues. The contingency will only be used when necessary, and unspent contingency will be used to originate new projects in later years. The contingency constitutes 10% of the total project-based allocations in the MPRB CIP. Note that some parks that previously appeared in PRKCP have been moved to their own projects and therefore do not appear any longer below.


Based on conversations during the 2019 presentation of MPRB's CLIC requests, staff performed an analysis of funding levels for various parks. CLIC members expressed ongoing support for MPRB's equity metrics, but raised questions about how much money each park was getting when it was entered into the CIP. MPRB staff looked at funding levels for each park receiving equity-driven NPP20 funds and developed a system for determining the relative scale of investments, based on size of park, number of amenities, presence of a recreation center, and degree of change proposed in the adopted master plan for the park. This analysis resulted in the discovery of eleven parks that have been under-funded in the early years of NPP20, relative to other similar parks. MPRB's adopted 2025 CIP year is considered a "normalization year," wherein additional funds are provided to certain parks. Few new parks were brought into the CIP in 2025 in order to square-up parks that were previously under-funded. In some cases (see Cleveland Park below) the normalization funding came earlier in order to ensure a single project can be completed at once. More detailed information will be provided to CLIC along with MPRB's presentation of its request in 2020.


2021

Corcoran (47): $727,150 Net Debt Bonds

Hall (19): $393,625 Net Debt Bonds

Sumner Field (2): $100,000 Net Debt Bonds

R&I Contingency: $680,000 Net Debt Bonds

Community Garden Fund: $75,000 Capital Levy

The Mall (120): $89,279 Capital Levy


2022

Cedar Avenue Field (11): $600,000 Net Debt Bonds

Folwell (7): $1,000,000 Net Debt Bonds

Franklin Steele (67): $740,000 Net Debt Bonds

Harrison (15): $390,775 Net Debt Bonds

Murphy Square (28): $200,000 Net Debt Bonds

Riverside (9): $1,060,000 Net Debt Bonds

Smith Triangle (101): $231,525 Net Debt Bonds

Willard (3): $330,125 Net Debt Bonds.

R&I Contingency: $680,000 Net Debt Bonds

Community Garden Fund: $75,000 Capital Levy

The Mall (120): $258,011 Capital Levy


2023

Bethune (31): $735,000 Net Debt Bonds

Bohanon (13): $1,000,000 Net Debt Bonds

Cleveland (24): $950,000 Net Debt Bonds (increased for funding normalization--see above)

Cottage (26): $500,000 Net Debt Bonds

Farview (17): $850,000 Net Debt Bonds

Glen Gale (32): $600,000 Net Debt Bonds

Harrison (15): $450,000 Net Debt Bonds and $250,000 Capital Levy

Willard (3): $669,875 Net Debt Bonds

R&I Contingency: $680,000 Net Debt Bonds

Community Garden Fund: $75,000 Capital Levy

NOTE: Farview, previously funded in 2023, saw a funding increase as part of funding normalization--see above--that led to establishment of a stand-alone project (PRK42)


2024

Beltrami (69): $490,000 Net Debt Bonds (some funding previously requested in 2024 was moved to 2025)

Jackson Square (37): $700,000 Net Debt Bonds

Lyndale School Pool (1): $931,000 Net Debt Bonds

Shingle Creek (61): $1,050,000 Net Debt Bonds.

St. Anthony (40): $1,050,000 Net Debt Bonds

R&I Contingency: $680,000 Net Debt Bonds

NOTE: Audubon, previously funded in 2023, saw a funding increase as part of funding normalization--see above--that led to establishment of a stand-alone project (PRK43)

NOTE: Russell Triangle, previously funded in 2023, was eliminated from MPRB's adopted CIP


2025

Beltrami (69): $565,000 Net Debt Bonds

Hall (19): $250,000 Net Debt Bonds (second allocation to this park under funding normalization--see above)

Logan (39): $979,850 Net Debt Bonds

Stewart (6): $830,000 Net Debt Bonds and $270,000 Capital Levy (second allocation to this park under funding normalization--see above)

Sumner (2): $600,000 Net Debt Bonds (second allocation to this park under funding normalization--see above)

Central Gym (21): $700,000 Net Debt Bonds (second allocation to this park under funding normalization--see above)

Whittier (27): $300,000 Net Debt Bonds (second allocation to this park under funding normalization--see above)

R&I Contingency: $680,000 Net Debt Bonds


2026

MPRB has not yet adopted a 2026 CIP. The current MPRB 6-year CIP includes the 2020 through 2025 years. For the purposes of this request, MPRB is estimating the following types of expenditures:

Logan Park (39) completion of the 2025 request: $420,000

R&I Contingency: $680,000 Net Debt Bonds

Various park projects to be determined (some of which may become stand-alone projects): $5,832,000 Net Debt Bonds and $584,000 Capital Levy