City Manager Blog

Each week I send out an FYI Update to City Council and staff on the latest happenings within the City of Maplewood.  I would like to share this information with the residents of Maplewood, as well. 

Follow my blog if you would like to be kept up to date on the behind the scenes happenings within the City. 

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Oct 07

October 4th 2019

Posted on October 7, 2019 at 10:18 AM by Chad Bergo

Meetings and Announcements:   
The next City Council meeting and workshop will be held on October 14th at 5:30 for the Workshop and
Council meeting at 7 pm. I am working with the Management team to develop the fall line-up for the Workshops. More details to come.

Updates from Staff and Council:
Lillie Newspapers Out of Business:
City staff is researching alternatives for a legal publishing paper. I have asked Attorney Batty to look at if there are any other options for posting meetings and other legal notifications. Clerk Sindt got a bid from the Pioneer Press and it is very comparable to what we were paying Lillie. See article below on the closing.

6th Annual Maplewood Rec Run 3K/5K
The morning of our started out chilly but quickly warmed up and turned out to be perfect running weather. Runners participated in pre-race fun which included games, activity stations, public safety vehicle tours and a pre-race warmup with Superman (PD’s very own Derek Fritze)! We had a great turnout and were able to raise $1,600 for our Youth Scholarship Fund.

A huge thanks to the volunteers, Parks & Rec Staff,  and the Public Safety Department that helped make the event a success!

  • David Grupa Portrait
  • Suburban Sportswear
  • Patrick’s Trophies
  • Brueggers Bagels
  • GoGo Squeez

It was a busy week at the Nature Center - Highlights include:

  • 6 preschool classes visited the Nature Center this week along with a busload of high-school students – we were excited to have them join us!
  • Hosting an Emerald Ash Borer Program  -  Education about this issue is a critical step toward helping reduce the spread of the disease and more effectively managing the ash borer. 
  • Nature Center staff and volunteers are participating in the 3M Visiting Wizards Teachers Workshop, at the 3M campus on Friday night.  This is a great opportunity to meet teachers, network, and to represent the City and the Nature Center. 

Hillcrest Golf Course Redevelopment Master Planning Process
The City of Saint Paul has kicked off its master planning process for the Hillcrest Golf Course. The Saint Paul Port Authority is the property owner of the former golf course and is working with Saint Paul on developing a plan for future use of this land. The golf course is completely within the City of Saint Paul but borders Maplewood to the north and east. Maplewood staff is serving on the technical advisory committee for the planning process. This committee had its first meeting this week and will meet monthly throughout the entire process. In addition, Saint Paul Mayor Melvin Carver appointed 12 citizens to serve on the Hillcrest Community Advisory Committee. Two of the 12 are Maplewood residents – Linda Martinez-Higgins and Tiffany Scott Knox. The Hillcrest Community Advisory Committee will hold its first meeting later this month. Both the technical and community advisory committees will initially be focusing on establishing priorities for the site. Staff will be providing regular updates to the council as this process progresses. The entire planning process is expected to take 18 months.
Here is the news from this week:
 This is a wonderful article about Officer Bergeron’s work to create a mental health outreach team. 
Reference:  Maplewood Police Officer
An incredible story about one of former staff, Tammy Young. Her twin sons wives gave birth to boys on the same day. This is a happy news piece from KARE 11.

Rosedale Center's $100M 'lifestyle center' project will begin next year - Jim Buchta, Star Tribune
Mall owners across the country are looking for creative ways of transforming vacant department stores into more appealing Main Street-style lifestyle centers.
If all goes according to plan in Rosedale Center, the former Herberger’s building will receive last rites as a retail space after the pop-up Haunted Basement closes after Halloween.
The $100 million — or more — of work will begin to transform the building and an adjacent parking lot into Roseville’s latest neighborhood. Owner Jones Lang LaSalle (JLL) wants to transform the 50-year-old mall into the metro’s latest retail and entertainment lifestyle center with apartments and amenities beyond stores.
“People will live here and eat and work here,” said Lisa Crain, Rosedale’s general manager. “This will become more than just a shopping center.”
While the project is aimed at helping inject new energy into the middle-age mall, such redevelopment projects are happening at shopping centers across the country — and major world centers. Dozens of mall operators have given their shopping centers radical makeovers aimed at reimagining the way people live and shop.
The reinvention is a must as traditional brick-and-mortar retailers compete with online stores — and the mall mainstays, particularly department stores, are struggling.
“It’s really important that places like Rosedale reinvest in these markets and make sure they’re anticipating the changing demands,” said Pat Trudgeon, Roseville’s city manager.
The Rosedale plan is the latest iteration of what’s happening at Southdale, where apartments have replaced parking spaces and there’s a new Life Time fitness, Restoration Hardware store and community library, said Peggy Lord, assistant director at the Center for Retail Design & Innovation at the University of Minnesota’s College of Design’s Retail Merchandising Program.
“The consumer today is looking for experiences and adding upscale restaurants, fitness centers, pop-up stores and new retail concepts that improve the quality of the shopping experience [while] making it more interactive,” Lord said.
Lord said the key to success for owners trying reinvent their regional shopping centers is making it an experience that drives traffic to that mall.
The International Council of Shopping Centers in its “Envision 2020” report listed the community concept as one of the biggest retail changes that have seen success. Basically, the idea is to fully integrate the mall into the surrounding community, becoming another town center.
For example, Liberty Center near Cincinnati has traditional retail and restaurant options, but it also has office and residential buildings, fitness centers, a library and event spaces including a chapel.
Earlier this year JLL announced plans to add hundreds of market-rate and age-restricted rentals, a hotel, offices, restaurants and new shops on the mall’s south side. There will be green space, too.
This week, Crain released new preliminary renderings of the project and said the team has lined up several partners who have committed to helping the firm tackle various aspects of the project. The company said it will present its plans to the city in the next few weeks.
Roseville’s Trudgeon said plans have been quietly discussed for several months at the city level and that he supports the project. Still, JLL will have to request a conditional-use permit for the housing component of the project, which would be built in several phases.
“Having a variety of uses and strengthening the retail core, but making it more experiential place for people to go, including housing, really strengthens their position in the market and in Roseville,” Trudgeon said.
He said the city has been fully developed for several years and that the mall update will likely become the city’s biggest development project.
Because Roseville is a fully developed suburb, he said, developers have been canvassing the city for potential redevelopment sites like the one at Rosedale. Such projects are important because the needs of the city have changed.
For example, even though Roseville is in the midst of a record year for construction projects, it has been at least 30 years since anyone has built a market-rate apartment building, and many residents are aging out of their single-family housing and are ready for more updated rental options.
Hye-Young Kim, an associate professor at University of Minnesota and retail merchandising director at the U’s Center for Retail Design and Innovation, said redevelopment efforts like Rosedale’s have the potential to help people living healthier lives.
Recent research shows restoration from mental fatigue and chronic time pressure can be achieved in such lifestyle centers that include manicured gardens, plants, fountains and walkways that are paired with trendy retail, dining and entertainment spots.
“That is what today’s lifestyle shoppers want,” she said. “They are not just wealthy, upscale experience-seeking shoppers.”
Jim Buchta • 612-673-7376
District 622 e-news for Thursday, October 3, 2019
At a glance
·  No School on Friday, October 4 (classes held for Adult Basic Education)
·  Upcoming Immunization Clinics
·  Fall Productions from Tartan Theatre and North Drama
·  Alumni News
·  Community Education News
Visit the e-news webpage or open the attached PDF to read this week's District 622 e-news.

Thanks for reading this week’s FYI. Please call if you have any questions or concerns. Enjoy the very fall like weekend. Melinda