Turning a Parking Wasteland Into a Neighborhood ... With a New Stadium

IMG_3955.jpegOver the past two weeks, 160 teams from 70 universities around the U.S. and Canada have been thinking about one thing: downtown Minneapolis.

Participants in this year's Gerald D. Hines Urban Design Competition were challenged to create a comprehensive development program for the neighborhood surrounding the site of the new Minnesota Vikings stadium. College of Design students Brice Aarrestad (M.Arch), Phil Bussey (M.Arch), Jodi Refsland (MLA), Kyle Van Someren (B.S. Arch '08) and Jason Vanselow (M.Arch) are busy representing the home team.

IMG_3953.jpeg"We know this area to be a parking wasteland," said Aarrestad. "We hope to accomplish an urban design that makes living in East Downtown attractive, convenient, and full of rich experiences every day, not just Viking game days."

Each team is required to have five students representing at least three disciplines. Their final proposal, due on January 28, will include everything from drawings and site plans to market-feasible financial data. The winning team will receive $50,000 and the finalist teams $10,000 each. A jury will meet in February to choose four finalist teams and any number of honorable mentions.

Dean Tom Fisher recently spoke with Minnesota Public Radio about how the new stadium might encourage downtown community growth. You can listen to his conversation here.

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