Critical Area

Mississippi River Critical Area

Critical Area
DNR sues Minneapolis over riverfront development rules
A riverfront property owner wants to build a home right on the edge of the erosion-prone bluff, breaking the rules Minneapolis adopted to protect the river. But the city approved the plan anyway, setting a concerning precedent. Read more
Rendering of house development on river bluff
What St. Paul's new riverfront rules should include
St. Paul's city council will probably vote on a new critical area ordinance this fall or winter. Here are three provisions we'll be looking for in their next draft. Read more
Sunset from Harriet Island over the river.
St. Paul continues to dodge new riverfront development rules
St. Paul's promising ordinance has been stalled for months, with no explanation from city leaders. Read more
The downtown St. Paul skyline stretches across the top of the frame, with the river and residential housing in the foreground.
St. Paul's new bird-safe, river-oriented development rules move ahead
We think the city's proposed Mississippi River Corridor Critical Area development guidelines are the best we've seen. Read more
St. Paul skyline and Mississippi River
River Guardians' impacts in 2022
In 2022, 1,225 River Guardians sent 2,974 letters to 166 decision-makers, significantly impacting our work towards a healthier, more resilient river community. Read more
Paddleboat on river with young angler
What can cities do to guide development and protect open space?

When we work with community members involved in local development and habitat protection issues, we often hear similar questions: "What can my city leaders do about this issue?" "Does anyone have the power to change this project?" Here's a summary of how cities can shape development and protect open space.  >>

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From Ramsey to Ravenna, updated riverfront protections come to life

Until recently, the Twin Cities riverfront lacked consistent development standards and environmental protections. After many years of work, FMR is now supporting 25 cities and townships as they finish the final step in a long journey for better riverfront management.  >>

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Upcoming Events

Saturday, April 20, 2024 - 9:30am to 12:00pm
West River Parkway and 36th Street/44th Street, Minneapolis
Applications due Friday, May 3 by 5 p.m.
Virtual and in-person
Thursday, May 9, 2024 - 6:00pm to 8:00pm
Hastings Sand Coulee Scientific and Natural Area