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River Corridor

Through July 6: Last chance to weigh in on new riverfront land-use rules

Riders along the Mississippi River Corridor Critical Area, our local national park!

​If all goes well, new rules governing riverfront development and protections in the Mississippi River corridor, our local national park, could be in place by the end of 2016. Photo by Tom Reiter

FMR encourages all river-lovers to contact Judge Lipman by July 6, 4:30 p.m. to let him know that you support strong river development rules in our national park, tell him why the river is important to you and share what you would like to see protected or improved. Read on to learn more about the proposed rules for the metro-area stretch of the Mississippi River and how to contribute your voice.

May 10

Mississippi River Critical Area rulemaking enters final phase

The Mississippi River Corridor was established as a State Critical Area almost 40 years ago to protect and preserve the unique scenic, natural and cultural features of the 72-mile section of the Mississippi River flowing through the Twin Cities from Dayton to Hastings. In 2009, FMR led the effort to pass legislation authorizing new rules to guide river development in this important area. At long last, the proposed rules are heading for the final phase of rule-making — formal review and adoption.

March 15

More great news on the N/NE Minneapolis riverfront

The Minneapolis park board recently signed a purchase agreement for the riverfront parcel at 4022 1/2 Washington Avenue North. Located between North Mississippi Regional Park and the Upper Harbor Terminal, the site will someday be a critical link and addition to the Above the Falls Regional Park along the north and northeast Minneapolis stretch of the Mississippi River. 

News of another riverfront property acquisition in the works. $1 million from General Mills for new park development. And an excellent U of M researcher and Northside resident joins FMR to look into improved community connections. This is one great month for increasing public access to the Mississippi River in the Above the Falls area!  

February 9

N/NE Minneapolis riverfront regional park continues to grow

A little more green, please — for our waters and our riverfront communities. (Aerial view, from the north, above Saint Anthony Falls.) Courtesy City of Minneapolis

A little more green, please — for a healthy river and riverfront communities. (Aerial view, from the north, above Saint Anthony Falls.) Courtesy City of Minneapolis

Good news: The Minneapolis park board now owns over half the land needed to bring continuous riverfront parks and trails to the banks of the Mississippi River in north and northeast Minneapolis. FMR is continuing to advocate for and support the Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board’s acquisition work while also investigating ways to work with north Minneapolis residents to increase and strengthen their local riverfront access.

January 11

New visitor center is centerpiece of Fort Snelling’s 2020 vision

Picture of Fort Snelling

As Fort Snelling approaches it’s bicentennial in 2020, the Minnesota Historical Society is gearing up for exciting changes to the site, including a new visitor center, improved trails and wayfinding, less surface parking, and a renewed focus on the historical significance of this special place perched high above the confluence of the Mississippi and Minnesota Rivers.

December 9

Saint Paul reveals exciting plans for river balcony park

Saint Paul River Balcony rendering from the Great River Passage Plan

A rendering of the proposed Saint Paul River Balcony from the Great River Passage Plan.

On September 24, Saint Paul Mayor Coleman presented the city's latest vision to improve the connections between the Mississippi River and downtown Saint Paul while improving the parkland and connections along the river between the Science Museum and the Union Depot.

October 12

New FMR film about our local national park — Watch the trailer and sign up for the premiere!



To celebrate the 100th anniversary of the National Park Service in 2016, FMR is making a documentary about our very own national park, the Mississippi National River and Recreation Area. The film tells the story of the effort to get Congress to designate the park, explores the meaning of this legacy, and stresses the need for continued stewardship and advocacy on the park's behalf. Check it out!

October 8

Three cheers for the Minneapolis Park Board

The Minneapolis Park & Recreation Board has stayed strong in the face of difficult negotiations with Graco Corporation. In the end MPRB had to take the land along the river for a trail easement by eminent domain. Graco tried and failed to get something in return that would allow them to develop a portion of the adjacent property slated to become Hall’s Island Park. Instead, MPRB paid more than $600,000 for land Graco had promised to donate over a decade ago.

July 20

Riverview Corridor Transit Study underway. Your input wanted!

Ramsey County Regional Rail Authority is conducting a study of possible ways to improve public transit options within the Riverview Corridor — located between Union Depot in downtown Saint Paul and the Mall of America. While the project has the promise of greatly improving public access to the river, FMR is also concerned about the possibility of a new bridge across the Mississippi in the scenic gorge. The study, which will be completed in early 2016, will recommend a preferred route and transit mode to be studied further. Provide your input today!

July 20

Oversized development downsized at Mississippi and Minnesota River confluence

Last month, FMR appealed the Saint Paul Planning Commission decision to grant a height variance in the confluence area because we believed it would greatly impact this significant portion of the river corridor. We are pleased that the Saint Paul City Council decreased the building height variance to allow a 60 foot building instead of a 73.5 foot building — a 13.5 foot decrease.

June 12

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