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Riverfront Re-Imagined Project

The City of Rochester has released a Statement of Interest (SOI) for the Riverfront Re-imagined project and is seeking submissions by January 30, 2020. An innovative development partner is being sought to revitalize and transform one of Rochester’s best remaining land assets. The 2.5-acre parcel is on the riverfront in the heart of the downtown and the Destination Medical Center (DMC) distric

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Project Information

About the project

Project Phase (Pre-concept, Concept, Plan, Develop, Available, Archive)

Concept Phase

Project Type

  Building, Planning  


PlanScape Impacts :

Level 1: Housing, Recreation & Open Space

Level 2: Waterfront

DMC Impacts:


Community Health Impacts:


Contact: Josh Johnson ; Email: TBD ; Phone: TBD

Lead Organization: City of Rochester

Known/Likely Collaborators: City of Rochester, MN ; DMC EDA

Potential Collaborators:

Related Projects

Bloom Rochester River Front Project ; Education, Health and Recreation Space (DMC UMR/Rec sub-district) ; Rochester Public Library Expansion (Two Floor Addition)



Detailed Description



Post Bulletin Abstracts 2019-10-07


The next steps following a failed proposal to build a pair of towers along the Zumbro River could be taken Monday.

The Rochester City Council is expected to start the process of asking developers and others for potential uses and partnerships for 2.5 acres of city-owned land that sits along the west side of the Zumbro River opposite the city-county Government Center, between Second and Fourth streets.

The bulk of the land was slated to be developed by Bloom International Realty until the company backed out of approved plans late last year.

“At that time, we took it as an opportunity to maybe utilize that space for what the community and city deem as priorities,” said Josh Johnsen, the city’s project manager for the Riverfront Re-Imagined effort.

Bloom had held City Council-approved exclusive negotiating rights for most of the property since 2015.

The city plans to start actively soliciting submissions detailing concepts, partnerships and development options for the site Tuesday, if the City Council supports the plan during its 3:30 p.m. work session Monday.

Ideas will be gathered through Jan. 30, with plans to use the information to develop a proposal early next year. A final plan for the project could be in place by the end of 2020.

Where the Bloom project called for a mix of senior housing, hotel rooms and condos, amid parking and retail space, Johnson and Assistant City Administrator Aaron Parrish recently told the Rochester Public Library Board that nothing is ruled out at this point.

That could mean relocating the library, which has been a target for potential expansion in recent years.

In the city’s document seeking development concepts, the library is seen as a potential asset for a future business partner, noting approximately 500,000 community members and visitors visit the site, and its bookmobile, each year.

It also notes the current site could become part of a bigger package.

“The City Council and Library Board would consider leveraging the existing library site to facilitate a (public-private partnership) development framework, or using the site as equity for potential integration within the Riverfront Re-Imagined development,” it states.

Johnsen estimates the land currently occupied by the library would be valued at approximately $4.4 million.

“It’s just another asset we could potentially bring to the table,” he said.

Other benefits developers could potentially tap into by working with the city as partners for developing the riverfront site include eligibility for tax-increment financing and cost sharing with the city or other entities.

The city also indicates potential partnerships with University of Minnesota Rochester and the Rochester YMCA could be part of a plan.

While the city is outlining its potential priorities for developers, Johnsen said a key part of the process calls for giving developers enough room to produce creative proposals without needing to pander to specific city requests.

“We want to actually get their feedback on how they see the development,” he said, noting the goal is to develop a project that meets public needs of the city, as well as private interests of a potential developer.

Parrish said a potential development agreement could unfold in various ways, which might include selling a portion or all of the city land.

“We’re open to all different options for partnership,” he said.





Key Beam Reports on:

Housing, Recreation & Open Space  
July 13, 2021: Racism and the Economy -- Federal Reserve Series

Understanding the implications of structural racism in America's economy. 

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June 27, 2021: AARP Age Friendly Community

(1) 2021-06-27 Status Community Report;  (2) 2020-01-15:Olmsted County joined the AARP Network of Age-Friendly States and Communities.


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June 17, 2021: Sustainable, Resilient Rochester

Sustainability Task Force: Presentations to CMRC, Housing and Feedback from survey and action plan

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May 29, 2021: South-of-Downtown Waterfront Small Area Plan

  March and May 2021 status slides and recording. 

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May 26, 2021: Bryk Apartments March and May Status

March and May reports to DMCC including video, documents and presentations. 

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March 06, 2021: Housing Alliance Coalition

   Work Products: 2021 Housing Profile and Coalition Report 2020

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December 10, 2020: Co-designing of Discovery Walk Concept

Summary of Co-design of Discovery Walk and Codify the co-design process. 

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November 21, 2020: November 2020 DMCC Board Meeting

(1) November 2020 Board Meeting (2) 5 Year DMC Plan Updates and Covid Effects

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July 17, 2020: Eviction Diversion Program

A pre-eviction service to help divert nonpayment of rent, breach of lease, and failure to vacate cases from the courtroom.

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April 25, 2020: COVID-19 Survey and Resource List

In the last month we have seen an influx of challenges and barriers affecting our API communities during the COVID-19 pandemic. One of the challenges we are hearing from our communities is the closure of schools and the implementation of distance learning.

 As of this current school year, Asian American students make up 6.9% of students enrolled in Minnesota. In the last month, we have heard that language access, technology challenges, and financial burdens have presented barriers not only for students to be successful in the classroom, but also for parents who wish to be involved in their children’s education. This has led our communities to face unique barriers to full and equal participation in learning and instruction during the COVID-19 pandemic.

 In response to this issue, the Council has created a community survey to identify ongoing barriers experienced by API families during distance learning. The purpose of this survey is to collect data collect to inform the Minnesota Department of Education (MDE) on areas for improvement and best practices with API students during the distance learning period.

 With this in mind, we ask for your participation in helping us to widely distribute this survey to community members to ensure that their voices are heard by MDE officials. The survey will be open for community response between Monday, April 27th – Friday, May 8th. 

 During this time of COVID-19, we understand that many organizations have limited capacity, and greatly appreciate any support you can provide in getting this survey out to families.  Our simple ask to you is your help in sending out the survey to community members using email and social media. If you can make this small commitment, please confirm by responding to this email. Once we receive your confirmation we will follow-up with language templates and guidance to send out the surveys. Thank you all and we all wish your loved ones well.

 Please if you have any questions you can contact me, or our Research Assistant Daniel Yang, at


 Anjuli Cameron 

 Anjuli Mishra Cameron, M.S. | Research Director

Council on Asian Pacific Minnesotans | 658 Cedar Street, Suite 160 | St. Paul, Minnesota 55155

(651) 757-1742 |  (507) 649-1157 | |




Looking for additional resources during the COVID-19 outbreak? 


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Last modified by support on 2021/05/09
Created by support on 2019/10/05




Site Information
  • For the commercial sector, we tend to register startup activities (new companies and new commercial projects) that bring diversification and high-impact opportunities to the area.
  • For the non-profit sector, we wish to shine light on all the organizations and services that otherwise labor under relative obscurity.
  • Our hope is that will encourage cross-sector collaborations and creative solutions.

While there are a number of registries in the community,'s  distinct value is to pilot a database with a data structure and categorizations that answer the questions such as: What organizations or projects/programs in our community that have purported relevance with some of the over-arching focuses put forward by initiatives such as DMC, J2G and Health Improvements?

This database could be used as one of the ways to explore the capacities of the community. If you are someone on an exploratory journey to learn about the greater Rochester community. could be an interesting first step.

The following defines the various project phases:
  1. Available - a product, program or service is in production
  2. Develop - program or application is being developed
  3. Plan - idea is solid, stakeholders are identified, and there is strong commitment to go forward from all parties.
  4. Concept Phase - idea scoped out with enough details to give an early sizing and/or to build a proof of concept
  5. Pre-concept Phase - an early idea or a requirement.
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