Inside the plans to redevelop St. Paul's Hillcrest Golf Course
Two plans have emerged for what to do with the former Hillcrest Golf Course on St. Paul's East Side.
The state of play: Both involve a mix of an industrial buildings, housing and parkland, but they diverge on how much of each.
The "Hilltop Plan" would have a large, 24-acre park in the middle, with denser housing on the north and industrial buildings on the interior.
- 1,151 units of housing
- 750 to 800 jobs
- 24 acres of parkland
The "Jobs Focus Plan" would be heavier on industrial uses built up along McKnight Avenue. There would be lower density housing and a smaller park.
- 900 units of housing
- 1,000 jobs
- 13 acres of parkland
The intrigue: Hillcrest, in a blue-collar neighborhood, is about the same size as the Ford site, another redevelopment project located in the affluent Highland Park neighborhood.
- St. Paul City Council approved more than $107 million in tax-increment financing to pay for infrastructure and affordable housing at the Ford site.
- Hillcrest got $10 million worth of help through taxpayer bonds that the St. Paul Port Authority used to buy the course. Otherwise, the Port Authority will have to pay for the roughly $27 million worth of infrastructure and site cleanup by selling land to developers.
What they're saying: Ethan Osten, a member of the Community Advisory Committee for Hillcrest, told MinnPost that the city's lack of investment will make the project harder to develop.
- Port Authority President Lee Krueger disagreed, telling Nick the land sales should produce enough money "to pay for infrastructure that will be high quality."
What's next: The city, Port Authority and architect Cuningham are taking feedback and hope to get a master plan approved this fall.
- The best-case scenario would see construction begin in 2023, but a total buildout could take 8 to 10 years.
This story first appeared in the Axios Twin Cities newsletter, designed to help readers get smarter, faster on the most consequential news unfolding in their own backyard.
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