Roseville residents help plan development at Dale Street Fire Station


Roseville residents gathered on April 25 to participate in a conversation and 3D block exercise for the development of the land at Dale Street and Lovell Avenue. The workshop was held at King of Kings Lutheran Church on Dale Street across from where the purposed construction will be done. (photos by Linda E. Andersen/Review)

Roseville residents have been invited to weigh in on the type of redevelopment they would like to see at the site of the Dale Street Fire Station.

The Roseville Housing and Redevelopment Authority (RHRA) is hosting a series of four workshops at King of Kings Lutheran Church with design and development experts to discuss future options for the site.

The second workshop, held on April 25, focused on development scenarios for the three-acre site.

Around 40 local residents split into three different groups and used small rectangular blocks to create 3-D representations of the types of development they would like to see on the land.

The Dale Street Fire Station sits on an acre of prime real estate slated for redevelopment once construction of the new $9 million station located just north of city hall is completed this fall.

The city recently purchased an additional two acres of land neighboring the station to the south and west.

One of the land parcels is zoned for low density residential, meaning up to four housing units could occupy the acre of land. The other parcel is currently zoned for high density residential, which means 12 to 24 units could occupy the land.

The acre of land the fire station currently stands on is zoned for institutional use, which will have to be rezoned before any development can begin.

Several residents seemed skeptical, wondering if the city will actually use their ideas when creating plans for development.

“This is a reversal of what’s normal,” Roseville City Councilmember Jason Etten said. “It’s the city reaching out and asking people what they want. I think it’s a fantastic idea and it’s the right thing to do.”

Residents have varying ideas for what they would like to see built on the property, but many in attendance agreed that they would prefer to have owner-occupied dwellings instead of rental properties.

“I’d like to see our elected officials do what the people want,” Ken Hartman, who lives on nearby Lovell Avenue said. “I wanted all parkland, but they said no way. I’d like to see single-level senior housing. Regardless, we want everything to be owner occupied.”

Roseville resident Jill Altwood said there was a lot of antagonism in the room because a lot of people don’t trust city leaders.

“This is a great opportunity for our elected officials to listen to their constituents,” she said.

Altwood added that she would like to see owner-occupied town homes built on the properties.

Roseville Community Development Coordinator Patrick Trudgeon said the city does not yet have a vision for what types of housing will be built on the property. He said it could be a mix of high and low density with new town homes, condominiums and single-family homes.

“We want to make sure we get desirable housing, make sure it fits in with the neighborhood and we want to include ideas from members of the neighborhood as part of the process,” Trudgeon said.

He said several feasible development plans, which residents at the workshops contribute to will be submitted to the RHRA and the city council this summer.

He said the earliest any major construction would begin would be spring of 2014.

Roseville fire fighters got a head start in clearing parts of the property over the weekend. An abandoned home on the property was burned down by a group of fire fighters. The department took advantage of the opportunity and conducted a controlled-fire training exercise.

Upcoming workshops

There are two more Dale Fire Station Redevelopment Workshops scheduled in May at King of Kings Lutheran Church, located across the street from the Dale Street Fire Station at 2330 Dale St.

Workshop #3: Developer Panel – Tuesday, May 14 from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. Attendees will explore development opportunities and challenges with a panel of developers, market consultants and city representatives to build a strategic road map for the future of Dale Fire Station.

Workshop#4: Framing the Recommendations – Tuesday, May 28 from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. Attendees will contribute to the creation of development recommendations for Dale Fire Station, which will be submitted to the RHRA and city council.

Child care and translation services will be provided at the workshops, but by request only. To request these services so you are able to attend, contact Gretchen Nicholls at 651-265-2280 one week in advance of each workshop. For more information go to http://corridordeveopment.org/ or contact Gretchen Nicholls at gnicholls@lisc.org or 651-265-2280 or Jeanne Kelsey at Jeanne.kelsey@ci.roseville.mn.us or 651-792-7086.

Joshua Nielsen can be reached at  jnielsen@lillienews.com or 651-748-7824.

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