Mpls city council approves Peavey Plaza design

Mayor R.T. Rybak and the Minneapolis City Council today approved the new design for the revitalization of Peavey Plaza.


View of Peavey Plaza looking south, summer

Artist rendering courtesy of Oslund & Associates

In a release sent out this morning, Mayor R.T. Rybak praised the design, created by Tom Oslund, the designer behind Gold Medal Park and the I-35 bridge memorial.

“The new, revitalized Peavey Plaza retains the most beloved aspects of the current Peavey Plaza and dramatically improves upon it,” said Mayor R.T. Rybak. “We could not, and would not, build today the Peavey Plaza that we have loved for 40 years, but we are getting the best of both: we are honoring the modernist history of the original and making it safe, accessible and sustainable for the 21st century.”

Last month a group of architects and preservationists – including the original architect of the plaza, M. Paul Friedberg – expressed concerns that too much was being lost in the renovation.

The new design calls for more efficient fountains and meets the American Disabilities Act requirements.

The $8-$10 million project is supported by $2 million in state bond funding, with the balance to come from private contributions that the Mayor and representatives of the Minnesota Orchestral Association have committed to raising. The City and the Minnesota Orchestra are collaborating in the revitalization of Peavey Plaza, which is adjacent to Orchestra Hall, in conjunction with the Orchestra’s $50 million renovation of Orchestra Hall.

Groundbreaking is tentatively set for spring 2012 with a grand opening in summer 2013.

  • Another vapid statement from Rybak. Of course they could have rebuilt Peavey nearly identically, they just aren’t willing to pay for it. He should just say “We don’t have the money to rebuild Peavey equal to the standards of the 1970s because the middle class won’t stop whining about property taxes and the Republicans are in charge of state funding, so we’re going to build this bland copy of Millennium Park in Chicago instead.”

  • Kasia

    The new design is terrible. I have never been able to accept the idea that minimal effort is the same as modern design. One of my first memories of Minneapolis as a five year old transplant from New York City was Peavy Plaza. The stepping stones among the rushing water fountains are thrilling even now that I am an adult. The gardening is beautiful and inspired by japanese styles. The only problem with it is that it is over-run by homeless people. It is not a relaxing place to sit quietly or eat lunch, because you spend the whole time contemplating the human tragedy of addiction and mental disorder. We should use the $2 million of state money to fund mental health facilities and alcohol addiction treatment, not create another cutesy “modernist” waste of space. As a lover of great spaces, it would be a tragedy to lose Peavey Plaza. Join the Facebook group to support Peavey Plaza:!/pages/Friends-of-Peavey-Plaza-Minneapolis/109797221745

  • boba

    Based on the artist rendering of the proposed PP, it looks like a nice dance floor w/ good seating and viewing of a temporary band shell for another church fund raiser. At least they’ll save the plaza’s water for the over-flowing dumpster in the foreground.

    Will it look as good at dusk or at night with just lights for a lone passing-by viewer or squatter?