1. dinkytown-home

    The identity of Dinkytown has been established through its eclectic, local businesses that create the neighborhood. SaveDinkytown.com aims to ensure the vitality and presence of locally owned shops, give people a voice in Dinkytown developments, and preserve the area’s identity.

    Learn more about recent developments that threaten Dinkytown and how to get involved.

  2. Action Alert 7/29/13: The 11th Hour is Fast Approaching!

    July 29, 2013 by Save Dinkytown

    The City Council meets Friday, August 2nd, at 9:30 a.m.

    Please try to be there to show your support for Save Dinkytown. The meeting is in the City Council Chamber, Room 317 City Hall. We’ll make some signs but feel free to make and bring your own. There likely won’t be public comment time so a physical presence in the room is crucial.

    1. Please contact your Council Member. If you simply phone them and identify yourself as a constituent who wants them to oppose the rezoning of Dinkytown, that counts a lot.

    2. An email to them with the same message is also powerful. Add the other Council Members to the cc field of your email so it reaches all of them.

    3. It is also helpful if you give at least one substantive basis for your opposition to the rezoning. Some possible points are listed below:


    City Council contact information

    Kevin Reich 612 673-2201  kevin.reich@minneapolismn.gov

    Cam Gordon 612 673-2202   cam.gordon@minneapolismn.gov

    Barbara Johnson 612 673-2204   barbara.johnson@minneapolismn.gov

    Lisa Goodman  612 673-2207  lisa.goodman@minneapolismn.gov

    Gary Schiff  612 673-2209   gary.schiff@minneapolismn.gov

    Meg Tuthill  612 673-2210   meg.tuthill@minneapolismn.gov

    Diane Hofstede 612 673-2203  diane.hofstede@minneapolismn.gov

    Don Samuels  612 673-2205   don.samuels@minneapolismn.gov

    Robert Lilligren  612 673-2206  robert.lilligren@minneapolismn.gov

    Elizabeth Glidden  612 673-2208  elizabeth.glidden@minneapolismn.gov

    John Quincy  612 673-2211  john.quincy@minneapolismn.gov

    Sandy Colvin Roy 612 673-2212  sandra.colvin.roy@minneapolismn.gov

    Betsy Hodges  612 673-2213  betsy.hodges@minneapolismn.gov


    You can pick one of these reasons listed below for opposing the rezoning of Dinkytown and paste it into your email urging each Council Member to oppose the rezoning when they meet on Friday, Aug. 2nd to vote on this.

    1.  The four-square block Dinkytown commercial core was never intended by the neighborhood Master Plan to be part of the higher density student apartment developments that are adding 4000 upscale units to the area near Dinkytown. Destroying Dinkytown is too high a price for all students to pay, just to get a few hundred more such units that further diminish affordability and diversity for young people seeking a University education.

    2.  If the City Council gives its approval to the rezoning, it would set a precedent for granting a similar rezoning change for the other blocks in the Dinkytown commercial core (and even for other similarly zoned, C1, small business cores throughout the City’s neighborhoods). This would lead to upscale condos and apartments displacing their locally owned small businesses.

    3. Why this rush to judgment to open the door for rezoning all of Dinkytown?   The City needs to step back—do the proper planning involving all stakeholders— wait for the Dinkytown Small Area Plan to emerge and then ask for Developer proposals that adhere to the current C1 zoning.

  3. Action Alert 7/15/2013

    July 16, 2013 by Save Dinkytown

    Don’t Let Corporate Real Estate Speculators Destroy Dinkytown!

    Critical Public Hearing on the Fate of Dinkytown

    Dinkytown is one of Minneapolis’s oldest commercial districts (130 years old!). Currently Dinkytown is zoned C1 for small-scale neighborhood commercial uses.  This is to protect and promote the independent businesses and the unique character of the community. However, real estate speculators, the Rauenhorst Trust’s Opus Development Company, want to build a large six story student housing unit that current C1 zoning does not allow. To do this, Opus has requested a zoning change to C3A to accommodate higher-density, mixed-use commercial and housing for a roughly half-block area of Dinkytown.  The Minneapolis City’ Council’s Zoning and Planning Committee meeting on Thursday, July 25th – 9:30 a.m. is the last opportunity for public hearing on the proposed rezoning.


    Rezoning for the OPUS project, will give a “green light” to other developers who are already bidding on Dinkytown properties. Opus is a merchant developer whose main agenda is maximizing profit, not investing in Dinkytown. According to a company associate, the property is likely to be sold even before it is finished — flipped to out-of-state investors, distant landlords who don’t have a stake in Dinkytown. Dinkytown is still 69% small business. This is something city officials should be proud of and protect, not jeopardize. Opus’s plans will demolish several Dinkytown landmark businesses.  This project will disrupt an intensely local economy and funnel our money to Eastern hedge fund investors.


    Finally, this is not a “done deal” despite what official parties have said. Opus Group has been working behind the scenes for months to get the buy-in of key staff prior to the affected public being aware of the project. Opus’s lead attorney is a former employee of the city. The Opus Group would like to ride through the city’s decision making process using its privileged connections and the false assumption that this project is inevitable. However, our elected officials still have to take several key votes on the issue. Help us to hold them accountable and demand they stand with the small businesses and supporters of Dinkytown, not corporate special interests!

    TAKE ACTION!  Demand that our elected representatives vote for the public interest and not corporate special interests. Nearly 3,000 of you have signed the Save Dinkytown petition opposing rezoning Dinkytown to accommodate the OPUS project. ACT NOW:


    1. Contact Minneapolis City Councilors on the Planning and Zoning Committee (see list)

    Suggested message:  “Dinkytown is currently zoned to protect its unique character and to support and encourage locally owned, independent business.  Dinkytown is a C1 commercial zone in all city planning documents, including the future land use plan, the Marcy Holmes Neighborhood Master Plan, and the 15th St. SE study, which targets residential redevelopment for the area immediately to the North of the business district. Dinkytown’s unique character is part of what makes Minneapolis a great city and must be respected. Opus Development Company wants to build an upscale, six story dormitory type building in Dinkytown.  To do this they need to change the zoning and to tear down several of the area’s landmark businesses. Changing the zoning just to accommodate Opus Development Company is wrong.  As a merchant developer, OPUS plans to sell this development to outside investors who don’t know or respect our neighborhood.  This type of large-scale, absentee owned development does not fit in with Dinkytown and will destroy its unique character. Dinkytown should not be destroyed so that corporate special interests can profit at the expense of our community.  I urge you to oppose this proposal and to vote against changing the zoning in Dinkytown.”

    Members of the Minneapolis Planning and Zoning Committee :

    1. Gary Schiff, chair – gary.schiff@minneapolismn.gov / (612) 673-2209

    2. Meg Tuthill, vice-chair – meg.tuthill@minneapolismn.gov / (612) 673-2210

    3. Lisa Goodman – lisa.goodman@minneapolismn.gov /(612) 673-2207

    4. Barbara Johnson – barbara.johnson@minneapolismn.gov / (612) 673-2204

    5. Cam Gordon - cam.gordon@minneapolismn.gov / (612) 673-2202

    6. Kevin Reich – kevin.reich@minneapolismn.gov / (612) 673-2201


    2. Attend the public hearing of the Minneapolis City Council Zoning and Planning (Z&P) Committee on Thursday, July 25th at 9:30 a.m.  The committee meets in the City Council Chambers in Room 317 of Minneapolis City Hall (350 South 5th Street).

    Show your support by being present and testifying.  Your testimony is important. We need City Councilors to see and hear from representatives of the hundreds of citizens who oppose this favoritism to corporate special interests. Bring something to say and a sign!

    Want more information or to volunteer for our strategic action team? Call Matt Hawbaker at 612-xxx-xxxx, or e-mail him at mhwbkr@gmail.com

    More information: What is the Zoning & Planning (Z&P )Committee?  A subcommittee of the City Council, the Z&P recommends a course of action to the full City Council for legislative decisions relating to zoning and planning functions in the city, including text and map amendments to the Zoning Code, applications for property rezonings, applications for vacations of streets or alleys, historic designations or variances, and waivers from land use moratoria. Their recommendation to the council is highly influential.

    Save Dinkytown’s FAQ and an Op-Ed by Matt Hawbaker in the Star Tribune: “Dinkytown is imperiled by redevelopment plan” has more details on the issue.