You are on page 1of 2


& Sustainable

Bauknight envisions MPS

headquarters in Willard Homewood

Story Al McFarlane and B.P. Ford, The Editors

Imagine a futuristic multi-story structure emerging to define anew Northside pride and progress
at the Southeast corner of Penn & Plymouth Avenues in North Minneapolis’s Willard
Homewood neighborhood.

nd imagine green design and that is competing for the $60-70 million sustainable communities at the highest levels,

A environmental sustainability as core

features of the expansive complex,
which will deliver 180,000 square feet of new
construction project creating a new
administrative headquarters for the
Minneapolis Public Schools District.
the new MPS building will have zero waste,
zero carbon and free green energy for the
whole building valued at over $267,500
workspace, creating a facility that provides Uniquely, it’s Bauknight’s presence in the annually,” he said, adding that the process,
some 6 times the space of the already competition that takes the notion of organic called e-Generation, will create at least 12
impressive Glover Sudduth Center for sustainability to a whole new level. permanent, living-wage green collar jobs for
Neighborhood and Economic Development, the community.
home of the Minneapolis Urban League, For not only does the Bauknight proposal
which occupies the northeast corner of the present an innovative LEED Platinum The proposal calls for Green roofs, or
intersection. certified project, it delivers advanced Waste permaculture self-sustaining ecosystem
to Green Energy Infrastructure that converts design through landscape and gardens, and a
And visualize the historic Lincoln Junior High waste to electricity, heating & cooling for greenhouse on top of the parking ramp that
School incorporated into the development, building. The result: a zero waste, zero carbon provides year-round fresh fruits and
adding 60,000 sq. ft. of usable space for facility. vegetables. Bauknight said the new facility
community and district programs, plus an will create bridges between educational and
attached ramp providing 825 parking spaces. “The District has asked for a green solution academic aspects of the District by becoming
for their new office building. We believe that a living educational resource.
But wait…there’s more. Consider the value of standard green strategies are only the floor.
a project that masters the art of leveraging, We are proposing the first zero waste and zero In addition, the Bauknight proposal team is
delivering more bang for the buck by carbon school district facility in the country,” the only “minority-led” proposal under
intentional link aging of opportunity Bauknight said is his proposal to the consideration by the District. And Bauknight,
previously obscured by lack of imagination Minneapolis School District. whose architectural signature already dots the
and lack of political will. Northside, is a long time Northside resident,
“By working with PLACE, a national non- and member of the Willard Homewood
Enter Paul Bauknight, principal of the Urban profit who is pioneering the use of existing neighborhood.
Design Group, a design and architectural firm technology to produce environmentally

McFarlane Ford Reader January 18, 2010

“We propose working with Minneapolis
residents, artists and students in a design
workshop led by artist Seitu Jones and the
Urban Design Lab team, to create a public art
Click to navigate to
plan for the Minneapolis Complex,”

And because he lives and works in the

community, Bauknight is adamant about the
value North Minneapolis and the city deserve
and will gain from selecting his proposal to
locate the District headquarters building in the
Willard Homewood neighborhood.
“The District’s student population consists of
70% students of color. A building project in
the heart of communities of color, and
engaging businesses that from the same
community of color demonstrates awareness
of added value and equity our community
should expect from policy makers,”
Bauknight said.

Bauknight says his proposal is unique also

because it leverages the opportunity at hand to Suluki Fardan
create new jobs and business activity in North Robert Belton and Paul Bauknight
Minneapolis at District owned property on
West Broadway and on Lake Street. He occurs within 24-36 months. By the time MPS provide a wealth of opportunities for
proposes to acquire and develop commercial is ready to move into their new building, pre- programmatic partnerships and other potential
applications for these sites. At 1250 West development will have been completed and joint endeavors.” stated Robert Jones, Senior
Broadway, in particular, a planned proceeds from their sale will go into MPS Vice President at the University of Minnesota.
commercial/office facility is expected to coffers either lump sum or rent reduction,” he
create some 300 jobs. said. Bauknight said sustainability has to be more
than just an environmental force - it should
“The redevelopment of 1250 W. Broadway, “We propose working with Minneapolis also be an economic and social force. Creating
807 NE Broadway, the Lehmann Center, on residents, artists and students in a design a LEED certified building in a distressed
West lake, and 2225 East Lake Street will workshop led by artist Seitu Jones and the community contributes to the needs of the
have a significant positive impact on the Urban Design Lab team, to create a public art whole community by anchoring initiatives
District’s long-term operating budget while at plan for the Minneapolis Complex,” he said. that assure that community members have
the same time creating hundreds of jobs, “Many studies have shown the connection stable affordable housing; safe
enhancing the city’s tax base and providing between health and educational outcomes. neighborhoods; access to recreational, social
community amenities for Minneapolis MPS already is involved in most of these and educational resources in order to achieve
residents. This strategy relieves the District’s issues as an employer, an advocate, a partner a good quality of life.
holding costs for these vacated properties and a responsible community member. The
along with returning future sales proceeds move to Penn & Plymouth can intensify and The Minneapolis School Board is considering
estimated between $10 and $20 million within leverage MPS partnerships with surrounding proposals for its new headquarters building
one to three years,” he said. institutional partners such as NorthPoint and may decide on a project in the next couple
Health & Wellness to achieve even greater of months. Willard Homewood Organization
“The Urban Design Lab team will secure health outcomes for employees and will host a presentation by Bauknight’s team
these sites with $3,000,000 to cover community members,” he said. Stella at its January meeting, 6:30 pm Thursday,
operations and maintenance on the four sites Whitney-West, CEO of NorthPoint Health & January 28th at North Point’s community
upon contract signing. Value of all four Wellness says, “NorthPoint would be pleased services building at 14th & Penn N.
properties in today’s market is in the to have MPS as a neighbor and as a partner in
$10,000,000 range if sold within 12 months the fight to reduce disparities in our
and in the $16,000,000 range if disposition community.” “Locating at this site will also

Page 2