Community Planning & Economic Development

Planning and Zoning
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250 S. 4th St., Suite 300
Minneapolis, MN 55415
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The Minneapolis Plan for Sustainable Growth

The Minneapolis Plan for Sustainable Growth

  • Landscaping is encouraged in order to complement the scale of the site and its surroundings, enhanced the built environment, create and define public and private spaces, buffer and screen, incorporate crime prevention principles, and provide shade, aesthetic appeal, and environmental benefits. (10.6.1 p. 10-8)
  • Provide appropriate physical transition and separation using green space, setbacks, or orientation, stepped down height, or ornamental fencing to improve the compatibility between higher density and lower density residential uses. (10.6.3 p. 10-8)
  • Develop public plaza standards that give specific guidance on preferred design and maintenance of seating, lighting, landscaping and other amenities utilizing climate sensitive design principles. (10.14.6 p. 10-19)
  • Integrate placement of street furniture and fixtures, including landscaping and lighting, to serve a function and not obstruct pedestrian pathways and pedestrian flows. (10.16.3 p. 10-20)
  • Employ pedestrian-friendly features along streets, including street trees and landscaped boulevards that add interest and beauty while also managing storm water, appropriate lane widths, raised intersections, and high-visibility crosswalks. (10.16.4 p. 10-21)
  • Landscaped areas should include plant and tree types that address ecological function, including the interception and filtration of stormwater, reduction of the urban heat island effect, and preservation and restoration of natural amenities. (10.19.3 p. 10-26)
  • Landscaped areas should be maintained in accordance with Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design (CPTED) principles, to allow views into and out of the site, to preserve view corridors and to maintain sight lines at vehicular and pedestrian intersections. (10.19.4 p. 10-26)
  • Landscaping plans should be designed to facilitate future maintenance including the consideration of irrigation systems, drought and salt-resistant species, ongoing performance of storm water treatment practices, snow storage, access to sun, proximity to buildings, paved surfaces and overhead utilities. (10.19.5 p. 10-26)
  • Boulevard landscaping and improvements, in accordance with applicable city polices, are encouraged. (10.19.7 p. 10-26)

Downtown East / North Loop Master Plan

Downtown East / North Loop Master Plan

  • Sidewalks should be built to a minimum width of 12 feet to promote a comfortable scale and to create opportunities to enhance sidewalk activity. In locations where plantings or sidewalk cafes are intended, a minimum sidewalk width of 18 feet should be maintained. A minimum width of 10 feet should be adopted for zones of “pedestrian-clear” space. (68)
  • Design public spaces and private plazas to encourage their use and to place a strong emphasis on the creation of “green” in these new spaces. Open spaces should connect directly to city streets and they should be well-integrated into the public domain. (68)
  • Wherever possible, establish continuous zones on the inner or outer edges of downtown sidewalks for street furnishings, planters, public art, and other amenities. Streetscape treatments should be incorporated into the length of all Primary Pedestrian Movement Corridors to form consistent connections between significant destinations and features. (72)
  • Extensive tree planting should be promoted in all public and private development projects throughout the Project Area. (72)
  • Use trees for their aesthetic and ecological benefits: improvement of air quality, reduction of storm water runoff, cooling in the summertime, and the buffering of winter winds. (72, 76)
  • Plant deciduous trees rather than coniferous trees, for reasons of safety and shade; consider the use of “Tivoli” string lighting on key streets, vest pocket parks, and in “orchard parking lots.” (76)
  • Consider the form of the space that will be created by trees. Use them to create “urban rooms,” so that the combination of trees and buildings will help to create special places for people to interact. (76)
  • Establish a more welcoming entry to the district and to Downtown by replacing the concrete j-barriers and chain link fence that currently divide South 5th Street and South 6th Street along the south side of the Metrodome. Create a new boulevard that combines both roadways, incorporates new raised and planted medians, and builds on the existing tree canopy/streetscape currently in place on the south side of the Metrodome. (80)

North Loop Small Area Plan

North Loop Small Area Plan

  • Enhance the pedestrian and bicycle experience on Glenwood Avenue by incorporating bike lanes, on street parking, and street plantings where possible.


Zoning Code: Plaza Standards

Zoning Code: Plaza Standards

535.810. – Development standards for all permitted plazas.

(4) Aerial obstructions. Plazas shall be unobstructed to the sky except for seating, arbors, trellises, kiosks, lighting, water features, public art and landscaping. Up to thirty (30) percent of the plaza area may include umbrellas, awnings or an arcade.

(8) Plantings.
a. Plazas shall provide a minimum of one (1) tree for each one thousand (1,000) square feet of plaza area. If proposed as part of a project that has a general landscaping requirement, trees located in the plaza shall contribute toward compliance with the general landscaping requirement.
b. A landscaped area equivalent to ten (10) percent of the total plaza area may be provided in lieu of trees.

Landscape and Screening

Permit Required to Plant

PB10-1 Parks and Recreation Board Codes of Ordinance- Permit required to plant

  • No person shall plant any tree within the limits of any parkway or street of the city without having first obtained a permit from the general superintendent of parks. (Code 1960, As Amend., § 1020.010) (NEW TAB) Suitable Planting Conditions

Suitable Planting Conditions

PB10-4 Parks and Recreation Board Codes of Ordinance- Suitable planting conditions

  • No permit for planting of such trees shall be given where the clear space between the curb and sidewalk is less than three (3) feet. Neither shall a permit be given where the soil is too poor to insure the growth of the trees unless the applicant or the owner agrees to excavate a suitable hole of not less than fifty-four (54) cubic feet and to replace the material removed with suitable good loam. (Code 1960, As Amend., § 1020.040)


PB10-5 Parks and Recreation Board Codes of Ordinance- Dimensions

  • No such tree shall be planted measuring less than two (2) inches in diameter of trunk one foot above ground. The trunk of each tree shall be without branches eight (8) feet from the ground and the lowest branch shall not be over nine and one-half (9½) feet from the ground. (Code 1960, As Amend., § 1020.050)

Space for Trees

PB10-11 Parks and Recreation Board Codes of Ordinance- Space for trees

  • No paving of any description shall be laid or maintained by anyone between sidewalk and curb which will cut off the air and water from any tree. (Code 1960, As Amend., § 1020.130) 

Last updated Jan 30, 2019



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