by Commissioner Rafael Ortega
Over the past six months, Ramsey County has been working with developer AECOM to refine a vision for the Riversedge development along Kellogg Boulevard in downtown St. Paul. Riversedge is a bold and innovative project that will create jobs, revitalize our capital city’s historic riverfront and expand public access to one of Minnesota’s greatest natural resources — the Mississippi River.
The proposed $788 million development includes four waterfront towers that will provide more than 400 condo and apartment units and 168 hotel rooms, create more than 5,000 new jobs, and generate more than $15 million in property tax revenue annually. The development would also include a $5 million contribution to an affordable housing trust fund, which would be used to expand housing options in St. Paul.
One of the most innovative parts of this project is the nine acres of new public realm space, which will function as an urban park built over Shepard Road and the adjacent railroad. This will double the usable area of the site and provide a physical pedestrian connection between downtown St. Paul and the Mississippi River, which will become more accessible to residents and visitors alike with a tiered walkway from the bluff to the river, an amphitheater and bandshell overlooking the river, and bike paths that connect to regional trails.
After Ramsey County selected AECOM as the developer for the site, we asked their representatives and our staff to do significant research and due diligence to make sure that the vision they put forward for Riversedge would work in the marketplace. They have had productive conversations with neighboring property owners, the railroads, District Energy and other key downtown stakeholders. Together we are now in the process of creating technical engineering and design documents, seeking regulatory clearances and initiating public engagement activities. Construction is anticipated to begin in 2021.
Riversedge is an opportunity to develop a great civic space, create jobs, catalyze affordable housing and increase the tax base. I am confident that AECOM will be able to execute this vision and that our investment in this site will bring significant long-term returns for the entire metro area. I look forward to seeing how this project will transform our downtown and the way residents, workers and visitors connect with the Mississippi River. Keep up with the latest news on the project at RamseyRiverfrontProperties.com.