City split on Dinkytown demolitions

A developer and a neighborhood are split on what’s best for Dinkytown, and so is the city.

The Minneapolis City Council Zoning and Planning Committee sanctioned demolition Thursday for two Dinkytown buildings that stand where Doran Companies hopes to build a hotel. But for the third contentious building – housing Mesa Pizza and Camdi Restaurant – the committee voted to protect it, leaving the hotel project in limbo.

“The debate today isn’t on the merits of a hotel proposal per se,” Minneapolis Assistant Attorney Erik Nilsson said. “It’s on the merits of these three individual properties [being historic resources].”

Last month, the Minneapolis Heritage Preservation Commission voted to protect all three of those commercial buildings, the other two located at 1315 Fourth Street SE and 410 13th Ave. SE.

The full City Council will make the final decision for Doran Companies’ demolition permits on Feb. 21. The developer plans to build a 125- to 140-room, mixed-use hotel on the land, which is also home to Dinkytown Tattoo Shop, University LifeCare Center and Publika Coffee and Tea Union.

An ongoing study will determine whether to designate Dinkytown as a historical district. Ward 7 Councilwoman Lisa Goodman said if professionals decide that Dinkytown is not historic that Doran Companies will “practically” be given automatic authorization to demolish the properties.

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