Central Corridor Streetscape Improvements – City of Saint Paul Funded
On November 25, 2009, the City Council approved a finance and spending plan for additional streetscape improvements along University Avenue and in downtown Saint Paul as part of the Central Corridor LRT project. The LRT project budget includes the cost to reconstruct the roadbed, and construct new sidewalks. However, additional improvements are needed to ensure that the LRT project meets it full potential to attract new investment and make the corridor more green and walkable. The City has also committed to providing the funding for one additional station along University Ave.
The proposed financing for these improvements includes a combination of:
- Capital improvement bonds
- Neighborhood STAR (Sales Tax Revitalization) funds
- Tax Increment Financing (TIF) from three existing TIF districts along University Avenue
- Property owner assessments
According to City policy, benefiting property owners are assessed for some portion of the cost of reconstructing commercial and residential streets. The cost to property owners will be significantly reduced by the commitment of the other funding sources. Two community informational meetings on the proposed assessments were held on Dec. 8 (downtown) and Dec. 10 (University Ave.). The public hearing on the proposed assessments will be at City Council on Jan. 6. Click here for meeting details. Links to the information presented at the Dec. 8 and 10 meetings and proposed assessment amounts for each property can be found below:
You can find more information on the finance and spending plan in the City Council resolution
approved on November 25, 2009. Subsequent budget actions specific to each financing source will need to be taken, including review and comment by the CIB Committee and STAR Board, the amendment of the individual TIF plans, and adoption of a final order and ratification of assessments. Project costs and funding sources are still being refined, and other state and federal funding sources are being sought to further reduce the City's financial commitment.
For more information on just what the proposed streetscape improvements would do to the look and feel of University Avenue and Downtown, please see the following documents depicting images of streetscapes along the Corridor with and without the improvements: