The 2008 Normandale Lake District Plan (NLDP) established a vision to guide future re/development of the Normandale Lake District and identified future public infrastructure improvements in the District. The City is updating the plan to reflect recent changes in land use and new plans to improve access to I-494 from E. Bush Lake Road.
City Council held a Public Hearing on December 18, 2017 and adopted a resolution approving the Normandale Lake District Plan upon approval from the Metropolitan Council. The Normandale Lake District Plan is attached as part of the City's Comprehensive Plan and requires Metropolitan Council review.
The Normandale Lake District Plan (NLDP) established a vision to guide future re/development of the area and identify associated public infrastructure improvements. The original plan assumed significant amounts of office development in the area. To address traffic issues associated with a high concentration of office development, much of the 2008 plan focused on improvements to the intersection of Normandale Boulevard and West 84th Street. The NLDP outlined a detailed phasing schedule and funding strategy to implement the recommended public improvements (roads, urban design, and pedestrian bridge).
Since 2008, market demand for office development has significantly declined. This has led to some property owners replacing proposed office development with multi-family and/or hotel development. These land use changes alter traffic patterns as well as water and sewer demand, which directly influences the need and timing of infrastructure improvements.
In addition, a key roadway improvement – a ramp from E. Bush Lake Rd. onto west-bound I-494 – has gained broad support, significantly improving its implementation feasibility. During preparation of the 2008 NLDP, the E. Bush Lake Rd. freeway ramp was discussed as a potential means to reduce peak traffic volumes at Normandale Boulevard and West 84th St. and thus minimize the need for intersection improvements. However, due to a multitude of design and funding challenges, support for this ramp was considered to be too far into the future to address pending development needs in the district. Since 2008, key design challenges have been successfully addressed and the ramp project has gained support from agency and funding partners. In addition, traffic counts indicate that implementing this project would eliminate the need for the costly Normandale Boulevard and West 84th Street intersection improvements proposed in the 2008 NLDP.
To include the freeway ramp project in the funding strategy for NLDP, the physical boundary of the district will be amended to encompass the ramp area, which extends north of I-494. Given recently approved and pending requests for land use changes, it seemed prudent to concurrently consider the impacts of these changes and conduct a more comprehensive update to the NLDP.