Small business owners in Hopkins feel like they're being pushed out by proposed development |

Small business owners in Hopkins feel like they're being pushed out by proposed development

Joe Mazan
Updated: August 02, 2021 10:48 PM
Created: August 02, 2021 04:24 PM

UPDATE: The Hopkins City Council unanimously voted to approve the rezoning plan on Monday night. The council also plans to hold a work session at a later date to find ways to help the impacted businesses.

Some small business owners in Hopkins feel like they're being pushed out by a proposed new development and not being kept informed by the city.

The Hopkins City Council is expected to vote on a rezoning plan Monday night for a seven-story apartment building that would include 770 residential units and commercial space on the corner of Blake Road South and Excelsior Boulevard, which is near a future light rail station.

Scott Reinhardt, the owner of CW Healthcare, is one of 15 business owners that may be forced to move out of the strip mall.

"It was gut-wrenching," Reinhardt said. "It's going to be very difficult for all the small business owners. The good Lord is going to take care of us but it's pretty tough right now."

In a statement, the city of Hopkins said, "No one at the City of Hopkins wants to see businesses displaced and the City is committed to working with impacted business owners to understand how the City can help them stay in Hopkins if the development moves forward."

Businesses in the impacted area were first officially notified of the proposed development concept in June 2020. To date, a total of six notices have been sent to business owners regarding the project. The redevelopment of the area has been planned since 2003 when the city adopted the East End Study recommendations.

The city said all lease terms will be honored by the buyer. The terms of the leases are a private matter, and the city has limited legal authority to get between a landlord and a tenant in their private contract.

The development as proposed has many benefits to the community, the city says, such as:

  • Building at transit-supporting densities,
  • Improving connections to the LRT station from surrounding neighborhoods,
  • Cleaning an environmentally contaminated site,
  • Treating stormwater that currently goes completely untreated,
  • Providing a different housing choice in the neighborhood,
  • Significantly increasing the city, county and Hopkins school district's tax base.

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