Rebuilding Greater Longfellow


Portions of the Great Longfellow community are unrecognizable due to looting and fires in South Minneapolis. We need your help to rebuild. We will rebuild a stronger and more just community. Our initial assessment finds that 31 buildings have been completely destroyed, including 3 major grocery stores, and 2 pharmacies. Beyond that at least 49 other businesses sustained significant damage. Many are locally- and minority-owned. Learn more or donate here

(Update 6/15/21)
Food Security & Basic Needs: Promoting new and existing food distribution resources in and around Greater Longfellow
• Donated $22,000 of GoFundMe funds and $3,200 from MN Association of Realtors to support the DuNord Pantry food and staffing costs. (Snelling Ave and 32nd Ave)
• Continue to use our communications channels as a way to help residents find free food sources, and other necessary resources in their community.

Public Safety & Security:
• Resident Security Lighting Program: $12,000 from GoFundMe; program will remain open until funds depleted.
• Communications and updates on available safety trainings and anti-racism workshops and resources

Rebuilding and Business Support: Promote existing businesses — especially BIPOC and immigrant-owned businesses — during the pandemic
• $25,000 from Comcast for mini grants to BIPOC Businesses 10 Grants awarded
• $15,000 from Minnesota Association of Realtors for mini grants to any businesses affected by the Pandemic 12 Grants awarded
• “Keep Calm and Carry Out” Signs helped open businesses promote takeout/delivery options throughout civil unrest and the pandemic

Coordinate with other neighborhood organizations and stakeholders in planning and rebuilding efforts.
• Ensure the City recognizes LCC and other community partners during decision making about rebuilding.
• Ensure that the community has opportunities to provide input on rebuilding efforts to LCC and government officials.

Rebuild Longfellow Project (1 Year update):
• Many businesses back open or operating out of new locations
• Minnehaha Lake Liquors to rebuild 2021-2022
• Post Office will rebuild in same location
• Pre-development funding from Met Council to Gandhi Mahal
• Efforts underway to preserve Coliseum building
• Target parking lot request for proposals (RFP) open to select developers
• US Bank property RFP open to non-profit orgs for mixed use project
• Future of 3rd Precinct still unknown
• Worked with consulting team led by Short Elliot Hendrickson (SEH)
• Conducted community survey:
– 897 total survey responses
– Translated to Spanish, Somali and Oromo to better engage communities historically underrepresented
– Worked with Alliance Housing to directly engage residents of Minnehaha and Hiawatha Commons Apartments
• Created planning document as foundation for area rebuilding efforts (Available here)
• Assembled a Steering Committee – Included residents, business owners and community organization – Diverse skills with emphasis on BIPOC representation
• LCC serving on a City recognized Leadership Coalition with Longfellow Business Association, Seward Redesign, Longfellow Rising, Tending the Soil and Lake Street Council

What LCC Has Planned Next:
• Security Lighting Grant Program for businesses
• Continued business support through advocacy and partnerships
• Racial Equity Workgroup
• Resuming committees
• Outreach and Engagement
• Community and Educational Events

(Update 2/28/2021) Longfellow Community Council (LCC) and partners recent planning efforts provide foundation to rebuilding Lake Street/Minnehaha area

LCC is pleased to announce the completion of the “Rebuild Longfellow Existing Conditions Assessment”.  The document, developed under the auspices of Longfellow Community Council (LCC), is the result of an unprecedented community partnership between LCC, Greater Longfellow community organizations, residents and businesses, and a consortium of planning and design consultants assembled and led by Short Elliott Hendrickson Inc (SEH®). The consultants brought together by SEH – including Biko Associates, Inc., Patrick Connoy and Community Design Group – offered their services to the community on a pro-bono basis with the goal of assisting in planning efforts to rebuild.

The work of the consultants was guided by LCC staff and a Project Steering Committee (PSC) made up of a diverse group of residents, community organizations and business owners. The PSC worked with the consulting team to provide comments on the Existing Conditions Assessment and promote a community survey that was taken by nearly 900 people. 

The assessment and survey results are meant to be used as a non-proprietary, freely shared platform that will serve as foundational reference to inform planning efforts that are currently ramping up and are being led by allied organizations, including Longfellow Rising, Redesign, Longfellow Business Association, Lake Street Council and others.

You can read the full Existing Conditions Assessment and Community Survey results using the links below.
Existing Conditions Assessment
Existing Conditions Assessment Appendix
Community Survey Results

LCC extends a heartful thank you to SEH and its partners, as well as our Project Steering Committee members for their excellent work and partnership. We will continue to actively support other ongoing community efforts and engage the Greater Longfellow community to support local small businesses and to create programs, projects and activities that will support the growth, safety and sustainability of our community.

(Update 8/28/2020) Longfellow Community Council (LCC) Partners with consulting firms to Rebuild Longfellow Consortium of consultants provides pro bono support to Greater Longfellow

Minneapolis, MN  August 27th – The LCC Board of Directors has agreed to an official partnership with Short Elliott Hendrickson Inc. (SEH®), Community Design Group (CDG), Biko Associates, and Patrick Connoy to assist the residents and businesses of Greater Longfellow to create a rebuild plan for the area affected by the unrest after the tragic death of George Floyd.  The consulting team has a long and successful history of working on community projects across Minneapolis. Many of the consultants have a connection to the Longfellow neighborhood, having been a part of planning and development along Lake Street in the past and the lead for the SEH team is also a Longfellow resident.

The goal is to create a new vision for equitable, sustainable and resilient redevelopment while enhancing public spaces; preserving key community assets; and rebuilding civic, commercial and residential places for the coming years. The rebuild plan will be inclusive and respectful of the urgent need for our community to become more equitable and welcoming to communities of color.  Community engagement will be at the forefront of the work to ensure that residents, businesses, and community organizations use their collective wisdom to rebuild Longfellow in a way that serves the whole community.

LCC and the consulting team are currently in the process of creating a Steering Committee and a community survey.  Stay tuned through the LCC website and Weekly Roundup for updates and community participation activities through our website at Longfellow Community Council is the citizen participation organization for the Greater Longfellow Neighborhood.

(7/6/2020) Here’s a quick neighborhood update:
• On June 13th, LCC facilitated a graffiti removal/clean up event (while respecting BLM street and plywood art and text). We had about 40-50 (pictured) neighborhood participants helping with that effort.
• Our weekly newsletter continues to inform residents about ongoing ways to donate and volunteer
• Peace Coffee & Holy Trinity Lutheran Church have both set up temporary pick up sites for food/necessities for community members in need
• Block club leaders have begun facilitating anti-racism training, to help residents understand their role in systemic racism and ways to actively work toward racial justice
• We’re continuing to share resources, events, and reading lists for those wanting to further educate themselves on white fragility, racial justice, and systemic oppression
• Residents have volunteered time and energy to implement Rebuild Longfellow to coordinate the needs of damage businesses with skilled volunteers
• Our Executive Director, Melanie Majors wrote the attached heartfelt Thank You letter to volunteers and donors, which was published in the July issue of the Longfellow Nokomis Messenger