Webber-Camden Neighborhood Organization
October 2015 – November 2016
2016 should be remembered for challenges in housing and economic development. It is the year of the reality bite of the Natural Swimming Pool at Webber Park as residents were exposed to the benefits and the limitations of that amenity. The Webber Park Library broke ground in the spring, to be open in the spring of 2017. A new full service grocery store, PUC – New Market is planning to open about the same time on the lot adjacent to the library at 44th and Humboldt. The Hennepin County Library and the New Market will bring revitalization to Webber-Camden at 44th and Humboldt and the Victory Memorial Parkway.
2016 was also the year of continued community investment. Webber Mart opened at 44th and James to rave reviews. The City of Minneapolis announced the re-design and renovation of 42nd Avenue North that will take almost two years to complete. WCNO is working to insure 42nd Avenue receives a Pedestrian Corridor designation that will include pedestrian lighting. The 4140-46 Fremont Avenue vacant buildings are moving to a Request for Proposals to be issued in early November. This economic redevelopment will contribute to the stabilization of the 42nd and Fremont commercial node. And the MPD SOC renovations began in the old Hamilton School building at 42nd and Dupont.
Truck Extravaganza in August, was once again, a honking success and well attended. This is a much anticipated event with music, kids, honking trucks and lots of fun activities. This year the big trucks included flatbeds, a school bus, trucks and the usual impressive array of land movers and utility trucks, and the leader of the pack – a Hook and Ladder from MFD. For the second year there were no community complaints from Webber residents, only happy kids, happy Dads and happy truck drivers!
Minneapolis CPED continues infill on vacant lots of single family homes. Hennepin County is also in the mix, marketing tax forfeiture properties and vacant lots directly. Webber-Camden met with developers who were interested and lent support for private, and some subsidized developers with a goal of sale to owner occupants. The Green Homes North project from the City of Minneapolis has now ended. It will be interesting to see what takes its place.
Other Annual events: winter events in Webber Park for 2016-17 are presently in doubt while Minneapolis Parks and Recreation tries to determine the tolerance of the pond (s) for ice skating. Webber Camden partnered with Folwell on Come Home to Camden events: the Senior Spring Clean Up, the 13th Annual Community Picnic at the Victory Race and the Senor Leaf Rake. Open Streets moved to West Broadway for 2016 and the Lowry Harvest Fest, planned for August was cancelled due to storms.
2016 is the last year of a current three year contract with the city of Minneapolis that provides funding for neighborhood organizations through the Citizen Participation Program (CPP) in the Department of Neighborhood Community Relations (NCR). The program will be continued for three years beginning January 1, 2017 and will end on December 31, 2019. At this time there is no plan for funding neighborhoods beyond 2019. Webber-Camden, as well as all other neighborhood organizations must plain for their future without City support.
2017 will be a year to keep moving forward. The housing market is currently stable with new owner occupants moving into the neighborhood. Solar Panels will be installed in Webber Park and the Upper Harbor Terminal is in the early stages of Redevelopment.
Our Webber-Camden community is gifted with a wealth of resources: the new pool at Webber Park, the new Hennepin County Library at 45th and Humboldt, the promise of a new grocer at 44th and Humboldt. We have a beautiful area of the parkway with its trees and bike/walking paths running through a section of the community. Our housing stock is diverse and affordable. We are working to attract new businesses and other amenities. But our greatest resource is YOU. Each and every one of our residents has a gift of talent to share. As we continue to make this neighborhood a healthy and attractive place for families and individuals to grow and prosper, we need people willing to share their abilities, their time and their vision. Only with YOUR help can we make Webber-Camden the best it can possibly be.