Neighborhoods to Watch: Change on the Horizon

pig ate my pizza by courtney perry


Home to the venerable 100-plus-years-old Hackenmueller’s Meat Market (as well as a disproportionate number of professional wrestlers, including legend Verne Gagne), Robbinsdale’s stock has risen with the Travail/Pig Ate My Pizza/Rookery triumvirate of eateries and the national attention it garners. Now the first-ring suburb, with its affordable houses and an old-fashioned neighborhood feel, is in line to be serviced by the Bottineau Transitway light-rail project connecting it to downtown Minneapolis. If it happens, expect a big boom there around 2019.

harriet brasserie by jeff johnson

Linden Hills

Compared to 50th and France, the commercial node at 44th and Sheridan has the edge in history (Harriet Brasserie inhabiting a 1914 fire station), charm (the leafy patio at Sebastian Joe’s), and quirks (free-range chickens roaming the Wild Rumpus bookstore). In fact, downtown Linden Hills likely keeps a lot of suburban-leaning Minneapolitans from defecting to Edina. Though housing demand outstrips supply, neighbors aren’t about to let new development disrupt the cozy feel Linden Hills has cultivated. After several years of battling the local residents, one potential developer gave up on his condo project and sold the former Famous Dave’s parcel to a new group that plans to pursue a dense-but-boutique mix of residential and retail. The lines outside Tilia will only get longer.

lyn 65 by tj turner


The long-ignored middle child adjacent to Minneapolis and Edina, Richfield’s prime geographic potential is finally getting its due. Last year brought a double-whammy to Lyndale Avenue with a third location for Lakewinds Food Co-op and chef-driven Lyn65 Kitchen & Bar. With Restaurant Alma alum Ben Rients at the helm, the eatery’s fried-chicken platter is reason enough to visit the suburbs. Nearby Lyndale Gardens begins construction this year and will bring more apartments and retail to the area, along with a host of lakeside amenities attached to the Richfield Lake walking path, including gardens, a splash pad, and an outdoor pizza oven, as well as a new space for the Richfield Farmers Market. And on the other side of town, Andale Taqueria & Mercado serves up traditional Mexican dishes alongside a massive Latin grocery store.

payne avenue courtesy of tongue in cheek


Over the years, St. Paul’s once-bustling East Side Payne Avenue business district declined as major employers—3M, Whirlpool, Hamm’s—left the area. For a period, the stretch’s best-known landmark was a strip club called the Payne Reliever. But today, the area’s rough image is being recast by a trio of progressive eateries inhabiting charming vintage storefronts: the Ward 6 gastropub, Cook St. Paul’s diner-fare-plus-Korean-specialties, and Tongue in Cheek’s accessible fine dining. And some real-estate watchers are pointing out the parallels between Payne-Phalen
and Northeast Minneapolis, where affordable commercial and residential space attract both artists and entrepreneurs.


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