The University of Minnesota is holding a grand opening for its new urban research and outreach center Wednesday in north Minneapolis.
The facility will provide educational outreach to area residents and will also research the challenges facing urban neighborhoods.
University of Minnesota vice president Robert Jones said the center is the urban equivalent to the U of M's rural research facilities.
"We didn't have to create a new model, we could just restructure that model or transform it to serve urban communities in the same the way we've been serving rural parts of the state," Jones said.
In the past, some north Minneapolis residents have questioned the university's motives behind pursuing research in urban neighborhoods. But Jones said he thinks they've gained the trust of residents by asking what problems they want to see addressed through education and outreach.