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Minneapolis City Council adopts 2040 plan

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An audience member holds up a sign.
An audience member holds up a sign Wednesday, Nov. 14, 2018, during the Minneapolis City Council's public hearing on the city's 2040 comprehensive plan. The plan would promote more density in the city in an effort to create more affordable housing.
Peter Cox | MPR News

The Minneapolis City Council has approved a controversial long-range comprehensive plan.

The Minneapolis 2040 plan is the city's vision for growth over the coming decades. It includes 14 goals and nearly 100 policies designed to guide long-term growth in the city.

The plan will try to mitigate the effects of climate change and racial discrimination in part by increasing density in the city, particularly along transit corridors. Among other things, the document allows triplexes in every neighborhood,  a provision that many residents criticized. 

Mayor Jacob Frey said the plan was built on years of hard work and a great deal of public input.

"We wanted to make sure that a comprehensive plan didn't become an apprehensive one and we did want to ensure that feedback was sought throughout the city. And I do acknowledge that the process was messy along the way," he said.

About 120 people shared strong views at a final public hearing on the plan last month, many opposed the plan to allow triplex housing units in place of single-family homes.

It's the most divisive issue in the plan, and many residents raised concerns about the impact of adding housing density in neighborhoods.

City Council President Lisa Bender said adding housing near transportation corridors and improving public transportation are key components in achieving long-term goals.

"The comprehensive plan is just one tool to reach these goals of eliminating racial disparity and contributing to our local fight against climate change," said Bender.

The plan now goes to the Metropolitan Council, and also faces a legal challenge.

The group Smart Growth Minneapolis has filed lawsuit to stop the plan, on the grounds the city must conduct an environmental review before approving the plan.

A judge this week denied a temporary restraining order seeking to block the city council vote.

See a draft of the document below.

Correction (Dec. 8, 2018): An earlier version of this story included an outdated draft of the 2040 plan zoning map.