Update on engagement, development of Community Safety Centers

March 15, 2024

Office of Community Safety (OCS) officials say that the neighborhoods near the Lake Street and South Minneapolis Community Safety Centers will see a significant increase in community engagement and outreach over the next three months.  Community Safety Commissioner Toddrick Barnette and OCS Director of Design and Implementation Amanda Harrington added that both centers are expected to open as previously scheduled.

The concept of the community safety center is central to a community safety ecosystem - a network of organizations, services, and programs that work together to address the causes of crime and safety issues in our communities. The ultimate goal is to foster safe and thriving communities in Minneapolis.  The centers are public spaces that house these services – locations that allow for better collaboration between the government and the community.

The Lake Street Community Safety Center will be a temporary location serving E. Lake Street between 35-W and Hiawatha Avenue. This storefront space will not have a fulltime police presence and is expected to open in Summer 2024. By comparison, the South Minneapolis Community Safety Center will be a larger, permanent location opening early next year. This location at 2633 Minnehaha Avenue will include the Minneapolis Police Department’s 3rd Precinct. And because it will be a larger facility, there is the opportunity for a greater number of services available.

During engagement, the City will prioritize input from those living within the 3rd Precinct service area.  The City will also prioritize input from those most impacted by the criminal justice system.  Prior community engagement had illuminated the themes of relationship building, community safety, community investment, and healing, accountability, and reconciliation. Engagement content will focus on the social services that could be provided at each of the centers as well as other possible uses. .

Later this month and into May, OCS will increase the number of engagement events by partnering with local organizations and community groups.   OCS will also create an electronic survey and a walking interaction survey held in high traffic areas to provide information and solicit feedback. Through this variety of engagement opportunities, the City hopes that everyone will have a chance to be heard.

To stay informed on each project, visit the South Minneapolis Community Safety Center website for news on community engagement opportunities and to register for updates. A website for the temporary Lake St. center will be launched in the coming days.