As 2021 nears an end, it’s easy to look back on the past 12 months and remember the challenges brought on by a continuing COVID-19 pandemic and the resulting economic and political ramifications. But we would be wrong to ignore the number of resilient and forward-thinking projects that are physically and philosophically changing our community. The examples of long-term investment in our community and our residents are everywhere.
The project to relocate City Hall to the former Wells Fargo building in downtown Minot took significant steps toward becoming reality this year. The City purchased the building, and the Council approved plans for the renovation plans in November. Work on the building is scheduled to begin early in 2022, with completion anticipated approximately one year later. The new City Hall will help streamline services, create efficiencies, improve access for the general public, and bring additional activity to downtown.
A private project reshaping our community’s landscape is the Magic City Discovery Center under construction on our city’s north hill. The building continues to rise dramatically above Minot’s north skyline, but its effect on our community will be much bigger than just the size of the actual building. The center represents a strengthened commitment to the youth of Minot and the surrounding region. The Discovery Center will serve as a learning tool for residents and visitors alike for generations.
In December, voters overwhelmingly approved projects to construct Minot’s second public high school in the former Cognizant building on north hill, transform Central Campus into the city’s third middle school, and remodel Magic City Campus into a facility for grades nine through 12. While we’re seeing the end results now, this project has been in the works for years. Overcrowding issues at the middle school level and the inefficiencies of housing grades nine and 10 in one building and grades 11 and 12 in a separate building have been concerns for a long time. This project is a significant investment not only in the youth of our community, but in the future of Minot as a city. Quality education systems are among the most important factors when attracting new businesses and industries to Minot, and creating education opportunities is vital to the long-term success of any community.
Trinity Health’s new hospital under construction in southwest Minot is scheduled to be completed and open to patients in 2023. The facility will increase efficiencies, improve overall patient care, and provide health care opportunities for the residents of Minot and the surrounding area. It truly will transform health care in our region, and has already spurred commercial growth in that quadrant of Minot. The overall impact on Minot by the construction of this new state-of-the-art facility cannot be overstated.
There has been tremendous commercial development in Minot this year, both large and small. Minot welcomed several new businesses in every corner of our community, and there are expansion projects under way at Dakota Square Mall, with more in the works. Blu on Broadway, a project that combined private investments and federal funding, opened on South Broadway, providing commercial space and much-needed low-to-moderate income housing units. Recently, a developer announced plans to purchase the former Midwest Federal Savings bank with plans to repurpose it into commercial space and housing units. We can’t forget the changes at Minot’s intermodal rail facility that have opened up container shipping trade to the entire world. These dynamic projects and a host of others will help propel our community into an even more prosperous future.
And of course, the largest infrastructure project in Minot’s history continues to achieve milestones. The Mouse River Enhanced Flood Protection Project made tremendous strides in 2021, buttoning up work on multiple phases while design work continues on upcoming phases. With help from community, state, and federal partners, we’ve accomplished great things on this project, but there is much work to be done. We have consistently pledged to pursue all avenues of funding to complete this project as quickly and efficiently as possible.
These projects and others happening this year share a common theme: Progress. Minot and its numerous partners have said for years that big things were coming to our community. Those predictions are becoming reality. The results will spur not only economic growth, but will also boost our already excellent quality of life and make Minot an even better place to live and raise a family.
We’re fortunate to live in a community like Minot; we’re proud to be a growing city that retains many small-town qualities. As we move into 2022, we look forward to even more projects that will have positive impacts on our area’s economy, but will also further strengthen the relationships that make Minot such a resilient and welcoming place to live.
Sincerely, City Hall
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