Scott County OKs Renaissance Festival permit with focus on traffic planning

After months of back and forth, Scott County commissioners will allow the Minnesota Renaissance Festival to continue.

Officials were considering revoking the festival’s permit after nearby residents and businesses complained of traffic backups. But on Tuesday, officials unanimously approved a permit to allow the event to operate as long as it meets certain conditions.

“No one wants to shut down the Renaissance Festival,” Scott County Commissioner Jon Ulrich said during Tuesday’s meeting. “We all wanted to work together to solve the problems that are existing, and I’m thankful that we’re willing to wait. And we’ll see how it goes, but it’s always been our desire to make this work.”

Renfest operators must submit a traffic and parking plan by June 1, and it must gain the county’s approval.

Parking on the grounds will require vouchers and may be capped at as many as 7,000 vehicles, depending on how many of the county’s conditions are met. That means everyone else has to be bussed or shuttled in.

County officials say the festival can reach 30,000 visitors on peak capacity days.