In-Depth: Plans at Former Ammunition Plant Property Have Failed to Materialize Over the Years

November 16, 2018 09:53 AM

If the proposed Rice Creek Commons development in Arden Hills doesn't come to fruition, it won't be the first time plans for the property fall through.

Ramsey County Manager Ryan O'Connor informed the Arden Hills City Administrator this week that the county was "moving staff resources away from the Rice Creek Commons project."

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RELATED: Rice Creek Commons Project On Rocky Ground

It's yet another change for a piece of property that's seen its fair share twists and turns over the years.

The federal government developed the land in the early 1940s, and built the Twin Cities Army Ammunition plant.  Over the years, the facility made bullets for at least three different wars - World War II, the Korean War and the Vietnam War.

A private company occupied the site until 2005 when it closed for good.

Five years later, the Minnesota Vikings identified the land as a potential home for a new stadium, as well as its team headquarters.


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However, the deal ultimately fell through. The stadium ended up being built on the site of the old Metrodome in downtown Minneapolis and the team headquarters went to Eagan.

Ramsey County bought the property from the federal government in 2012 and demolition of the former ammunition plant's facilities began in 2014.

It took more than a year for the contaminated Superfund site to be cleaned up and cleared for residential development.

Construction of Rice Creek Commons was supposed to have started in 2017.  But, with Ramsey County and the City of Arden Hills unable to iron out their differences, development hasn't started.

Now it's up in the air if it ever will.

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Tim Vetscher

Copyright 2018 - KSTP-TV, LLC A Hubbard Broadcasting Company

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