Anpetu Was'te Cultural Arts Market

Native American Community Development Institute

Funding Received: 2012
Minneapolis, MN
Funding Period: 1 year and 5 months
April 15, 2014

Looking forward to warm days soon! (Anpetu Wa’ste from October 2013)

Spring is coming to Minneapolis! The snow is starting to melt, and the Anpetu Wa’ste Cultural Arts Marketplace site is emerging from its winter rest. Preliminary work we constructed in the fall is coming back into view. It’s exciting to see the project again and know that in a few short months we’ll be spending time outdoors in a new community space.

Work on the project continues to be behind the scenes over the winter. We are engaged in conversations about partnership opportunities, and looked for new partners. We are also continuing our work of identifying potential vendors for the Marketplace.

We presented our updated renderings and project information to one of our local neighborhood associations, the Ventura Village Neighborhood Association. We brought updated project renderings and answered questions about the project. The response was very positive, and people asked good questions about the challenges we face to ensure that the project is ultimately successful. We will continue our public engagement throughout the spring and summer as we prepare the project to launch.

Understanding the broader challenges of the pedestrian environment near our project, the Seward Neighborhood Organization and the Minneapolis Pedestrian Advisory Committee have both passed resolutions directed at Hennepin County to request time to design, and commitment to make improvements in the area. We are glad these organizations are working alongside us to make the area safer and more inviting for pedestrians. There are a variety of challenges to address, and through the input of multiple stakeholders we will be able to improve the Franklin LRT station area.

NACDI attended the recent ArtPlace Grantee Summit in Los Angeles. This was a great 3-day event that brought together creative placemakers from around the country into a conversation about our work, the field of creative placemaking (and if it is a field at all), and how to create stronger peer learning networks. The Summit itself was a great opportunity to learn from people across the country and build stronger ties to creative placemaking practitioners from here in the Twin Cities too. I was surprised during the event how strongly the crowd identified as members of the Community Development field. While not 100% of those in attendance identified as such, there was a strong showing of people who viewed their work in this way. I found this fascinating, because many of the people I interact with in the Community Development field do not think of creative placemaking specifically as part of the field.

As creative placemaking matures as a field/community of practice/movement, this will be an important point to explore. I walked away from the Summit feeling that the work was strongly connected, but that we may actually need a totally new definition of Community Development in the future. There are a variety of place-based initiatives occurring across the country that don’t fit the housing and business development framework that is currently associated with the Community Development field. Approaches like Promise Neighborhoods for education, Choice Neighborhoods, Blue Zones and community-based health approaches, and our Creative Placemaking all point to new approaches. Is the Community Development field ready for all of us? We’re coming.