Gravel Mining Area South Master Plan


Maple Grove, MN






Community Planning

Landscape Architecture

Natural Resources

Transportation Planning

Urban Design

The city of Maple Grove, MN wanted to create a master plan for the southern portion of their Gravel Mining Area (GMA South) that prepares for the eventual cessation of mining within the more than 370 acres of land, most of which is undeveloped because of the current mining operations.

WSB, in collaboration with public and private stakeholders, developed a plan based on the market conditions and priorities that are laid out in the city’s 2040 Comprehensive Plan. It promotes a vision that includes feedback from various landowners within the GMA South boundaries. The goals of the plan included creating:

  • A strong employment center
  • A place unlike other business parks
  • A showcase for high quality development
  • An effective, efficient and multi-modal transportation system
  • A balance of land uses in a variety of scales, intensities and uses that are responsive to market conditions

In order to create the plan, our planning team needed to build trust among the stakeholders invested in the success of GMA South. Our first step was to meet with landowners to understand their vision for the area and get their support in the master planning process. Consulting with local development professionals, we were able to generate the qualitative data necessary to inform the market analysis phase.

The planning team examined development conditions, trends, and vacancies in the northwest market of the metropolitan area, focusing on a variety of non-residential, non-retail building typologies suitable for GMA South and the Maple Grove’s goal of establishing a strong employment center.

Data gathering during the initial stages of the planning process included analysis of the physical characteristics of the project area. WSB’s natural resource professionals examined surface and ground water conditions. This work measured the quality of existing stormwater treatment and identified needed enhancements to support the level of development possible in GMA South.

The team then began developing the urban design of GMA South. This work explored various layouts for blocks, roads, and recreational trails that would connect the site to the rest of the City.

Consensus among all stakeholders identified a preferred concept, which our planning team refined and used to model building masses. This massing model communicates both the development possibilities and the elevated urban design of the area.

WSB’s community planners and transportation professionals collaborated to develop a road network that complimented the preferred assemblage of land uses and block design of the master plan.

Stormwater treatment ponds were sized and integrated into the preferred concept. The planning team located them to work with the recreational trail network so that those traveling by foot or bike would have a pleasant experience within project area.

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