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Mill City Museum opens 'Imagining the Mississippi: 30 Ways to Transform the Riverfront' exhibit

Inside the restored historic behemoth that is the Mill City Museum, where the Mississippi River once powered Minneapolis' flour mills, students from the University of Minnesota’s College of Design present “Imagining the Mississippi: 30 Ways to Transform the Riverfront.”

The downtown riverfront has undergone tremendous change in the last decade. Instead of a derelict area for squatters scattered with debris and chain-link fences, the area is a cultural hub with a plethora of condos, restaurants and arts amenities, many in restored industrial buildings. The exhibition, which opened Wednesday night, goes even further, with visions that include new bridges, a thermal spa, the adaptive reuse of grain silos, water-level access to the river, a swimming pool built into a lock and the reconstruction of St. Anthony Falls.

Last January, several undergraduate architecture research assistants — Daniel Carlson, Andy Cleven, Julia Hill, Kevin Lang, Michael Nickerson and Davidson Ward — began working with professor of architecture Leslie Van Duzer and U of M Mississippi River expert Patrick Nunnally to create a design book with plans, sections and photo-realistic images of 30 proposals. The exhibition highlights those proposals, and invites public comment.

“Imagining the Mississippi: 30 Ways to Transform the Riverfront.” The exhibition runs through Aug. 8. Mill City Museum, 704 S. 2nd St., Minneapolis. Free.

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