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Transit Oriented Development

Creating walkable, mixed-use, human-centered communities

Transit oriented development (TOD) is the creation of walkable, mixed-use, human-centered communities established around high-quality transit service. TOD projects are compact and typically include reduced or shared parking, increased density, emphasis on the public realm through building orientation and site details, and enhanced pedestrian and bicycle amenities.

TOD’s more efficient use of land contributes to the preservation of open space, reduced greenhouse gas emissions, and improved air quality. Transit oriented communities see improved health outcomes due to increased rates of walking, biking, rolling, and taking transit. Transit oriented development provides expanded housing options and improves connections between housing, jobs, retail, and services, which can lead to reduced housing and transportation costs, and increased economic opportunity.

In addition, Hennepin County anticipates offering predevelopment assistance as part of the 2022 TOD program. See more information below.

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2022 application and funding timeline

The application period closed on April 21. Awards anticipated in July. Projects must use funds within 30 months of award.

Approximately $2.2 million is available. The TOD request for proposals (RFP) was released independently of the coordinated affordable housing development request for proposals.

Who can apply

Developers, nonprofits engaged in development/redevelopment, government agencies and related development authorities.

Types of projects

  • Development/redevelopment, including substantial renovation and expansions
  • New or reconstruction of comprehensive public infrastructure projects
  • Strategic property acquisition to preserve land for future transit oriented development

Related links and materials

A virtual info session was held on Thursday, March 10, and provided an overview of Transit Oriented Development (TOD) the TOD Predevelopment assistance pilot, and the Community Investment Initiative.

Program background

The Hennepin County Board of Commissioners established the transit oriented development (TOD) program in 2003 to support both redevelopment and new construction that enhances transit usage. Since the program began, Hennepin County has awarded over $47 million to 165 projects along key Hennepin County transit corridors such as Hiawatha, Central Corridor, Southwest, Bottineau, and other high frequency and express bus routes.

These investments have contributed to:

  • More than $1.3 billion in development
  • Over 13,000 new or retained housing units
  • 3,300 new or retained jobs
  • More than 2.5 million square feet of new or retained commercial and office space
  • New pedestrian and bicycle connections to transit

Predevelopment assistance

The period to request assistance closed on June 9, 2022, at 3 p.m. Those who expressed interest should have received an email confirming their submission. Staff will follow-up for additional information, if needed.

A decision by the HCHRA whether to proceed with development assistance is anticipated in August 2022. Funds will be awarded on a first-come, first-served basis to eligible developers who submitted an expression of interest form.

The Hennepin County Housing and Redevelopment Authority (HCHRA) anticipates offering a pilot initiative within the 2022 Transit Oriented Development program. The purpose of this pilot is to address barriers faced by emerging local developers in accessing capital needed for predevelopment activities. If approved and pursued by the HCHRA, eligible emerging developers will be matched with specialized predevelopment assistance through qualified third-party professionals paid for by HCHRA.

Predevelopment assistance is intended to:

  • Expand and diversify the pool of local real estate developers in Hennepin County
  • Support emerging developers, particularly those from historically marginalized groups, overcome barriers to accessing financial and knowledge capital to enter the development industry
  • Build capacity of community-based developers pursuing projects in transit-oriented communities with a history of disinvestment
  • Advance the goals of the TOD program in alignment with the County’s disparity reduction efforts

Resources available

A total value of up to $200,000 in predevelopment assistance is expected to be available.

Eligible developers can request:

  • Up to $30,000 in value for projects with site control
  • Up to $10,000 in value for projects without site control

The value awarded per eligible request will be determined by the HCHRA. Amount of predevelopment funding provided by other public or private sources, such as the Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC) or City of Minneapolis, may affect the amount provided to ensure there is no duplication of funding from other sources.

Examples of predevelopment assistance available:

  • Financial feasibility analysis/pro forma development
  • Developing preliminary architectural concepts and fit plans
  • Preliminary cost estimating
  • Entitlement
  • Acquisition due diligence


Ryan Kelley