Ramsey County History – Summer 2016: “Homes vs. Factories: The 95-Year Battle over the Future of the South Highland Park Neighborhood”
Homes vs. Factories: The 95-Year Battle over the Future of the South Highland Park Neighborhood
Author: Marc J Manderscheid
When the South Highland Park neighborhood was initially zoned in 1922, St. Paul officials designated it as a residential neighborhood made up of houses of not more than two families. Then in 1923, industrialist Henry Ford proposed building an automobile manufacturing and assembly plant in the neighborhood on a large tract of land. City leaders enthusiastically supported the Ford plan and rezoned the area as a heavy industrial district. When the Ford plant opened in May 1925, many expected further development around the Ford facility would result in the construction of an extensive industrial district. For a variety of reasons, that outcome never happened, and the industrial dream soon died. Since then, the Ford plant closed in 2011. It was subsequently demolished, and the area has been down zoned to “Mixed Use Corridors” in which housing, retailing, offices, and light industry are located.
PDF of Manderscheid article