The City of Northfield, on the edge of the Twin Cities Metropolitan Area, is surrounded mostly by farm fields. An historic downtown and two successful private colleges help create a unique identity for this community of 16,500 people. But growth pressures, including rapid housing development and annexation issues, pressures for highway expansions and pressures to develop larger scale commercial uses on the City’s edge, threaten to change that identity in ways that are undesirable to Northfield's residents. In 1999, the City hired Hoisington Koegler Group to update its comprehensive plan and provide alternative solutions to address these pressures.
Utilizing an extensive public process, HKGi helped the citizens achieve a consensus on community vision, growth direction and land use patterns. Building on the community's vision, the plan directs the attention of the development community to Northfield's strongest assets,