HKGi provided planning and design leadership for a multidisciplinary team charged with exploring redevelopment concepts for a key parcel in downtown Chaska. The team assembled by HKGi included an architect and a real estate developer who could provide commercial and residential market conditions and feasibility expertise.
The team, including representatives from the City, key stakeholders, and current property owners, explored a variety of redevelopment scenarios and assessed each scenario for its economic feasibility and for its ability to contribute to the vision established in Chaska’s Downtown Master Plan.
A key element emphasized in the redevelopment concepts is the Paseo Connection, an attractive, safe, north-south mid-block connection that uses alleyways as premier pedestrian thoroughfares. Exploration of the redevelopment concepts for this block focused on ways to activate the Paseo with alley-facing businesses and placemaking elements.
Redevelopment of the City Square West site offers the City an outstanding opportunity to implement the Brick City Paseo concept outlined in the Downtown Master Plan. The Paseo is a strategy identified by HKGi’s planners and designers as a way to improve the pedestrian experience downtown. The Paseo concept uses mid-block street crossings and alleyways to create enhanced pedestrian corridors through the downtown. The alleyways are also envisioned to be the location for new outdoor seating and event spaces, and the City Square West site concept is designed to demonstrate how the Paseo can provide public space that serves as an amenity for both residential and retail development downtown. The interior of the development is envisioned as a unique public space that will host community events and will become a prime gathering place for downtown residents and visitors.