History of Mississippi Crossings

Lake View of Pavilion
  • The 160-acre Mississippi Crossings area abuts the Mississippi River south of the historic Anoka-Champlin bridge and sits at the north end of the six-mile Mississippi River Recreational Pool.
  • In the mid-1800s, the Crossings was a landing area for migrating steamboats and home to the Anoka-Champlin ferry service. In the 1900s, the area blossomed into a vibrant central business district surrounded by growing neighborhoods. More recently, the Crossings has consisted of obsolete commercial structures, dilapidated apartment buildings, and vacant lots. Since 1980, the area has seen limited re-investment, declining tax base while city services have grown.
  • In 1999, a 26-member citizen task force recommended the City rejuvenate the Mississippi riverfront and old business district. Soon after, the City adopted a Redevelopment Plan that proposed a series of mixed-use and residential and commercial developments along the riverfront. Besides the historic, cultural, and geographical significance, the site offers panoramic views of the Twin Cities region.
  • While the City has since moved on from the adopted Redevelopment Plan, the Plan did lead to the acquisition of key properties in the area, including eight apartment buildings. Many of these properties were purchased during a soft real estate market at assessed market values. Eminent domain was not used in the acquisition of properties.
  • Since 2016, there has been significant investment in the Mississippi Crossings area. Below are a few projects that have been completed:
  • In 2016, the City completed a $6.5 million reconstruction of the Mill Pond Dam. The Dam received The American Council of Engineers Associations (ACEA) Grand Award for quality design and aesthetics. Besides reconstructing an unsound dam, the project removes 60 acres from the floodplain, saving dozens of homeowners and businesses from buying flood insurance.
    • In late 2017, the City began a $6.3 million clean-up and restoration of the Mill Pond. The project was funded by the State of Minnesota, the Legislative-Citizens Commission on Minnesota Resources (LCCMR), the Elm Creek Watershed and the City of Champlin. To learn more, visit the Mill Pond Restoration page. The final touches on the restoration are planned for fall of 2022.
    • In 2018, the City and MnDOT completed reconstruction of the T.H. 169 corridor from Hayden Lake Road to the Anoka-Champlin bridge.
    • In early 2019, United Properties completed construction of a $30 million, 5-story, an 85-unit senior cooperative community near the Anoka-Champlin bridge. The development is known as Applewood Pointe at Mississippi Crossings
  • In July 2019, the City entered into a development agreement with Greco to be the "master developer" of 12-acres in the heart of Mississippi Crossings. The City and Greco share a vision for this area that includes a significant residential component as well as an activation of the riverfront in the Mississippi Pointe Park area with a mix of uses. Initially, Greco plans to develop a 214-unit market rate rental housing community on 4.2-acres generally located north of T.H. 169 and south of East River Parkway. Development of the apartment community is well underway. In addition, Greco is making improvements supporting a riverfront restaurant/banquet hall and public park improvements including a public pavilion and small riverfront amphitheater. The Development Plan identifies the location of these developments.