ST. PAUL, Minn. (FOX 9) - There are changes coming along the Mississippi River in St. Paul as Ramsey County announced it is moving forward with a nearly $800 million project to transform the downtown area by 2022.
"The opportunity for employees to move in and around or for residents, there is a reason this site is unique beyond just the views of the river," said Ryan O'Connor, the Ramsey County Manager.
Excitement is building for the project that some call St. Paul's new front porch. It's called Riversedge, and it's a potential $788 million investment that would transform the capital's downtown.
"It will be a catalyst, iconic," said Rafael Ortega, a Ramsey County Commissioner. "You can add it to the two or three iconic buildings in St. Paul. You will show this Riversedge."
Tuesday, Ramsey County announced it is moving forward with development partner Aecom. It will sit on the site of the now-demolished Ramsey County Jail, Government Center and West Publishing buildings.
"A lot of the existing transit downtown is within a quarter mile radius, including the Green Line that already serves the site," said Brian Dusek, of Aecom. "It's already existing infrastructure."
The first phase includes two towers, an apartment building and then a potential four-star-type hotel with private condominiums.
It will also be the start of a new riverfront dream of a land bridge and public space that will connect downtown to the Riversedge.
The hope is to have the pair of towers built by 2022 with a pair of office buildings going up in the years that follow.