A state-required environmental review of the soccer stadium site and 34.5 acre superblock redevelopment was completed in 2016, in the form of an Alternative Urban Areawide Review (AUAR).
The Scoping EAW was the first step in the AUAR process. It identified development scenarios to be analyzed in the AUAR along with relevant issues to be analyzed during review and defines the level of analysis. A Draft AUAR was prepared that describes the development scenarios in detail and identifies anticipated environmental effects that would result. A transportation study identified impacts to traffic, parking, transit, bicyclists, and pedestrians. Air, noise and stormwater impacts were analyzed as well, among others. A mitigation plan to accompany the Draft AUAR was created to identify measures to avoid significant environmental effects.
The first step in this process was a Scoping Environmental Assessment Worksheet (EAW), which was available for public comment through 4 p.m. on March 23, 2016. The purpose of the comments on a Scoping EAW for an AUAR is to suggest additional development scenarios and relevant issues to be analyzed in the review. Comments may suggest additional development scenarios that include alternatives to the specific large project or projects proposed to be included in the review, including development at sites outside of the proposed geographic boundary. The comments must provide reasons why a suggested development scenario or alternative to a specific project is potentially environmentally superior to those identified in the Responsible Governmental Unit’s (RGU) order for review.
Alternative Urban Areawide Review - AUAR
The Alternative Urban Areawide Review (AUAR) analyzes environmental impacts of the redevelopment as envisioned in the Master Plan and serves as a roadmap for planners and developers as future development deals on the property are proposed. The Minnesota Environmental Quality Board (EQB) published notice of availability of the City of Saint Paul’s comprehensive environmental review of the entire 34.5 acre site at Snelling-Midway area in Saint Paul on Monday, June 6, 2016, opening the 30-day public comment period on the review, which ended on July 6, 2016.