Bucolic Corcoran paves way for change

  • Article by: TOM MEERSMAN , Star Tribune
  • Updated: November 13, 2012 - 11:51 PM

A farm community since the 1850s, Corcoran is the last town in Hennepin County to add sewer and water lines. Will development follow?

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cavellNov. 14, 12 7:19 AM

did we all read the story 2 weeks ago about the unused vacant developments in ramsey? ask farmer brown if he wants to pay for the new sewer line thru his property? he cant afford it. maybe the developer who buys his farm can raise the price on the lots and charge the next buyers of new 400k houses?

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west336Nov. 14, 12 7:52 AM

cavell: Ramsey is 30-35 miles from Downtown...Corcoran is 20. I've ALWAYS wondered why Corcoran wasn't more developed until I read this article, because the location and proximity to other burgeoning suburbs like Plymouth and Maple Grove make it seem ripe for development. And although I generally prefer urban infill and redevelopment over sprawl, places like Corcoran or Lake Elmo are exceptions due to their proximity to the city and its network. I'd be excited if Corcoran developed into the Twin Cities first sustainable suburb -- geared towards walkable neighborhoods and transit-oriented development.

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mattaudioNov. 14, 12 9:10 AM

Corcoran should take this opportunity to develop in a Strong Towns way, so they're not saddling the city with tens or hundreds of millions of dollars in unfunded long term liabilities like nearly every other city has done.

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cavellNov. 14, 12 9:14 AM

How do u get to work to pay for ur 400k house in Corcoran? Why u drive on the nice new wide road thru maple grove. Or work from home? Or work at the corner shop and ride ur bike? Nice ride in January. First line in story says"20 miles might as well be 200".

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viktorvaughnNov. 14, 1211:58 AM

The sprawl has already gone to far. We need to leave the farmland as farmland. Hennepin County should increase its tax base by redeveloping brown fields not by tearing up greenfields.

Fifty or so years ago, the city was abandoned and left to rust in favor of the newly developed farms of Brooklyn Center, Brooklyn Park, Crystal, and New Hope. Today, those communities are hollowed-out as folks head out to Ramsey and beyond. This needs to stop. A donut-shaped metro is ineffecient. We cannot treat communities as disposable -- use and throw-away after a mere fifty years. The urban core is redeveloping nicely these days, but the inner ring suburbs are in for real trouble if we don't contain the sprawl by stopping the heavily subsidized spread of water, sewer, and road infrastructure to corn fields.

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sharperNov. 14, 1212:27 PM

I love Corcoran and I do not want to see it developed like Maple Grove or Plymouth. Don't get me wrong, I love both of those cities as well but Corcoran is unique. It has avoided the eyesores that are cookie-cutter neighborhoods, giant box stores and shopping malls but has retained pristine farmland, marshes/wetlands, and forests. It is neither densely nor sparsly populated with a 10 minute drove to either the middle of nowhere or the middle of everything. I do not want to ruin that in the name of "progress" and "development" because it means destroying a tranquility that has quickly vanished during my lifetime in the western suburbs. The question now becomes, "how do we (corcoran) maintain what we have without taking on intrusive development while simultaneously progressing into a more updated and grander community?"

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jdubya12Nov. 14, 12 5:06 PM

I grew up in Corcoran through the 80s and 90s, I go back now to visit my folks and am so amazed and pleased at how it has remained virtually unchanged since I was a child. It is an oasis so close to blueprint suburbia and I really hope it remains unchanged. The idea of development to raise property value means one thing. The many community farmers and property owners can no longer afford the taxes for their land while simultaneously becoming enticed to sell...the result is Maple Grove. Which is gross. Mayor Larkin would have never approved of this sort of 'city planning'. Local contruction man Greg Ebert has a lot to gain from this sewer line going in.

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