The Glendale area of prospect park
Glendale is best known for the public housing development, Glendale Townhomes, built in 1952. It's also the site of a dozen single-family homes, the green space of Luxton Park, and the Luxton Community Center. Glendale Townhomes is an exceptional example of mid-century American public housing. In the early 1950s, Aldermen Dale Stanchfield and Glen Wallace, with the support of the Prospect Park neighborhood, pushed for the creation of moderately-priced rental homes for veterans studying at the University, and their families. Its opening was celebrated by Hubert Humphrey, Mayor Eric Hoyer, and the President of the University of Minnesota.
Glendale is currently home to Southeast Asian, Somali, Native American, African American and European American families. The Neighborhood Revitalization Program (NRP), administered by the Prospect Park Association from 1992-2012, contributed significant funding to support Glendale and NRP funds made it possible to reopen Pratt, where many Glendale children attend elementary school. Glendale has 184 single-family units administered by the Minneapolis Public Housing Authority (MPHA).
Currently, Glendale Townhomes faces a serious threat to its existence. In 2015, MPHA proposed replacing Glendale Townhomes with a privately owned mixed-use high-rise development. Residents of Glendale created "Defend Glendale" to save their homes and prevent the private sale of public housing. To support Glendale residents and help save Glendale Townhomes Prospect Park Association supported the historic designation of Glendale Townhomes and in 2020 the Minneapolis Heritage Preservation Committee voted to approve Glendale's historic designation nomination. Nevertheless, as we write this update during the pandemic of 2020, the future of Glendale Townhomes is still under threat, from the politics and policies of MPHA and the Minneapolis City Council. See these links for more information.
- Glendale Townhomes: An Assessment of National Register Eligibility, Hess, Roise & Company, 2015
- Glendale Neighborhood History
- "Glendale Townhomes in Prospect Park: Proposed 13-acre Sale of Public Housing to Private Developers" - report by Prospect Park Association Glendale Committee
- Glendale Townhomes historic designation nomination application.
- MPHA Glendale Information
Luxton Park, part of the Minneapolis Parks System, is a 4.5-acre recreation area with a basketball court, community gardens, picnic areas, a soccer and softball field, wading pool and walking path. Luxton Community Center lies at the center of the park.
When Glendale Townhomes were built in 1952, the children attended Pratt School along with other Prospect Park children. When Pratt School closed (in 1982) children from Prospect Park/Glendale were bussed to over 40 different schools. Glendale was the deciding factor in reopening Pratt School in 2000. NRP funds were allocated by the Prospect Park neighborhood association to make needed improvements and to make the building accessible to people with disabilities.
Thanks to Glendale, local schools featured integrated classrooms well before government-mandated busing was instituted, and parents from Glendale and other communities collaborated on neighborhood improvement projects. A daycare was started to serve Glendale children, and it grew to become one of the city's most highly regarded childcare programs. Additionally, a community center was constructed in Prospect Field, later renamed Luxton Park, which borders Glendale, intended to serve the whole community. Leaders from the Glendale Residents Action Council, activists in Prospect Park, and East Side Neighborhood Services tirelessly advocated for these services and others. Within a few short years, Glendale was firmly rooted within the community.
Just four years after the construction of Glendale, the route proposed for Interstate 94 threatened to destroy half of the community. The Minnesota transportation department's map still had the property designated by its former identity as a gravel pit and industrial area. The Pratt School PTA and Prospect Park residents intensely lobbied for the route to be changed. Their efforts, along with pressure from the Housing and Redevelopment Authority, the University of Minnesota, and the Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board, helped reroute the project along the railroad right-of-way slightly to the south and west.
Glendale faced another serious threat to its existence in 2015 when MPHA proposed replacing Glendale Townhomes with a privately owned mixed-use high-rise development (see Glendale redevelopment Project Plan by MPHA). Residents of Glendale created "Defend Glendale" to save their homes and prevent the private sale of public housing and the "Prospect Park Association Glendale Committee" was formed.
In 2018, Prospect Park Association supported the historic designation of Glendale Townhomes. In 2020, the Minneapolis Heritage Preservation Committee voted to approve Glendale’s historic designation nomination.