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Edina Backs Down From Condemning Hooten Dry Cleaning Building

The city voted to drop eminent domain proceedings after a third party offered the owners more money for their 50th and France dry cleaning building.

Soon Park at a September city council meeting. Credit: City of Edina.
Soon Park at a September city council meeting. Credit: City of Edina.
Edina has backed down from its attempt to condemn a 50th and France neighborhood dry cleaning building after a third party offered the building's owners more money then the city had put on the table.

In September, Edina invoked eminent domain for the first time in a decade, in an effort to acquire Hooten Dry Cleaning at 3944 W. 49½ St., which the city hoped to use to extend the North Parking Ramp and, possibly, as a site for a municipal liquor store.

At its city council meeting last week, Edina voted unanimously to drop eminent domain proceedings.

Soon and Jenny Park operated the dry cleaning store for more than 20 years before retiring in May. The city had been negotiating to purchase the building, valued at more than $550,000, since fall 2012, but the couple refused to sell.

The Parks' attorney, Jim Yarosh, told the Star Tribune that his clients hope to sell soon to another party and that they are happy with the council's vote.

“It’s nice to have that threat over, but is it gone forever? We don’t know,” he said. “I think we’re close, but we do not have anything signed yet.”

While the exact figures that the city and the third party offered the Parks are not available, city council members said that the finances of acquisition are no longer feasible to the city.
David F January 15, 2014 at 09:10 AM
Why isn't the amount the city offered available, this should be public record. The Edina City Council often lacks transparency.

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