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Hall's Island Area In Northeast Minneapolis Will Soon Be An Island Once More

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) -- Some exciting new developments are in the works in northeast Minneapolis along the Mississippi River.

The Minneapolis Parks and Recreation Board on Tuesday announced construction plans to restore Hall's Island.

Back in 1966, a lumber company redeveloped the land connecting it to the shoreline. The Minneapolis Parks and Recreation Board bought the land back in 2009.

It's been more than fifty years since this plot of land north of Boom Island, was an actual island -- and what was Hall's Island, will soon return to its natural state.

"So what we're doing is recreating the island, establishing it for natural habitat as a part of the flyway zone for birds and provide access for residents of northeast Minneapolis back to the river," Superintendent of Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board Jayne Miller said.

halls island
The area by the Mississippi River that was once Hall's Island (credit: CBS)

Miller says the first phase begins next month. It includes carving a back channel to create the island, expanding the shoreline on the Mississippi and more.

"In the spring we will start putting native plantings on the island, so human access will not be permitted on the island so that that can establish itself," she said.

In all, the island will be about an acre wide.

After phase one is complete, exciting plans for northeast Minneapolis outdoor enthusiasts are in the works. Miller says they're cuurently working on funding for phase two.

"We'll eventually put bridges to the island and through the island, so that people can walk through that natural habitat," Miller said. "We'll create a sandy beach, not necessarily for swimming but for canoe and kayak access within this channel, because the channel will be very long so people can canoe and kayak in the channel between the island and riverbank."

Now there's still a lot more work that'll go into this project -- they'll have to dig out contaminated soil in the channel and replace it with natural soil to allow growth and habitat for native mussels.

he island is expected to be complete by next summer.

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