During the early 20th century, the Gateway District (or Lower Loop) was the largest Skid Row in the Upper Midwest. Flophouses, missions, and bars mixed with a variety of other businesses that needed cheap rents and a central location. Between 1959 and 1963, in an effort to clean up the area, Minneapolis demolished 25 blocks, or almost 40 percent of its historic downtown--turning this part of the city into a wasteland of surface parking lots. Revisit the seedy history of the Gateway district and its unfortunate redevelopment, and learn about current proposals to return street life to this formerly bustling area.
This tour will walk about 1.5 miles; tour guide is James Eli Shiffer, author of "The King of Skid Row: John Bacich and the Twilight Years of Old Minneapolis."