Here at KOMA we’ve done a lot of work in the city of St. Louis Park and we think it’s a pretty great place. So we thought it was only fitting to sit down with SLP dwellers Kevin Dummer and Cindy Nagel to hear their stories of the city and get the inside scoop on what makes it such a great suburb.
What is your connection to SLP?
Kevin Dummer: I was born in St. Louis Park; in fact I grew up on the same street as Cindy currently lives on, just a stone’s throw away. I lived there until I left for college and my parents still live there.
Cindy Nagel: My husband and I moved there in 1987, about 2 years after we were married. We lived in our first home for 7 years and then moved (a whopping) 6 blocks away into our current house where we’ve now been for 24 years! Our two children grew up in SLP and we have so many fond memories of the city. We were very involved in the community through education and sports activities, so places like the rec center became a second home.
KD: I spent so much time at the rec center! I remember the Olympic size pool with the huge diving boards; I swam in it all the time. I also have many memories tied to City Hall so it’s pretty cool to have worked on that project. When I was young, I would check out video cameras from City Hall to film my mom and sister lip sinking to music for Girl Scouts fundraisers and I would go to City Hall to use their video equipment and edit the videos, then they would broadcast them on the local cable channel. That helped bring more awareness and fundraising to the Girl Scout program, which would not have been possible without the help from the City.
CD: Speaking of… storage was an important element in our design for the 1st floor of the City Hall remodel – there were closets full of old videos – I bet yours was one of those!
What makes SLP unique? Interesting things about SLP
KD: I loved growing up there. It had so many parks and trails and there were always so many events – free concerts, Christmas tree lightings, winter fairs with sledding, fireworks and kite fairs. There was always something to do that was fun for the entire family.
CN: There is a lot of really great green space. I used to spend so much time at Oak Hill Park when the kids were little. (The days before the Splash Pad existed). We had the first Trader Joes in Minnesota which is pretty cool and of course the home of Opitz – because you know how I love my shopping! From a design perspective, Excelsior on Grand is an award-winning development, and of course West End is a fun area too!
Favorite Place to get a bite to eat…
KD: I don’t eat out there much now, but when I was growing up I loved Beek’s Pizza. They went out of business and now it’s Parkway Pizza which has awesome pizza as well.
CN: I’m excited about a new restaurant that just opened, called the Block – I think that will become a much-frequented spot! But I love Rojo in the West End – if you go, get the Cadillac Margarita. It’s the best!
KD: I remember there used to be a Taco Bell that was on the creek bank, and you could stop with your boat and order tacos in the drive through. It’s Taco Bell, but still a cool feature.
KOMA has worked a lot in SLP – favorite project?
KD: For me, it’s the Rec Center entrance we worked on. It’s pretty cool to be able to work on something you spent so much time at as a kid and give back to the city you grew up in. Not everyone gets that opportunity.
CN: City Hall is a favorite of mine. It is a beautiful project and getting to work on the Council Chambers was the cherry on top. It been a great experience to have such a longstanding relationship with many people who work for the city.