Japs Olson surrounding area and creek


In 2013, MCWD worked with the Japs Olson Company, a large printing business and major employer in St. Louis Park, to develop a solution for treating the site’s stormwater after its expansion. Japs-Olson is right in the heart of the Minnehaha Creek Greenway, a series of projects undertaken by MCWD and a host of partners to rehabilitate Minnehaha Creek through its most degraded stretch in Hopkins and St. Louis Park. The District offered to let Japs-Olson send its stormwater for treatment on MCWD owned sites along the Greenway and in exchange, Japs Olson gave MCWD nearly four acres of its property along Minnehaha Creek. Japs Olson also agreed to pay for moving a pipe that sent polluted stormwater directly into Minnehaha Creek and divert it to MCWD’s new facility, providing even more treatment than required.

By working with Japs-Olson to treat stormwater and facilitate the company’s expansion, MCWD was able to convert industrialized land back to a natural landscape in a way that saves both parties money and helps each achieve their goals. Trails now run through the property linking Excelsior Boulevard to the Minnehaha Preserve Trail System and connecting Japs-Olson’s employees and community members to a valuable natural amenity.

At a Glance

  • St. Louis Park
  • Minnehaha Creek Subwatershed
  • Status: Complete
  • 2017

MCWD Staff Contact

Michael Hayman



Project Cost


Project Timeline

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Planning Phase

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Planning Phase

2015 — Japs-Olson approaches MCWD about company expansion

December 2015 — surveys conducted to determine feasibility

Winter 2016 — feasibility completed

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Design Phase

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Design Phase

January 2016 — Design phase begins

January 2017 — Final design approved

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Construction Phase

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Construction Phase

Spring 2017 — Construction begins

Summer 2017 – Construction complete

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Project completion

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Project Completion

Summer 2017 — Project completed

By the Numbers



of restored wetland and upland



of phosphorus kept out of the creek every year


New trees

shrubs, and native plants


new jobs

created by business expansion

Project Highlights

  • Stormwater treatment features to improve water quality in the creek
  • Expanded parking opportunities for Japs-Olson employees
  • Remediation of a contaminated site
  • Additional flood storage created
  • Invasive buckthorn and preventative ash tree removal
  • Pollinator habitat enhancement 
  • New access point for the Minnehaha Preserve


In 2013 the Japs Olson Company, a large printing business and major employer in St. Louis Park, let the City and MCWD know that it was planning to expand its facility into the neighboring lot, which sits along Minnehaha Creek next to the MCWD’s recently-restored Minnehaha Preserve. MCWD worked with the company to find a solution that benefited everyone.


Project Cost: $297,000

Funding for this project was provided by the Minnehaha Creek Watershed District.

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