Imagine Canal Park

As part of the Imagine Duluth 2035 process, the City has been collaborating with interested residents, the Canal Park Business Association, as well as many others, to consider the future of Canal Park – what we’re calling Imagine Canal Park.  As a local, statewide, and regional destination, Canal Park has grown and changed over the past 30 years. The hope for the Imagine Canal Park process is to create a plan to build upon this great success, preserving what’s worked well, enhancing areas where we see low-hanging fruit, and addressing issues where we can do better.

Following recommendations in the project's interim report, the City hosted the inaugural Cold Front February Kick-off Celebration on February 1st-4th, 2018. This free, all ages pop-up event animated a parking lot in Canal Park with winter-themed outdoor activities, vendors, and live music. Read the most recent press release here.  



In June, 2017, it was announced that Duluth had been selected as a 2017 Knight Cities Challenge winner. The focus of this grant opportunity is on Canal Park – with a project known as “Imagine Canal Park."  You can learn more about the project in the press release; we’ve also included the map that was submitted to the Knight Cities review panel, which depicts a few pop-up elements that we may try out in Canal Park as part of the project. The intent: to increase Duluth's vibrancy by re-purposing space in Canal Park with mega pop-up installations that attract and connect diverse residents from different backgrounds.

We will be:

  • Hosting extensive community engagement processes that canvas residents and neighbors about how they get to Canal Park and what they want to see/do in Canal Park.
  • Launching a series of pop-up installments in Canal Park. Different programming will be tested in different seasons. Results and data will be gathered.
  • Collecting quantitative measures and qualitative feedback to inform Imagine Duluth’s comprehensive plan update.

We want to:

  • To increase usage of Canal Park year-round.
  • To determine the best activities and programming that help to connect citizens of different backgrounds.
  • To create common pedestrian oriented gathering spaces that build social capital and connections between people.

The Imagine Canal Park process will ultimately be incorporated in the Imagine Duluth 2035 planning document. The work as part of that process continues.  Please check back regularly for updates, which will be posted here and through the Imagine Duluth Facebook page.

The interim report and the executive summary version of the report are now available. These documents contain an analysis of the data collected during the launch engagement events in September 2017, as well as suggestions for pilot projects. Click here for the interim report or click here for the executive summary

If you’re interested in learning more, please feel free to contact the City at or 218-730-5580.