Linking the past and future

Ms. Kinsey's comments at the dedication of the new Ninth District Federal Reserve Bank building, October 15, 1997.

Jean Kinsey

Published October 1, 1997  | October 1997 issue

As chair of the board of directors of the Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis, let me add my welcome to each of you and thank you for coming to celebrate the dedication and opening of our new bank building.

When I joined the board of directors almost seven years ago, the decision to construct a new building had been made, but I had the pleasure of helping to select our esteemed architect, Gyo Obata [Hellmuth, Obata & Kassabaum, St. Louis], and work with the building committee and the design team. As this site was prepared and construction began, I knew this was going to be a fine addition to the Minneapolis landscape. It is also an environment in which the officers and employees of the bank can conduct the bank's business with efficiency and pride.

I'd like to acknowledge and thank Del Johnson and Gerry Rauenhorst, who chaired the board of directors early in the building process and who laid much of the groundwork for this event tonight. Of course, other directors past and present, many of whom are here tonight, also played important roles in bringing this building to completion.

The success of the building project is due to the combined efforts of many people. Among them: the City of Minneapolis, Minneapolis Community Development Agency, Design Advisory Group, the Board of Governors in Washington, D.C., bank management who successfully directed the project—on time and under budget, consultants and contractors who worked on the project, and, of course, the architect, Gyo Obata, who has given us a building that takes full advantage of its beautiful setting and that will be a source of pride for the citizens of Minneapolis, the metro area, the Ninth Fed district and the Federal Reserve System.

While this is the Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis, it is also the headquarters for the Ninth District of the Federal Reserve System. Symbolic of that is the building's address. The bank had the opportunity to select its own street number from 1 to 100. While 9 might have been an obvious choice symbolizing the Ninth District, the building is on the even side of the street. Thus 90 Hennepin Avenue was chosen as the street address.

Also symbolic is the location along the Mississippi River on a site near the birthplace of Minneapolis. The area was shaped by commerce, lumber, agriculture, milling and shipping—still dominant industries throughout the Ninth District. While surrounded by some of the oldest buildings in the city, the bank is within sight of the gleaming skyscrapers of the central business district.

If not this evening, then in the days and years to come, I hope each of you will have a chance to enjoy the art and the landscaping in the public spaces in and around the building.

I am extremely honored to be part of this dedication. I compliment and thank each of you who helped to bring this fitting and splendid building to Minneapolis.