THOR Construction investing in North Minneapolis.

“I’m glad to bring our headquarters back home.”

Edgar Linares
September 14, 2018 - 7:32 pm

By Edgar Linares

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For the owner of THOR Construction, one the nation’s largest black-owned businesses, building their new headquarters in North Minneapolis is a homecoming.

“It’s being built in the northside of Minneapolis, where I was born, where I live now, I’m a product of Minneapolis,” said Richard Copeland.

Copeland, 63, started a landscaping business back in 1980 with a single shovel and a truck he likes to tell people. He took that company and built a construction business that now has annual revenue of $368 million and 250-plus employees.

The company’s new $36 million headquarters on the corner of Plymouth and Penn Avenues north will house THOR’s executive offices, while their construction equipment will remain in Fridley.

“I’m glad to bring our headquarters back home,” said Copeland.

The grand opening of THOR’s Regional Acceleration Center comes a week after a string of deadly shootings in the Twin Cities that left at least four people dead and several wounded. Some of the shootings occurring on the northside.

The shootings prompted the owner of Boom Island Brewing Company to throw in the towel, and is now looking to relocate from the 2000 block of Washington Avenue North. In addition, others business owners have expressed concerns over gun violence to the Minneapolis Regional Chamber.

While this is occurring Copeland and others at THOR hope this new 92,000 square foot office and retail space will help transform the northside. It’s part of a $100 million redevelopment project at Penn-Plymouth.

“We have gang members come here and talk about the healing of the community with each other. We have TED talks here, talking about growing the community,” said Copeland. “We look to be a beacon of hope and inspire the community for economic empowerment.”

Copeland had this to say to business owners looking to leave the area.

“Give us a chance. There is an untapped resource here. We are working with these kids to stop the violence. We’re working on both sides of the fence to mend the relationships and bring love back to the community,” he said.

Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey, Minnesota Governor Mark Dayton, Target CEO Brian Cornell and Congressman Keith Ellison where among those in attendance, along with northside boosters and community leaders.

By Edgar Linares