City Detail

Background Information

City of Farmington
County: Dakota
Population: 23632
GreenStep City category: A
Full-time equivalent city staff (approx.): 100
Participating township, county, school:

GreenStep Coordinator

Jared Johnson
City Staff
651-280-6824
City web page relating to sustainability/GreenStep activities:
GreenStep City resolution: Click here to view the file.
GreenStep City status and date: STEP 2 ( )

City Assessment Files and City Performance Metrics

City councils pass a resolution to join the GreenStep program and are recognized at Step 1. Step 2 and Step 3 recognition levels reflect completed city actions, reported and rated below with stars (1 star = good, 2 stars = better, 3 stars = best). The Assessment File below summarizes completed city actions in a short Word file. Step 4 recognition is awarded to cities who report a minimum number of core metrics for the previous calendar year. These metrics aim to show the aggregate, quantitative results of taking multiple GreenStep actions. Step 5 cities show improvement in the Step 4 metrics. See yearly data for Steps 4&5. Additional city data can be found by reviewing information on B3 Benchmarking and Regional Indicators Initiative.

Assessment File

Best Practice Actions Underway and Completed

Completed actions are denoted by stars.

Total completed actions: 50
1 star actions: 30
2 star actions: 11
3 star actions: 9

Buildings and Lighting Buildings and Lighting

Efficient Existing Public Buildings {BP no.1}

2 star - Action 1:

Enter/update building information into the MN B3 Benchmarking database, and routinely enter monthly usage data for all city-owned buildings/infrastructure that consume energy/water.

Date action report first entered:
Date of last report update:
Year action initially completed: 2024
Implementation details:
The City has enabled Xcel to automate meter data into B3 Benchmarking. We have a dedicated staff member to routinely check in on our database.
Outcome measures/metrics/money saved:
Descriptive File:
For more information contact:
Jared Johnson (City Staff) | jjohnson@farmingtonmn.gov | 651-280-6824
3 star - Action 2:

Make no/low cost indoor lighting and operational changes in city-owned/school buildings to reduce energy costs.

Date action report first entered:
Date of last report update:
Year action initially completed:
Implementation details:
The City of Farmington has implemented energy efficiencies in city buildings to reduce energy costs in multiple city buildings. These efforts will continue in the future.
Outcome measures/metrics/money saved:
• Replaced 400 watt metal halide light fixtures and bulbs with T-8 32 watt fluorescent light fixtures and bulbs in shop area of the Central Maintenance Facility reducing energy use by 50% (2.5 year payback)
• Installed occupancy sensors in all rooms at the Rambling River Center allowing the lights to turn off automatically if there are no occupants in the room
• Working with Great River Energy staff on programming the HVAC unit’s air handler to optimally power down when no occupants are in building and power back on at a more optimal time before the building is occupied
• Automatic setback thermostats in the Rambling River Center have been changed to allow for higher temperatures to occur in the building during non-use times (nights and weekends) in the cooling season and lower temperatures to occur in the building during non-use times (nights and weekends) in the heating season
• City Hall and the Rambling River Center have both been placed on the Xcel Energy System Saver program during the cooling season, allowing the buildings cooling system to be cycled on and off every 15 minutes during peak demand times

The following items have been completed related to reducing energy costs outdoors:

• Replaced metal halide light fixtures and bulbs with LED fixtures and bulbs at the RR Park tennis courts
• Replaced metal halide light fixtures and bulbs in PD parking lot with new LED fixtures and bulbs
Descriptive File:
Great River Energy
For more information contact:
David McKnight (City staff) | dmcknight@ci.farmington.mn.us | 651-280-6801

Efficient Existing Private Buildings {BP no.2}

3 star - Action 1:

Create or participate in a marketing/outreach/incentive program to promote/achieve residential energy/water use reduction and energy efficiency.

Date action report first entered:
Date of last report update:
Year action initially completed: 2022
Implementation details:
The city does extensive communication with residents regarding water conservation and our odd/even watering policy. Efforts include communication in the city newsletter, social media posts, letters, and website advertisements.

The city also has a Water Efficiency Rebate program that started in 2022. To encourage water conservation, the program is funded, in part, by a grant from the Metropolitan Council to establish a program to reduce municipal water use in both residential and commercial properties within the city. The program offers rebates to water customers who replace old, inefficient toilets, washing machines and irrigation systems with WaterSense® and Energy Star® certified appliances and equipment to help conserve water and reduce utility bills.
Outcome measures/metrics/money saved:
Descriptive File:
For more information contact:
Jared Johnson (City Staff) | jjohnson@farmingtonmn.gov | 651-280-6824
3 star - Action 5:

Conserve/protect drinking/groundwater resources by creating a water-wise landscaping ordinance/guidance, WaterSense purchasing program, or guidance on rainwater harvesting and home water softener use.

Date action report first entered:
Date of last report update:
Year action initially completed: N/A
Implementation details:
The city has an odd/even watering policy in place year-round. Addresses ending in an odd number may water on odd-numbered calendar days and vice versa for even-numbered addresses. No watering (garden sprinkling or other irrigation) is allowed between noon - 6 p.m. regardless if it’s an odd or even day. Exceptions are hand watering (hose must be attended) of plants, children’s water toys (WHEN IN USE by children), and vehicle washing. Violation of the policy can result in a fine. Homeowners are sent water conservation tips when a violation is observed by city staff. The city does frequent communication/education to residents regarding the policy.

The city has a tiered rate system for both water and sewer utilities. Commercial properties are charged more than residential properties.

The city does extensive communication with residents regarding water conservation and our odd/even watering policy. Efforts include communication in the city newsletter, social media posts, letters, and website advertisements.

The city also has a Water Efficiency Rebate program that started in 2022. To encourage water conservation, the program is funded, in part, by a grant from the Metropolitan Council to establish a program to reduce municipal water use in both residential and commercial properties within the city. The program offers rebates to water customers who replace old, inefficient toilets, washing machines and irrigation systems with WaterSense® and Energy Star® certified appliances and equipment to help conserve water and reduce utility bills.
Outcome measures/metrics/money saved:
Descriptive File:
For more information contact:
Jared Johnson (City Staff) | jjohnson@farmingtonmn.gov | 651-280-6824

Efficient Outdoor Lighting and Signals {BP no.4}

1 star - Action 2:

Purchase LEDs for all future street lighting and traffic signals.

Date action report first entered:
Date of last report update:
Year action initially completed: N/A
Implementation details:
All existing traffic signals in the City have been replaced with LEDs and all future signals and lights will be LED as well.
Outcome measures/metrics/money saved:
Descriptive File:
For more information contact:
Jared Johnson (City Staff) | jjohnson@farmingtonmn.gov | 651-280-6824
2 star - Action 6:

Relamp/improve exterior building lighting for city-owned buildings/facilities with energy efficient, Dark-Sky compliant lighting.

Date action report first entered:
Date of last report update:
Year action initially completed: N/A
Implementation details:
The city is continuously updating the lighting at its facilities by replacing old bulbs with LED's. Most exterior lighting at city facilities have been replaced with LED's and will be standard for maintenance staff to replace future lighting with LED's.
Fire Station #1 - Parking lot lighting is 100% replaced with LED's.
Fire Station #2- Exterior of building and parking lot is 100% replaced with LED's.
Police Station- Exterior of building and parking lot is 100% replaced with LED's.
Senior Center- Exterior of building 100% replaced with LED's.
Outcome measures/metrics/money saved:
Descriptive File:
For more information contact:
Jared Johnson (City Staff) | jjohnson@farmingtonmn.gov | 651-280-6824
3 star - Action 8:

Replace the city's existing traffic signal indications with LEDs.

Date action report first entered:
Date of last report update:
Year action initially completed: N/A
Implementation details:
All traffic signals in the city have been replaced with LEDs.
Outcome measures/metrics/money saved:
Descriptive File:
For more information contact:
Jared Johnson (City Staff) | jjohnson@farmingtonmn.gov | 651-280-6824

Building Redevelopment {BP no.5}

1 star - Action 1:

Adopt an historic preservation ordinance/regulations and encourage adaptive reuse.

Date action report first entered:
Date of last report update:
Year action initially completed:
Implementation details:
The heritage preservation ordinance was approved on February 16, 1999 in order to preserve buildings in our city. It's purpose was to do the following:

1. The quality of significance in history, architecture, archeology, and culture is present in buildings, sites, structures, objects and districts that possess integrity of location, design, setting, materials, workmanship, feeling, and association, and:


(a) That are associated with specific events or a pattern of events that have made a significant contribution to the broad patterns of our history; or


(b) That are associated with the lives of persons or groups significant in our past; or


(c) That embody the distinctive characteristics of a type, period, or method of construction, or that represent the work of a master builder, or that possess high artistic values, or that represent a significant and distinguishable entity those components may lack individual distinction; or


(d) That have yielded, or may be likely to yield, information important in prehistory or history.


2. The singular physical appearance, historic character or aesthetic value of an established or familiar feature of a neighborhood or community within the City.

The ordinance is explained below:
Discussion of the Heritage Preservation Commission's Duties and Powers, the designation of Heritage Landmarks; Design review of old and new buildings requesting permits; and the demolition of buildings over 50 years old.



Outcome measures/metrics/money saved:
An ordinance that requires the review of a building that is 50 years or older to be discussed before any demolition may occur. In those discussions, the determination of use, building restoration or rehabilitation is reviewed.
Descriptive File:
For more information contact:
Adam Kienberger (City staff) | akienberger@ci.farmington.mn.us | 651-280-6820
2 star - Action 3:

Plan for reuse of large-format retail buildings, or work with a local school, church or commercial building to either add-on space or repurpose space into new uses.

Date action report first entered:
Date of last report update:
Year action initially completed: 2022
Implementation details:
The city was left with a large, vacant retail building when Family Fresh closed their doors back in late 2019. This was the city's largest retail building and sits in a prime location in the downtown. The building was dated and needed significant improvements. In early 2022, the city worked with a charter school on the development process and getting necessary approvals in order to renovate the existing building with much needed upgrades and efficiency improvements. This allowed the charter school to utilize an existing building rather than building new. The charter school was able to open later that year.
Outcome measures/metrics/money saved:
Descriptive File:
For more information contact:
Jared Johnson (City Staff) | jjohnson@farmingtonmn.gov | 651-280-6824
1 star - Action 5:

Adopt development/design standards and programs that facilitate infill, redevelopment, and adaptable buildings.

Date action report first entered:
Date of last report update:
Year action initially completed:
Implementation details:
In 2011, Immanuel Dental built a building in the downtown on a lot that was vacant for over 2 years. The owner was the first to go through the City's new 30-working day commercial review process that included a process where building review, zoning, and site planning were reviewed within a 30-working day timeline. In this case, the owner was able to start earlier than expected before the winter season.
Outcome measures/metrics/money saved:
Building completed early and infill lot was built on.
Descriptive File:
For more information contact:
Adam Kienberger (City staff) | akienberger@ci.farmington.mn.us | 651-280-6820

Land Use Land Use

Comprehensive, Climate and Energy Plans {BP no.6}

1 star - Action 1:

Adopt a comprehensive plan or (for Category B & C cities) adopt a future land use plan that was adopted by the county or a regional entity.

Date action report first entered:
Date of last report update:
Year action initially completed: 2011
Implementation details:
The City updated its Comprehensive Plan for 2040 in 2019. The City is currently in the process of amending the 2040 Comprehensive Plan to reevaluate our future land use areas to be better prepared for rapid growth. This is amendment will allow the city to be proactive with development pressures rather than letting development guide the City. The amendment is scheduled to be completed in early 2024.
Outcome measures/metrics/money saved:
The 2040 Comprehensive Plan is less than 5 years old and will be amended with recommendations on future land use changes that will help the city be able to better plan and be proactive with development pressures.
Descriptive File:
For more information contact:
Jared Johnson (City Staff) | jjohnson@farmingtonmn.gov | 651-280-6824
1 star - Action 2:

Demonstrate that regulatory ordinances comply with the comprehensive plan including but not limited to having the zoning ordinance explicitly reference the comprehensive plan as the foundational document for decision making.

Date action report first entered:
Date of last report update:
Year action initially completed:
Implementation details:
The City updated its City Code to comply with the 2030 Comprehensive Plan in 2008.
Outcome measures/metrics/money saved:
The City Code is in compliance with the 2030 Comprehensive Plan.
Descriptive File:
For more information contact:
Adam Kienberger (City staff) | akienberger@ci.farmington.mn.us | 651-280-6820
2 star - Action 3:

Include requirements in comprehensive and/or other plans for intergovernmental coordination addressing regional land use and watershed / wellhead impacts, infrastructure, transportation, economic development and city/regional services.

Date action report first entered:
Date of last report update:
Year action initially completed:
Implementation details:
Intergovernmental coordination includes the following:

Transportation - Dakota County and the City of Farmington work in close coordination concerning roadways in the City. The County is involved in reviewing plats along County Roads to ensure access spacing and traffic flows.

Land Use - The City of Farmington has entered into orderly annexation agreement (Castle Rock and Empire Townships)for property adjacent to the City. Any property owner interested in applying for annexation with this area is allowed to do so without conflict with Castle Rock or Empire Townships.

Watershed impacts - The City works with the Vermillion River Watershed and the DNR to ensure that water runoff and contaminants are regulated.

Sewer and water - The City has worked with the City of Lakeville for sewer extension near Flagstaff Avenue. Sewer and water have been run to the Dakota County Fairgrounds through the City's systems.

Fire - ALF Ambulance has had years of commitment between Apple Valley, Lakeville, and Farmington to service those areas.

Health - The City of Farmington is working with Dakota County and the Health Department to discuss issues concerning the Active Living Campaign.
Outcome measures/metrics/money saved:
All of the above mentioned items make Farmington better. Looking beyond the boundaries of your city makes you feel apart of a whole community.
Descriptive File:
For more information contact:
Adam Kienberger (City staff) | akienberger@ci.farmington.mn.us | 651-280-6820
3 star - Action 4:

Include ecological provisions in the comprehensive plan that explicitly aim to minimize open space fragmentation and/or establish a growth area with expansion criteria.

Date action report first entered:
Date of last report update:
Year action initially completed: 2018
Implementation details:
One of the guiding principles in the 2040 Comprehensive Plan is to "Protect and Conserve Natural Resources" and one of the overarching goals of the plan is to "Ensure that the community’s significant natural resources are preserved, protected and enhanced as part of the community’s growth, creating connected open space corridors where feasible."

The 2040 plan includes a future land use plan that takes into consideration MUSA staging and sustainable development patterns. The land use plan reflects the large amount of land designated for parks and open space, including the Dakota County Greenway, that will help preserve and connect natural areas as the city develops. The 2040 plan also references a Natural Resources Inventory that was done in 2011 and policies that have come from that including the Woodland and Tree Preservation Ordinance.

Protection of environmentally sensitive areas during future development is a key priority for the city.
Outcome measures/metrics/money saved:
Descriptive File:
For more information contact:
Jared Johnson (City Staff) | jjohnson@farmingtonmn.gov | 651-280-6824
1 star - Action 5:

Adopt climate mitigation and/or energy independence goals and objectives in the comprehensive plan or in a separate policy document, and include transportation recommendations such as becoming an EV-ready city.

Date action report first entered:
Date of last report update:
Year action initially completed: 2018
Implementation details:
The 2040 Comprehensive Plan has a Sustainability chapter that is focused in on energy use and energy sources.

Policy 4.1 of the sustainability chapter is to follow the state energy goal guidelines of reducing greenhouse gas emissions to 20% of the city’s 2015 baseline levels by the year 2050 and to establish interim goals every 5-10 years.
Outcome measures/metrics/money saved:
Descriptive File:
For more information contact:
Jared Johnson (City Staff) | jjohnson@farmingtonmn.gov | 651-280-6824

Resilient City Growth {BP no.7}

1 star - Action 1:

Eliminate barriers and actively encourage higher density housing by including in the city zoning ordinance and zoning map:

Date action report first entered:
Date of last report update:
Year action initially completed: N/A
Implementation details:
There are several residential zoning districts that allow for densities greater than 7 units per acre:

R-2 - Low/Medium Density: Up to 7 units per acre
R-3 - Medium Density: Up to 14 units per acre
R-4 - High Density: Up to 39 units per acre
R-5 - Downtown Residential: Up to 39 units per acre
B-2 - Downtown Business: Mixed use district, no density requirements for residential units
Mixed Use Commercial/Residential District and Spruce Street Mixed Use District: Mixed use districts, no density requirements for residential units
Outcome measures/metrics/money saved:
Descriptive File:
For more information contact:
Jared Johnson (City Staff) | jjohnson@farmingtonmn.gov | 651-280-6824
1 star - Action 2:

Achieve higher density housing through at least two of the following strategies:

Date action report first entered:
Date of last report update:
Year action initially completed:
Implementation details:
2a)The B-2 downtown business district requires a minimum lot size of 5,000 sf and a lot width of 50 feet. The Riste Lot in downtown Farmington is a infill lot that contains 3,484 sf and a 40 ft lot width. This lot will require a variance when it is developed allowing a flexible lot size/ frontage for infill develoment.

2d) Accessory dwelling units are allowed in the downtown single-family residential district on lots at 6,000 sf or more.
Outcome measures/metrics/money saved:
Infill development has flexible requirements in order to have development occur on the site and accessory dwelling units provide options to homeowners.
Descriptive File:
For more information contact:
Adam Kienberger (City staff) | akienberger@ci.farmington.mn.us | 651-280-6820
1 star - Action 3:

Achieve higher intensity commercial/industrial land uses through at least one of the following strategies:

Date action report first entered:
Date of last report update:
Year action initially completed: N/A
Implementation details:
The B-2 Downtown Business District has no setback and FAR requirements. There is no lot coverage maximum as buildings can encompass the entire lot.
Outcome measures/metrics/money saved:
Descriptive File:
For more information contact:
Jared Johnson (City Staff) | jjohnson@farmingtonmn.gov | 651-280-6824

Mixed Uses {BP no.8}

1 star - Action 2:

Locate or lease a property for use as a school, city building or other government facility that has at least two of these attributes:

Date action report first entered:
Date of last report update:
Year action initially completed:
Implementation details:
2a)In 2006, the City made a conscious decision to locate the new City Hall in the existing downtown in order to facilitate downtown business prosperity and create a walkable downtown with existing single and multi-family residents on small lots.
2b)The City Hall may be accessed by residents in the originally platted downtown to walk or bike to the facility.
Outcome measures/metrics/money saved:
The City Hall location in the downtown has provided walking and biking options for residents to access City Hall.
Descriptive File:
For more information contact:
Adam Kienberger (City staff) | akienberger@ci.farmington.mn.us | 651-280-6820
2 star - Action 5:

Have a downtown zoning district that emphasizes small and destination business, entrepreneurial spaces, and allows or requires residential and residential-compatible commercial development.

Date action report first entered:
Date of last report update:
Year action initially completed: N/A
Implementation details:
The B-2 Downtown Business District identifies a variety of general commercial and higher density residential uses for the downtown area in order to expand and strengthen the downtown as the primary commercial district for the city, create a pedestrian friendly downtown, and promote the city as a cultural center. Objectives of this district are to preserve historical buildings, require high design standards, and provide a diverse mix of community oriented commercial and cultural activities that are pedestrian oriented and accessible to area residents. This district conditionally allows residential uses.

The downtown core is also part of the Downtown Commerical Overlay District that emphasizes designs standards that promote connectivity between residential and commercial spaces.
Outcome measures/metrics/money saved:
Descriptive File:
For more information contact:
Jared Johnson (City Staff) | jjohnson@farmingtonmn.gov | 651-280-6824

Efficient Highway- and Auto-Oriented Development {BP no.9}

2 star - Action 1:

Establish design goals for at least one highway/auto-oriented corridor/cluster.

Date action report first entered:
Date of last report update:
Year action initially completed: 2021
Implementation details:
In 2021, the City adopted the Highway 3 Overlay District in the zoning code as a result from the Highway 3 Corridor Small Area Plan that was done in 2019. This auto-oriented state highway corridor runs north/south through Farmington and has many land use incompatibilities and poor aesthetics. The plan aimed to help establish a unified vision for the corridor that will help guide reinvestment to improve land use combability and aesthetics.

The Highway 3 Overlay District in the zoning code establishes design standards for commercial and residential uses. The design standards are intended create a cohesive and sustainable built environment, establish architectural requirements, unify building facades, place a strong emphasis on improving the aesthetics, compatible integration between residential and commercial uses, and encourage replacement/remodel of existing architecturally incompatible buildings.
Outcome measures/metrics/money saved:
Descriptive File:
For more information contact:
Jared Johnson (City Staff) | jjohnson@farmingtonmn.gov | 651-280-6824

Design for Natural Resource Conservation {BP no.10}

1 star - Action 1:

Conduct a Natural Resource Inventory or Assessment (NRI or NRA); incorporate protection of priority natural systems or resources such as groundwater through the subdivision or development process.

Date action report first entered:
Date of last report update:
Year action initially completed:
Implementation details:
The City prepared a NRI for the community in 2010 and it was approved in 2011. The NRI incorporated a landscape ordinance to preserve trees in subdivision developments.
Outcome measures/metrics/money saved:
The NRI has provided the Parks & Recreation department the ability to plan parks that meet the standards of the NRI.
Descriptive File:
For more information contact:
Adam Kienberger (City staff) | akienberger@ci.farmington.mn.us | 651-280-6820
1 star - Action 3:

For cities within metropolitan areas, incorporate woodland best management practices addressing protection of wooded areas into zoning or development review.

Date action report first entered:
Date of last report update:
Year action initially completed:
Implementation details:
The City Code was revised on May 16, 2011 to incoporate a Woodland and Tree Preservation ordinance in order to protect trees in proposed developments.
Outcome measures/metrics/money saved:
The new ordinance will provide for the protection of stands of trees and protect large speciman trees within the development when it begins again.
Descriptive File:
For more information contact:
Adam Kienberger (City staff) | akienberger@ci.farmington.mn.us | 651-280-6820

Transportation Transportation

Mobility Options {BP no.12}

1 star - Action 1:

Increase walking, biking and transit use by one or more of the following means:

Date action report first entered:
Date of last report update:
Year action initially completed: 2019
Implementation details:
In 2019, the City completed a Bike/Ped Plan. This plan is to help address the future of the bicycle and pedestrian network, incorporate community feedback, desires and goals, and to identify best practices that will guide policy and programming improvements.

The plan looked at existing conditions in the bicycle/pedestrian network, identified high stress areas, and gathered community feedback. From this, the plan ultimately outlines system goals that will create a bicycle/pedestrian network that is safe, connected, and equitable. A network plan was created that builds off the existing trail and sidewalk network and focuses on various segments that need connectivity/safety improvements.

System recommendations and implementation strategies will help guide the City for the next 10 years when it comes to increasing the safety and use of the bicycle/pedestrian network.
Outcome measures/metrics/money saved:
Descriptive File: view file
For more information contact:
Jared Johnson (City Staff) | jjohnson@farmingtonmn.gov | 651-280-6824
1 star - Action 2:

Conduct an Active Living campaign such as a Safe Routes to School (SRTS) program.

Date action report first entered:
Date of last report update:
Year action initially completed: 2023
Implementation details:
The City has participated/actively participating in the Safe Routes to School program.

The city participated in the SRTS program for Boeckman Middle School in coordination with the Farmington School District, Dakota County, and MnDOT. The final plan includes infrastructure recommendations to help improve overall pedestrian safety and access and create a more equitable transportation system. This study was completed in July of 2023

The city is currently participating in another SRTS program for Great Oaks Academy. The plan will be developed throughout the 2023=2024 school year.
Outcome measures/metrics/money saved:
Descriptive File: view file
For more information contact:
Jared Johnson (City Staff) | jjohnson@farmingtonmn.gov | 651-280-6824
1 star - Action 5:

Implement workplace multi-modal transportation best management practices - including telework/flexwork - in city government, businesses or at a local health care provider.

Date action report first entered:
Date of last report update:
Year action initially completed: 2022
Implementation details:
The City allows employees to have a hybrid work schedule where they can work remotely several days during the week.
Outcome measures/metrics/money saved:
Descriptive File:
For more information contact:
Jared Johnson (City Staff) | jjohnson@farmingtonmn.gov | 651-280-6824

Efficient City Fleets {BP no.13}

1 star - Action 3:

Phase-in operational changes, equipment changes including electric vehicles, and no-idling practices for city or local transit fleets.

Date action report first entered:
Date of last report update:
Year action initially completed:
Implementation details:
2) The City has a monthly program monitoring and reporting fuel usage and costs.
3c) The City also has a maintenance schedule to insure that the City fleet optimizes vehicle life and fuel efficiency.
Outcome measures/metrics/money saved:
The City fleet runs more efficiently through this reporting.
Descriptive File:
For more information contact:
Adam Kienberger (City staff) | akienberger@ci.farmington.mn.us | 651-280-6820
1 star - Action 4:

Phase in bike, e-bike, foot or horseback modes for police, inspectors and other city staff.

Date action report first entered:
Date of last report update:
Year action initially completed:
Implementation details:
In 2006, the City phased in bike patrols for the police department. The patrols occur in the downtown area of the City.
Outcome measures/metrics/money saved:
The bike patrol saves fuel costs.
Descriptive File:
For more information contact:
Adam Kienberger (City staff) | akienberger@ci.farmington.mn.us | 651-280-6820

Demand-Side Travel Planning {BP no.14}

1 star - Action 1:

Reduce or eliminate parking minimums; add parking maximums; develop district parking; install meters and charge for parking at curb and city-owned lots/ramps. 

Date action report first entered:
Date of last report update:
Year action initially completed: N/A
Implementation details:
The city has no parking minimums in the B-2 Downtown Business District. The city also allows joint parking facilities in all zoning districts.
Outcome measures/metrics/money saved:
Descriptive File:
For more information contact:
Jared Johnson (City Staff) | jjohnson@farmingtonmn.gov | 651-280-6824

Environmental Management Environmental Management

Sustainable Purchasing {BP no.15}

1 star - Action 1:

Adopt a sustainable purchasing policy or administrative guidelines/practices directing that the city purchase at least:

Date action report first entered:
Date of last report update:
Year action initially completed:
Implementation details:
1a) The City only purchases Energy Star computers for staff.

1b) The City also purchases paper that contains a least 30% post-consumer recycled content.
Outcome measures/metrics/money saved:
The computers are energy efficient and paper is recycled.
Descriptive File:
For more information contact:
Adam Kienberger (City staff) | akienberger@ci.farmington.mn.us | 651-280-6820
1 star - Action 7:

Lower the environmental footprint of meetings and events in the city.

Date action report first entered:
Date of last report update:
Year action initially completed:
Implementation details:
The City of Farmington transitioned to paperless city council meetings in 2011.
Outcome measures/metrics/money saved:
The city estimates that it has eliminated over 162,000 copies being made for city council meetings over the past five years.
Descriptive File:
For more information contact:
David McKnight (City staff) | dmcknight@ci.farmington.mn.us | 651-280-6801

Community Forests and Soils {BP no.16}

1 star - Action 1:

Certify as a Tree City USA.

Date action report first entered:
Date of last report update:
Year action initially completed:
Implementation details:
The City has been a member of Tree City USA since 1990 and continues that tradition.
Outcome measures/metrics/money saved:
The City meets the qualfications for a Tree City USA distinction.
Descriptive File:
For more information contact:
Adam Kienberger (City staff) | akienberger@ci.farmington.mn.us | 651-280-6820
1 star - Action 5:

Adopt a tree preservation or native landscaping ordinance.

Date action report first entered:
Date of last report update:
Year action initially completed:
Implementation details:
The City adopted a revised landscape ordinance in 1998 to promote the addition of landscape materials in the City with tree requirments on boulevards at 1/40 ft. The ordinance also provides for screening requirements for incompatible uses.
Outcome measures/metrics/money saved:
Additional landscaping is provided in the community and the ordinance requires screening though landscaping between incompatible uses.
Descriptive File:
For more information contact:
Adam Kienberger (City staff) | akienberger@ci.farmington.mn.us | 651-280-6820

Parks and Trails {BP no.18}

1 star - Action 1:

Make improvements within your city's system of parks, offroad trails and open spaces.

Date action report first entered:
Date of last report update:
Year action initially completed:
Implementation details:
The Parks and Recreation Department manages a trail gap map that identifies trail connection needs in the City's system. The City and Dakota County recently completed a trail connection from 195th Street to CSAH 50 on the west side of Pilot Knob Road. The connection consisted of 1.77 miles of trail to fill the gap in the system. Connects with Lakeville trail system.
Outcome measures/metrics/money saved:
A trail connection from 195th St to CSAH 50 has completed a gap in the City's trail system.
Descriptive File:
For more information contact:
Adam Kienberger (City staff) | akienberger@ci.farmington.mn.us | 651-280-6820
1 star - Action 2:

Plan and budget for a network of parks, green spaces, water features and trails for areas where new development is planned.

Date action report first entered:
Date of last report update:
Year action initially completed:
Implementation details:
The Parks and Recreation Department has a an Existing and Proposed Parks, Trails, and Open Space Map that shows potential sites for parks as shown in the attached web link. The proposed parks have been budgeted.
Outcome measures/metrics/money saved:
Pre-planning of parks, trails, and open space assists the public in knowing where the next location is for those amenities.
Descriptive File:
For more information contact:
Adam Kienberger (City staff) | akienberger@ci.farmington.mn.us | 651-280-6820
3 star - Action 3:

Achieve minimum levels of city green space and maximize the percent within a ten-minute walk of community members.

Date action report first entered:
Date of last report update:
Year action initially completed:
Implementation details:
Parks are provided to residents on an average 1/2 mile to their homes. This has been established as a standard in the City's 2008 Comprehensive Plan.
Outcome measures/metrics/money saved:
Residents have close access to city parks.
Descriptive File:
For more information contact:
Adam Kienberger (City staff) | akienberger@ci.farmington.mn.us | 651-280-6820

Surface Water {BP no.19}

1 star - Action 4:

Adopt a shoreland ordinance for all river and lake shoreland areas.

Date action report first entered:
Date of last report update:
Year action initially completed:
Implementation details:
The City's Shoreland Ordinance was adopted in 2002. The DNR was part of the ordinance review and provided comments to the ordinance. The Shoreland Ordinance meets the requirements of the legislature of Minnesota by delegating responsibility to local governments of the state to regulate the subdivision, use and development of the shore lands of public waters and thus preserve and enhance the quality of surface waters, conserve the economic and natural environmental values of shore lands, and provide for the wise use of waters and related resources. The city of Farmington hereby recognizes this responsibility.
The City has a State designated trout stream - Vermillion River.
Outcome measures/metrics/money saved:
The Shoreland Ordinance meets the requirements of the legislature of Minnesota and provides for the protection of shores in the community and the enhancement of stormwater ponds.

Descriptive File:

Septic Systems {BP no.21}

2 star - Action 4:

Adopt a subsurface sewage treatment system ordinance based on the Association of Minnesota Counties' model ordinance.

Date action report first entered:
Date of last report update:
Year action initially completed: 2011
Implementation details:
The city adopts the Dakota County subsurface sewage treatment system ordinance.
Outcome measures/metrics/money saved:
Descriptive File: view file
For more information contact:
Jared Johnson (City Staff) | jjohnson@farmingtonmn.gov | 651-280-6824
3 star - Action 5:

Create a program to finance septic system upgrades.

Date action report first entered:
Date of last report update:
Year action initially completed: N/A
Implementation details:
Farmington residents, partnering with Dakota County, have several financial assistance programs to help with failing septic systems.
-Low Income Grant: Residents who meet income eligibilty requirements can apply for a low-income grant where hoemowners could be reimbursed up to 50% of the cost to replace or repair failing septic systems.

-Septic System Tax Assessment Program: Dakota County has a loan program to ease financial burden to homeowners who are upgrading a failing septic system. The loan is an assessment on the property taxes.

-Low Interest Loans: The Dakota County Soil and Water Conservation District has low interest loans available for upgrading failing septic systems.

-City Wastewater Connections: Funding is available for those with failing septic systems who meet income limits to make connections to city sewer standards.
Outcome measures/metrics/money saved:
Descriptive File:
Dakota County
For more information contact:
Jared Johnson (City Staff) | jjohnson@farmingtonmn.gov | 651-280-6824

Sustainable Consumption and Waste {BP no.22}

1 star - Action 1:

Improve city operations and procurement to prevent and reuse, recycle and compost waste from all public facilities (including libraries, parks, schools, municipal health care facilities), and minimize use of toxics and generation of hazardous waste.

Date action report first entered:
Date of last report update:
Year action initially completed: N/A
Implementation details:
By ordinance, all city facilities must:
-Ensure all trash collection containers or collection chutes are co-located within ten feet (10') from a recycling container or recycling chute to encourage recycling behavior.
-Ensure all trash, recyclables, and organics collection containers are clearly labeled or marked.
-Ensure all trash is delivered to a facility licensed or permitted to accept the waste, recyclables are delivered to a recycling facility, and organics are delivered for food recovery or to a composting facility or anaerobic digester.
-Provide solid waste abatement messaging in print or electronic form to each employee, tenant, multi-unit resident, student, volunteer, and housekeeping and custodial contractors.

The City of Farmington also provides organics collection containers in strategic areas (i.e., break rooms, kitchens, bathrooms) to prevent the addition of organic material to the landfill.
Outcome measures/metrics/money saved:
Descriptive File:
For more information contact:
Jared Johnson (City Staff) | jjohnson@farmingtonmn.gov | 651-280-6824
1 star - Action 2:

Address concerns over consumer products and packaging through encouragement/implementation of one or more of:

Date action report first entered:
Date of last report update:
Year action initially completed: N/A
Implementation details:
The City of Farmington promotes multiple education and reuse events:

-Extensive reduce/reuse, recycling, organics, and household hazardous waste education is available to residents 24/7 via the City of Farmington’s website. In conjunction with Dakota County, the city hosts an interactive website tool that allows residents to type in the item they wish to dispose of and then disposal options are shown, with reuse/donation options showing first. The city’s website also links to an interactive reuse tool that provides the locations and specialties of businesses that support reuse throughout the county, such as repair shops and thrift stores.
- The City of Farmington’s Solid Waste & Recycling Coordinator programs several educational events throughout the year that promote proper recycling, organics education, proper household hazardous waste disposal/toxicity reduction, and reduce/reuse. For example, the Solid Waste & Recycling Coordinator educated 105 people about toxicity reduction and proper hazardous waste disposal at a school educational event via a hands-on “make a greener cleaner” activity in May of 2023.
-In partnership with United Heroes League, the City of Farmington hosts a drop-off container for gently-used sports gear in the Schmitz-Maki Arena. These items are then donated to military families in need.
-The City of Farmington, in partnership with the cities of Rosemount and Hastings, holds three swap events per year. These events keep items out of the landfill and reduce consumption through reuse.
-Spring and fall Mattress/Box Spring Drop-Off & Document Shred Events allow residents to properly dispose of confidential documents and mattresses/box springs at a discounted rate. Mattresses/box springs are donated to Bridging and reused if in good condition.
-Through a partnership with Dakota County, all City of Farmington residents have the opportunity to sign up for a free organics drop-off program. The city hosts a drop-off location near the Farmington Maintenance Facility.
-Through a partnership with Dakota County programs, schools, multifamily properties, and local businesses in the City of Farmington can receive free recycling education and infrastructure.
Outcome measures/metrics/money saved:
Descriptive File:
Dakota County, United Heroes League, Bridging
For more information contact:
Jared Johnson (City Staff) | jjohnson@farmingtonmn.gov | 651-280-6824
3 star - Action 4:

Publicize, promote and use the varied businesses/services collecting and marketing used, repaired and rental consumer goods, especially electronics, in the city/county.

Date action report first entered:
Date of last report update:
Year action initially completed: N/A
Implementation details:
Extensive reduce/reuse, recycling, organics, and household hazardous waste education is available to residents 24/7 via the City of Farmington’s website. In conjunction with Dakota County, the city hosts an interactive website tool that allows residents to type in the item they wish to dispose of and then disposal options are shown, with reuse/donation options showing first. The city’s website also links to an interactive reuse tool that provides the locations and specialties of businesses that support reuse throughout the county, such as repair shops and thrift stores.

Also, the City of Farmington, in partnership with Dakota County, hosts at least one Fix-It Clinic each year. These events teach participants how to repair items, thus keeping additional material out of the landfill and reducing consumption.
Outcome measures/metrics/money saved:
Descriptive File:
Dakota County
For more information contact:
Jared Johnson (City Staff) | jjohnson@farmingtonmn.gov | 651-280-6824
3 star - Action 6:

Improve recycling services and expand to multi-unit housing and commercial businesses.

Date action report first entered:
Date of last report update:
Year action initially completed:
Implementation details:
The City owns and operates its own waste and recycling for residents. There are 30, 60 and 90 gallon waste containers available to the residents.
Outcome measures/metrics/money saved:
Allows residents to have waste collection and reduces waste through recycling program.
Descriptive File:
For more information contact:
Adam Kienberger (City staff) | akienberger@ci.farmington.mn.us | 651-280-6820
1 star - Action 7:

Improve/organize residential trash, recycling and organics collection by private and/or public operations and offer significant volume-based pricing on residential garbage and/or incentives for recycling.

Date action report first entered:
Date of last report update:
Year action initially completed:
Implementation details:
The City owns and operates its own waste and recycling for residents. There are 30, 60 and 90 gallon waste containers available to the residents. The City has a volume-based cost.
Outcome measures/metrics/money saved:
There is a waste collection system in Farmington.
Descriptive File:
For more information contact:
Adam Kienberger (City staff) | akienberger@ci.farmington.mn.us | 651-280-6820

Local Air Quality {BP no.23}

2 star - Action 2:

Reduce residential burning of wood and yard waste and eliminate ‘backyard’ trash burning.

Date action report first entered:
Date of last report update:
Year action initially completed: 2017
Implementation details:
The city has a handout regarding recreational fires on the website that outlines ordinance requirements and prohibited burning materials.

Per city ordinance, it's against the law to burn leaves, brush, and grass clippings.
Outcome measures/metrics/money saved:
Descriptive File: view file
For more information contact:
Jared Johnson (City Staff) | jjohnson@farmingtonmn.gov | 651-280-6824

Resilient Economic & Community Development Resilient Economic and Community Development

Benchmarks and Community Engagement {BP no.24}

2 star - Action 1:

Inclusive and Coordinated Decision-Making: Use a city commission or committee to lead, coordinate, report to and engage community members on the identification and equitable implementation of sustainability best practices.

Date action report first entered:
Date of last report update:
Year action initially completed:
Implementation details:
Green Steps Committee formed to report to the city council and the community on implementation of program best practices.
Outcome measures/metrics/money saved:
The city administrator formed a staff committee to perform the tasks of implementing additional best practices. The committee includes the city administrator, community development director, city engineer, parks and recreation director and municipal services director. Additional city staff members will be included as needed. The committee will report back to the city council on a regular basis so they can track the progress of becoming a Step 3 and more successful Green Steps city.
Descriptive File:
For more information contact:
David McKnight (City staff) | dmcknight@ci.farmington.mn.us | 651-280-6801

Renewable Energy {BP no.26}

1 star - Action 7:

Become a solar-ready community, including adopting ordinance/zoning language and an expedited permit process for residents and businesses to install solar energy systems.

Date action report first entered:
Date of last report update:
Year action initially completed: N/A
Implementation details:
The city allows solar systems by ordinance. Community solar gardens are a conditional use in the A-1 Agriculture district. Solar energy systems (rooftop, etc) are a permitted accessory use in the R-1, R-2, R-3, R-4, R-D residential districts. They are a conditional use in the A-1, B-1, B-2, and B-3 business districts.

Both types of solar systems have few performance standards giving residents and business owners a lot of flexibility.
Outcome measures/metrics/money saved:
Descriptive File:
For more information contact:
Jared Johnson (City Staff) | jjohnson@farmingtonmn.gov | 651-280-6824

Local Food {BP no.27}

2 star - Action 1:

Protect working landscapes - agriculture and forestry - by adopting an ordinance or incentivizing one or more of the following:

Date action report first entered:
Date of last report update:
Year action initially completed: N/A
Implementation details:
Farmington has large amounts of farmland and recognizes the importance of smart growth when it comes to development pressures. The city has an agricultural zoning district that is intended to preserve the City's agricultural uses in order to protect farms, to maintain the City's small town character and to create an urban reserve for such time when there is a need for additional urban development and public utilities may be extended. Large portions of farmland are also in the Met Council Agricultural Preserve program.
Outcome measures/metrics/money saved:
Descriptive File:
For more information contact:
Jared Johnson (City Staff) | jjohnson@farmingtonmn.gov | 651-280-6824
2 star - Action 2:

Facilitate creation of home/community gardens, chicken & bee keeping, and incorporation of food growing areas/access in multifamily and residential developments.

Date action report first entered:
Date of last report update:
Year action initially completed: 2013
Implementation details:
The city passed an urban chicken ordinance in 2013. The ordinance allowed the keeping of chickens in the R-1 Low Density Residential District. The city updated the ordinance in September of 2023 to allow the keeping of chickens on any lot with a single-family dwelling rather than a single zoning district. Residents can apply for a permit to keep up to 4 chickens given they meet certain containment requirements.
Outcome measures/metrics/money saved:
Descriptive File:
For more information contact:
Jared Johnson (City Staff) | jjohnson@farmingtonmn.gov | 651-280-6824
1 star - Action 3:

Create, assist with and promote local food production/distribution within the city:

Date action report first entered:
Date of last report update:
Year action initially completed:
Implementation details:
3a) The City has run a Farmer's Market for the past 3 years providing opportunities for residents to purchase fresh and local food. 3c) A community garden was established in 2010 and is run by the Community Education Council affiliated with the school district.
Outcome measures/metrics/money saved:
The Farmer's Market allows for the purchase of local foods grown in the area and provides a festive atmosphere for citizens. Education of growing local food is provided with the community garden.
Descriptive File:
For more information contact:
Adam Kienberger (City staff) | akienberger@ci.farmington.mn.us | 651-280-6820