Postcard circa 1974: Kummerlowe
Minneapolis-South, MN -- 250 North River Ridge Circle
AKA Burnsville

Like its sister Mansard complex, Minneapolis Airport, the South location also opened in 1973, and similarly its development and construction had progressed to the point where the project was not cancelled because of the "energy crisis" of the early 1970s. Furthermore both properties were once part of the huge McLean Motor Lodge group that was headquartered in Springfield, Missouri at the sprawling Springfield Howard Johnson's Motor Lodge complex.

Visible to motorists approaching Minneapolis on I-35W, South was nonetheless hampered by difficult access.

Slides September 1978: Donahue Collection

© Microsoft Corp

The Mansard complex offered guests 108 rooms and an indoor all-weather swimming pool. The property made the local news in March of 1979 after a "suspicious" fire broke out in one of the guest rooms causing $10,000 in damage. The site remained a franchised HJ unit until it was decommissioned in 1988.

Subsequently the Motor Lodge was rebranded as a Ramada but by the middle 2000s called itself Select Inn. In addition to the Select Inn name, the former Howard Johnson's was also called the FantaSuite Hotel or the Burnsville Inn & Suites which offered a number of "themed" guestrooms.

Photographs May 2006: Phil Edwards
After losing the Howard Johnson name, South's guest building exteriors showed that the property had suffered from ill-conceived makeovers resulting in a hodgepodge of room types.

Left: Note the twice recycled sign. Converted first to advertise the site as a Ramada Limited, the sign was heavily disguised. However it retained its Ramada red and shape with the change to Select Inn.

Near its end, the former Motor Lodge became bank owned and managed by LHR Hospitality during 2011. It was subsequently sold to Akota LLC of Dickinson, North Dakota which demolished the Mansard Manor in early 2012. The six-acre property was then scheduled to be redeveloped with a compact mid-rise motel or an office complex.


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