Proposal resurfaces for Western Container building

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March 26, 2014
By: Sarah McKenzie
An illustration of a redevelopment planned for the Western Container building at 500 N. 3rd St.
Sarah McKenzie

NORTH LOOP — Developer Ned Abdul is back with a redevelopment proposal for the Western Container building.

Abdul of Swervo Development first submitted an application for the project to the city’s Heritage Preservation Commission (HPC) in 2009. It was denied by the HPC and the City Council, but Abdul appealed the decision and it made it all the way to the state’s Supreme Court, which ruled in his favor because the city took longer than the 60 days required by law to respond to his zoning application.

An earlier proposal showed plans for 20 to 24 condos in the building at 500 3rd St. N. The latest plan shows a commercial use on the first floor and office/residential spaces on the upper floors and a two-story rooftop addition. 

The proposal goes before the HPC on Tuesday, April 1 for review.

The warehouse, built in 1908 to house the Green & DeLaittre wholesale grocery firm, is part of the Minneapolis Warehouse Historic District. The building has the earliest known flat slab reinforced concrete design by engineer C.A.P. Turner in the city, according to a report prepared by the city’s Community, Planning and Economic Development department.

"Turner's Mushroom System made it possible to construct structurally sound buildings with improved fire resistance, more natural light and increased usable space — all at a lower cost," said Aaron Hanauer, a senior city planner.