Each issue the Development Tracker follows construction projects around downtown and Northeast Minneapolis.
116 E. Hennepin Ave.
Schafer Richardson has closed on the acquisition of the Nye’s Polonaise Room site and has already begun work to turn it into a six-story apartment complex called Montage. Maureen Michalski, the North Loop-based developer’s director of development, said in an email that they closed on the $1.9 million land sale on July 29. The 72-unit project will preserve some of the Nicollet Island-East Bank landmark’s buildings while adding new construction and infill near Hennepin Avenue and Lourdes Place. Schafer Richardson has been working to develop the site for about a year-and-a-half and had to scrap earlier plans for a 29-story apartment tower. The project will have a roughly 14-month construction phase.
315 1st Ave. NE
Lennar Multifamily Communities
Though Lennar Multifamily Communities has already started work on the Superior Plating site in Northeast Minneapolis, the developer is planning a formal groundbreaking ceremony on Aug. 25. The milestone comes more than two years since the demolition of the factory along University Avenue. Lennar is building NordHaus, a 280-unit apartment complex with a 20-story tower and low-rise podium. Once complete, the project will feature more than 22,000 square feet of retail space.
608 Central Ave. NE
A project to replace a White Castle and Holiday gas station in Northeast Minneapolis garnered the approval of the City Planning Commission Aug. 1 — via a 3-1 vote — despite criticism from commissioners and community members. Commission President Matthew Brown called the project “somewhat underwhelming” for the area that’s seeing increased interest from developers, businesses and new residents. The companies are proposing to demolish their existing buildings, in addition to two other low-rise buildings on the site at Central & 7th, and build a new 2,865-square-foot White Castle restaurant with a patio and a nearly 6,000-square-foot Holiday store. It also features a rain garden, a new sidewalk and landscaping. Several residents spoke against the project, though the Marcy-Holmes Neighborhood Association supported it after working with the development team.
205 Park Ave. S.
City of Minneapolis
The Downtown Minneapolis Neighborhood Association has thrown its support behind one of two proposals for a city-owned parcel near U.S. Bank Stadium. Earlier this summer, the city released the names of the two developers that offered proposals, Sherman Associates and Grand Real Estate Advisors. The local neighborhood group voted to recommend Grand Real Estate Advisors, which is planning to build an approximately 50-unit residential building with retail space fronting Washington Avenue. The other proposal features a six-story building with 115 units — including some affordable — and restaurant and bakery concepts from restaurateur Kim Bartmann.
CHDC workforce housing
815-827 7th St. S.
The City Planning Commission has approved plans from First Covenant Church, Ryan Companies and Community Housing Development Corp. (CHDC) to build a six-story affordable housing project on a downtown surface parking lot near U.S. Bank Stadium. The development team’s latest plans call for a building with 159 units affordable housing and 12,400 square feet of commercial space along 6th Street South. Tony Barranco, Ryan’s vice president of development, told The Journal earlier this summer the church has done the preliminary work for a land swap with Hubert’s Café and Sports Bar, which will give it control of the entire block. The proposed project would have 131 underground stalls for paid commercial parking and 48 surface spots for accessory parking for the church and retail tenants.
900 Hennepin Ave.
Hennepin Theatre Trust
The Hennepin Theatre Trust is moving closer to its historic theaters by relocating its offices to the former Solera building at Hennepin & 9th in downtown Minneapolis. The nonprofit, which owns the Orpheum, Pantages and State theaters, has filed plans to buy and renovate the three-story building into a donor lounge, offices and educational space. The 31,000-square-foot building will also see a rooftop lounge and classroom. The Trust asked the City of Minneapolis for a $2.8 million loan and a $250,000 grant for the approximately $3.3 million project, which will also see the nonprofit putting in its own $250,000. The City Council approved the loan and grant on Aug. 5.
740 Portland Ave. S.
Residents are moving in to the Portland Tower in the Elliot Park neighborhood. The new 17-story condominium tower is the latest from prolific downtown Minneapolis developer Jim Stanton of Shamrock Companies. A staff person with the sales team told The Journal in July that about half of the 112 units have been sold so far. Stanton is already at work with his next project, the approximately 374-unit Legacy condo building. That development is being proposed for the east side of downtown Minneapolis at the corner of 2nd Street and 13th Avenue near the Mill District.
801 Marquette Ave.
Franklin Street Properties
Franklin Street Properties has released more details on its plans for the TCF Bank building at Marquette & 8th in downtown Minneapolis. The Massachusetts-based real estate investment firm told investors that interior demolition and construction work is expected to begin during the third quarter (July-September). During that time, it also anticipates launching a marketing campaign with CBRE, which is handling leasing. The firm said it expects project, which would result in about 120,000 rentable square feet, to run between $15 million and $20 million with leasing expenses. Rents would be approximately $15 to $18 per square foot. Last month, Franklin Street Properties purchased the Plaza Seven building for $82 million.
1001 Marquette Ave. S.
Walton Street Capital
Maryland-based DiamondRock Hospitality Company announced last month that it has sold the 821-room Hilton Minneapolis — the state’s largest hotel — for $143 million. The real estate investment trust paid a total of $155.5 million for the property back in 2010. The 25-story hotel, built in 1992, also has 77,000 square feet of meeting space. The buyer was Walton Street Capital of Chicago.
628 University Ave. SE
Solhem Companies has sold its Coze Flats apartment building in the Marcy-Holmes neighborhood for $9.4 million. CBRE Multifamily, which announced the transaction, arranged the sale of the 48-unit apartment building near the University of Minnesota. Coze Flats is known for its smaller units, known as micro units, that start at about 400 square feet and average 469 square feet. The building was 96 percent occupied at the time of sale. The purchase prices works out to $419 per rentable square foot.