Each issue the Development Tracker follows construction projects around downtown and Northeast Minneapolis
729 Washington Ave. N.
Nicollet Mall-based United Properties recently broke ground on an office, housing and retail complex that will replace one of the North Loop’s largest remaining parking lots with a 10-story building. The 385,000-square-foot complex, dubbed The Nordic, is the developer’s fifth project in the neighborhood and its largest yet. Fronting Washington Avenue North will be the 10-story office building that will be anchored by Ovative/group. On the Third Street side of the block there will be a seven-story parking garage with 400 parking stalls, ground-level retail and 57 apartments. Between the buildings, the developer will build an active public plaza with outdoor seating, winter ice curling and space for food trucks. The project is slated to open in 2019. The development team includes Greco Properties, LHB Architects, Hartman Cox and RJM Cos.
625 4th Ave. S.
Hennepin County has reached a preliminary agreement to purchase Thrivent Financial’s downtown Minneapolis headquarters, while the financial services company plans a new building across the street. The $55-million sale of the 17-story building was on the agenda of the Hennepin County Board’s Tuesday, Aug. 29 meeting and commissioners are slated to discuss it again in September. The agreement before the county also includes the $11.5-million purchase of approximately 332 of 750 parking stalls from Interstate Parking Co., which is proposing a 750-stall parking garage and residential building behind the Thrivent building.
625 4th Ave. S.
Interstate Parking Co.
Thrivent Financial plans to sell the land behind its headquarters to Interstate Parking Co., a developer that is proposing to develop the half-block site into a building that combines a parking ramp and apartments. Preliminary plans submitted to the City Planning Commission Committee of the Whole for its August meeting show a mixed-use building with 750 parking spaces and 87 apartments. The approximately seven-and-a-half-story building would replace a surface parking lot behind Thrivent’s 17-story headquarters on the block bordered by 4th and 5th avenues and 6th and 7th streets. Skyway connections would link the building to Thrivent’s pre-existing skyway.
315 7th Ave. N.
Leases begin Nov. 1 at Montage, Schafer Richardson’s luxury apartment complex that includes two former Nye’s Polonaise Room buildings. The complex on East Hennepin Avenue includes approximately 8,000 square feet of retail space, which will likely be divided for a few separate tenants, said Maureen Michalski, director of development for Schafer Richardson. The developer hasn’t disclosed any tenants yet. Rents listed online range from between $1,400 and $1,500 for a studio apartment to $7,500 for a three-bedroom penthouse unit. Steven Scott Management will manage the property.
2701 California St. NE
Spero Academy has broken ground on a new school building near 27th & California in Northeast Minneapolis. The Northeast-based public K–5 elementary charter school had previously proposed a two-story building in the Marshall Terrace neighborhood. The approximately 64,000-square-foot school will have room for 21 classrooms, a gymnasium, a cafeteria and specialty classrooms. The school plans to have it ready for the 2018–2019 academic year.
5th Street South between 11th and 15th avenues
City of Minneapolis
The City of Minneapolis has broken ground on a bicycle and pedestrian link between downtown Minneapolis and the Cedar-Riverside neighborhood. The project, named Samatar Crossing after the first Somali American to hold elected office in the city, repurposes the 5th Street Ramp to downtown from Interstate 94, which closed last year. The bridge completes a link over Interstate 35W, connecting 11th Avenue South on the downtown side to 15th Avenue South on the Cedar-Riverside side. When it’s completed next year, Samatar Crossing will feature four paths for walkers and bikers.
501 4th Ave. S.
City of Minneapolis
The City of Minneapolis now has a design and construction management team to help build a new office building kitty-corner from City Hall. The City Council approved $10.9 million in contracts with construction manager Mortenson Construction and architecture and engineering firm Meyer, Scherer & Rockcastle to build the new office building. The project would consolidate several satellite offices around downtown Minneapolis into a building of seven to 10 stories and 250,000–300,000 square feet. The city is proposing to demolish a parking ramp on the site. The city said in a release that officials have been considering a new office building since 1999. City officials expect to begin demolition next June and complete construction in 2020.
929 2nd St. NE
Catholic Eldercare has been making progress on a new senior housing community in Northeast Minneapolis. The non-profit senior housing provider has unveiled the branding for the building. Alta Vita, meaning “the high life,” will be Catholic Eldercare’s “first foray into resort-style independent living,” the company said in a statement. The five-story apartment building will have 69 independent-living units — 23 one-bedroom apartments, 22 one-bedroom units with dens, 20 two-bedroom apartments and four two-bedroom units with dens — for people age 62 and older. The building, proposed to line Broadway Street between 1st and 2nd avenues, will have 54 enclosed parking spaces and a nine-stall surface lot.
Nicollet Mall reconstruction
Nicollet Mall between Grant Street and Washington Avenue
City of Minneapolis
The City Council recently amended the city’s contracts with several companies reconstructing Nicollet Mall to account for $2.1 million in unanticipated design modifications, scope changes and additional work. The amendments update agreements the city has with Meyer Contracting, SHE, Conurbation and Wetland Habitat Restorations, which are working on the renovation of Nicollet Mall. The increased costs are part of the project’s $50-million budget, which included funds for unforeseen costs. The renovated mall is slated to be substantially completed this fall with a full completion early next year.
North Loop parking
1001 3rd St. N.
The City Council has approved an application from BC Properties — an entity related to Schafer Richardson — to vacate an alley parcel for a new parking ramp the North Loop-based developer recently proposed in the area. Schafer Richardson is planning to build a seven-story parking ramp with roughly 360 parking spaces near 3rd & 10th on the north end of the neighborhood. The proposal includes a retail space fronting 10th Avenue North. Maureen Michalski, director of development, said they expect to break ground this fall on the ramp.