Development update: Standard Heating & Air

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October 26, 2009 // UPDATED 9:33 am - October 27, 2009
By: Amanda Kushner
Amanda Kushner
Standard Heating & Air Conditioning unveils new home

In 2004 Standard Heating & Air Conditioning realized that they had outgrown their space. At their Lake street location, drivers had to take their trucks home at night because they didn’t have anywhere to store them, said Steve Minn, principal at Lupe Development Partners.

On Oct. 1 Standard Heating held the ribbon cutting for their new space at 130 Plymouth Ave. N.

Owners Ted and Todd Ferrara had some specific qualifications that they needed for their new space including keeping it close to the highway, in Minneapolis and close to Dunwoody. Standard Heating President Troy Gregory said the company serves the metro area and therefore wanted a central location near a neighborhood that they could serve.

Standard Heating had an interest in the space at Plymouth and 2nd, but another developer had the space, and the economics weren’t working for Standard Heating to purchase the site, which was the last of the North Washington Industrial Park parcels, Minn said.

So Standard Heating and Minn made sure the development committee was aware that if the space were to become available, they were interested.

For two years the property was tied up, and during that time both Bloomington and St. Paul offered them free land for the space.

“The city had an interest in making the property available to someone who might have had a higher likelihood of being able to move forward with a successful project,” said Kevin Carroll, principal project coordinator in the business section of CPED.

When the other developer wasn’t going to be renewed for their extensions, Standard Heating was able to act, and the plan was enlarged to 32,000 square feet. Minn said Lupe Development Partners worked on a site assembly, environmental cleanup and the city helped the project with money from the Minneapolis Industrial Land and Employment Strategy (MILES) fund, which was created to provide assistance to development or redevelopment of industrially zoned sites, Carroll said. Once Standard Heating got involved there were unanticipated expenses, and the council consented to aid Standard Heating with this fund, Carroll said.

Also the city is investigating the possibility of fixing a piece of 14th Ave North adjacent to the parcel.

Finally five brownfield clean-up grants totaling $483,607 were awarded by the Department of Employment and Economic Development, the MetCouncil and Hennepin County between 2002-–2008. Before there was a developer the city got some funds to clean-up the site, and then aided Standard Heating in applying for additional grants, Carroll said.

In total the new headquarters cost around 
$3 million, Minn said.

PRI moves into old Textile building

Public Radio International (PRI), 100 North Sixth St., who distributes “This American Life,” and “BBC World Service” and produces programming including “The World,” announced that the company is moving their headquarters to the old Textile Building at 4th street and 2nd avenue.

The building will be renamed Public Radio International.

PRI’s mission is to create content to help audiences live in the interconnected world, which means bringing to life the local, global connections in the community, said Julia Yager, vice president for Brand Management & Marketing Strategy at PRI. In their new headquarters PRI will have a first floor space where they can become more involved with the Twin Cites community and reflect the world to the community. PRI envisions a space with multimedia to allow people to interact and engage with PRI’s content. It will also be a place to hold presentations, forums and discussions about what the community wants to reflect to the world. But it was also important to PRI to remain Downtown.

“We just think of Minneapolis as our city, as our community, and we realize that there is a unique perspective that being in Minneapolis brings us and the work that we do,” she said.

20 Below Studios is the architect on the project.

“We wanted to be in a place that was more accessible to the community and allowed us to have more of a public face,” Yager said.


WAM expansion work begins

Work on the Weisman Art Museum expansion is underway.

Surveying the site began the week of Oct. 5, and crews began water line work and are taking soil samples, said spokesman Christopher James.

The $14.155 million expansion, designed by the building’s original architect, Frank Gehry, includes five new galleries, James said. Four of the galleries will display artwork from the museum’s permanent collection. A fifth gallery, funded by a gift from Target is named the Target Studio for Creative Collaboration, and the nontraditional space will showcase work from cross disciplinary collaborations among university faculty, artists and designers.

The Weisman Art Museum will remain open during construction for the next year and will close in Oct. 2010. Some programming will continue off-site during this time. The 8,100 square foot construction is expected to be complete in fall 2011, he said.


Mill District apartment project breaks ground

Mill District City Apartments will have their groundbreaking at 10 a.m. on Oct. 27 at the site on 2nd between Portland and Park avenue, said Andrea Roebker, Village Green Apartments.

A partnership with the city has allowed the $25 million project to come to fruition, she said.

“Not only are we delivering another apartment community to meet the demand, but we are delivering jobs that will also allow us to deliver more residents to Downtown Minneapolis for the local businesses there,” she said.