Bryn Mawr CenturyLink site may hold office space, senior, affordable housing

Southwest Journal by Michelle Bruch

Two developers are teaming up to redevelop the former CenturyLink office site at 2800 N. Wayzata Blvd. They envision new office tenants in the existing CenturyLink building, perhaps flanked by 100 units of market-rate senior housing on the east side and 150 units of affordable family housing on the west side. Developer Ned Abdul of Swervo Development (behind the downtown Armory renovation) would handle the office development. Steve Minn of Lupe Development (behind the Eat Street Flats) would handle the residential development.

Although Lupe has suggested heights of three-five stories, Minn said he wants neighborhood input.

The neighborhood association is co-hosting a design charrette on Tuesday, May 22, where several design concepts will be presented.

“I’m really focused on not making any presumptions about what will be there so the neighborhood has a chance to weigh in and look at the options and give us some feedback,” Minn said. “…I really want neighborhood buy-in on this.”

Read the full article here.

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Snelling Yards housing concept gets bigger

Lupe Development, The Wall Cos. and Ecumen are boosting the size of the two-building apartment complex, at 3601 44th St. E. in Minneapolis, by 48 units to 251. The developers are planning a $58 million project consisting of a 121-unit affordable apartment building and a 130-unit affordable, 55-plus age-restricted building, according to a city staff report.

Read more.

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Experts Forum: What’s next in affordable housing?

The rental market in the Twin Cities has been at historically tight levels lately. What that means for lower income families is that the market is almost impossibly tight.

What can be done to make more and better housing available to those who need it – while at the same time not strapping developers and builders? It’s a complicated question, and one that recently inspired Finance & Commerce to call on a team of experts in that field.

Read the full forum here. 

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Opinion: How the core cities can address the affordable-housing problem

Pioneer Press column by Steve Minn

Pioneer Press reporter Frederick Melo recently explored the robust housing development in St. Paul, questioning if too much luxury housing would raise rents for the working poor (“How will luxury housing boom affect metro rents?” Feb. 11). If policymakers are willing to embrace market forces, the affordable housing supply problem can be solved.

The solution for our metro core is to increase supply with incentives that embrace what investors want — yield. Our educated workforce and high metro median income are attractive to investors chasing yield. The most important driver to our development landscape is the ready stock of multi-family housing desperately in need of reinvestment. Unfortunately, this reinvestment has come at the loss of existing affordable housing.

Read Steve’s full column here.

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Affordable apartments proposed for Lyn-Lake area of Minneapolis

A proposed high-density project would include 222 units in the heart of the bustling neighborhood.

Lake Street Apartments on Lake Street and Harriet Avenue are proposed to have two phases which would have a total of 222 apartment units. Image courtesy Lupe Development Partners and ESG Architects.

A developer wants to build a pair of 111-unit, affordable apartment complexes in the trendy Lyn-Lake area of south Minneapolis.

The first six-story apartment building, which is being called Lake Street Apartments, would replace several old commercial buildings and a small parking lot located on the northeast corner of West Lake Street and Harriet Avenue.

A second phase would include the construction of a twin building across Harriet Avenue that would replace an auto repair shop and parking lots.

“There just isn’t a lot of affordable housing in the neighborhood,” said Steve Minn, vice president and chief financial manager of Minneapolis-based Lupe Development Partners, which is proposing the project. “A lot of people who lived in the neighborhood have been forced out.”

The busy Lyn-Lake area is characterized by bustling nightlife and numerous eateries and attractions that have made the south Minneapolis neighborhood a popular destination.

Several new complexes have been built in the area in recent years such as the Blue Apartments, Lime Apartments and the Murals of LynLake, but they have all been upscale with higher market-rate rents.

Th Minneapolis Planning Commission is set to discuss the development Thursday at its Committee of the Whole meeting. Lupe bought the auto shop site in 2016 for $1.8 million, and had previously proposed a project for that space last August.
The original proposal called for one 128-unit building that would take up the auto and tire shop and lots to the west of Harriet Avenue and span an alleyway that split the block. After neighborhood feedback, Lupe decided to divide the project into two complexes instead, Minn said.

Pending city approvals, the first phase of the project is set to break ground in 2019 with full occupation expected by mid-2020. Lupe has site control of the property where the first phase will be built, but hasn’t closed on the purchase. The second phase wouldn’t be ready to be occupied until 2021.

The units in each building would be a mix of studios, one- and two-bedroom units and townhouses. Six units would be reserved for people with disabilities and managed by Simpson Housing Service and three units would be designated for priority housing placement and case management by the county’s Human Services and Public Health Department.
Residents would have to meet income restrictions, with most earning no more than 60 percent of the metropolitan median family income.

The project is close to the Midtown Greenway bike trail, and Minn anticipates that many of the residents will use bikes.
Storage for hundreds of bikes and a bike repair room are included in the proposal.
Other amenities include a fitness facility, business center, community rooms and outdoor decks. Also planned for the apartment buildings are green roofs and solar panels.

Lupe has completed several affordable housing projects including the Mill City Quarter in downtown Minneapolis and the East Side Apartments in St. Paul.

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East Side Apartments to bring more affordable housing to Dayton’s Bluff

The Dayton’s Bluff neighborhood in St. Paul is getting another batch of income-restricted rental housing.

Construction is wrapping up on the East Side Apartments, a three-story, 114-unit rental building at 1256 Wilson Av. on the east side of St. Paul. The project is next to the 102-unit Wilson Ridge Apartments, which was acquired by Wall Cos. and Lupe Development in 2014, renovated the next year and quickly leased.

East Side Apartments to bring more affordable housing to Dayton’s Bluff

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Lupe likes Lyn-Lake area for workforce apartments

Ten years ago, developer Steve Minn spotted an aging, one-story retail building near a key intersection in the Lyn-Lake area of Minneapolis and knew what he wanted to do.

Lupe likes Lyn-Lake area for workforce apartments

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Broadway Flats seeks $1.5M in TIF

The request is larger than Minneapolis typically approves for affordable housing projects, but the proposal envisions more than 100 units in a part of the city that was destroyed by the 2011 tornado.

Broadway Flats seeks $1.5M in TIF


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Top Projects of 2016 – Mill City Quarter

Plenty of creativity was required to transform a Minneapolis parking lot into a mixed-use development that embraces European ideas and blends into the historic Mill District.

Located at the northeast corner of South Second Street and Third Avenue South, Mill City Quarter is a six-story, 150-unit senior-friendly affordable apartment building, whose property features the city’s first “woonerf,” a pedestrian-friendly shared street.

Top Projects of 2016 – Mill City Quarter


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Baraka Auto opens at Lake & Harriet housing development site

While a developer works to secure funding for a six-story apartment building over the coming year, Baraka Auto Center is operating at 510 W. Lake St.

Baraka Auto opens at Lake & Harriet housing development site

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