Summit Academy Charitable Golf Tournament.

Lupe project team supports Summit Academy.  L to R… Lupe VP Aaron Diederich, Frana Project Manager Darren Scott, Pope Architects President Ward Isaacson, and Frana President Mike Benedict, share a moment at the Oak Ridge Golf Course, where Lupe was a proud double hole sponsor for the annual Summit Academy Charitable Golf Tournament…


Posted in Lupe Development | Leave a comment

East Side Apartments Grand Opening

Lupe Development and City of Saint Paul officials marked the official opening of East Side Apartments. The new apartment’s 114 affordable housing units in Saint Paul’s Dayton’s Bluff neighborhood began welcoming tenants in fall 2017, and are now fully leased. Combined with the newly renovated Wilson Ridge Apartments next door, a total of 216 affordable housing units have been created or maintained as a part of this project.

Watch the press conference. 

Posted in Lupe Development | Leave a comment

Artspace withdraws its Grain Belt proposal

People who missed a recent presentation at East Side Neighborhood Services of proposals for the last developments in the Grain Belt Brewery campus got another chance on Thursday, March 8. Third Ward City Council member Steve Fletcher’s office put together an Open House at the FOOD Building that allowed local residents to talk to the developers in more depth.

Two of the developers who’ve submitted proposals for the City’s Request for Proposal for the remaining parcels in the area were present: Nordeast Development (a Lupe Development, Wall Companies and Ecumen partnership) and the Landon Group / Lander Group / Newport Partners. Members of both stood by their illustration boards and discussed their projects with guests.

Landon Group’s Becky Landon told one listener, “We have a vision of a vibrant housing and retail area; and we want to pay attention to the historical and environmental issues, as part of the public realm. We want to engage with the neighborhood about our shared values.”

At the Nordeast Development table, Maeve’s Coffee Shop owner Mary Cassidy spoke with Lupe Development’s Cameron Flakne. Cassidy said, “I understand the need for development and density, but I don’t want my customers pushed out the door. I wonder if there’s any thought to the future; and how do you keep the artists? How do you protect the people already here?”

To a question from another guest about “the Ramble,” a space between the existing Warehouse and Bottling House, Flakne said that while it is technically a right-of-way, and will be available for public events, it is analogous to the Downtown Commons, in that the property will be owned by the developers.

Notably absent from the evening’s presentation were representatives of Artspace, the third developer to present a proposal at the previous meeting. Artspace has owned and operated the Bottling House and Warehouse since 2004, and had proposed an expansion of studio space, new multi-family residential construction, and improvements to both of the existing buildings. Heidi Zimmer, Artspace’s Senior Vice President of Property Development, provided a statement on Monday, March 12:

“Artspace withdrew from the City RFP process as we have concluded that Artspace can more effectively accomplish our goals for the campus through collaboration with the selected master developer than we can through acting as master developer. This conclusion was reached after internal discussion regarding Artspace’s reflection on how to best serve the artist tenants of the Grain Belt campus and also one of our own capacity, as we are focused on the successful completion of Northside Artspace Lofts, a Minneapolis project in the Harrison neighborhood poised to start construction later this year. We welcome the opportunity for continued engagement and collaboration with city leaders and developers for the Grain Belt RFP.”

Fletcher said he felt that the Open House “was a really constructive event. People brought up issues the developers hadn’t addressed, and the access to the process of the development was greatly increased.”

Posted in Lupe Development | Leave a comment

Minneapolis apartment proposals hit market niches

March 19, 2018

Untapped or underserved apartment niches in Minneapolis neighborhoods have developers proposing three projects they hope to build during the next two years.

The largest of the projects is a two-phase apartment complex proposed in the Whittier neighborhood targeting renters earning 50 to 60 percent of the area median income, which is $90,400. Minneapolis-based Lupe Development Partners is proposing to start construction in summer 2019 of the first phase building at 2941 and 2943 Harriet Ave., and 414 and 410 W. Lake St.

The project would bring workforce housing to a part of the city that needs more of it, said Steve Minn, Lupe’s vice president.

“There is an incredible unmet need,” he said in an interview. “The demand is there.”

Lupe’s project was one of three that made their public debuts before the Minneapolis Planning Commission Committee of the Whole earlier this month. Also introducing new apartment proposals were Reuter Walton Development and Thor Cos.

Lupe’s Lake Street Apartments are on the longest timeline. The second phase of the apartments will start about a year after the first building opens in 2020, said Lupe’s Minn. The six-story complex will eventually total 222 units, according to documents filed with the city, and include walk-up units along Harriet Avenue South. The unit count is higher than the 168 Lupe proposed last summer because the developer purchased a second property across Harriet Avenue.

No commercial space is proposed for either phase of the project. Parking for the building will be on one underground level and one level at grade.

The development cost of the Lake Street Apartments is about $22 million for each phase, Minn said.

A little closer to downtown, Minneapolis-based Reuter Walton plans to build its 80-unit Riverside Apartments at 2510 Riverside Ave. The six-story building will consist largely of smaller, market-rate units that will be more affordable because of their size, said Kyle Brasser, a developer with the company. The development site — directly south of the University of Minnesota and the Masonic Children’s Hospital — is currently occupied by three single-family homes and a commercial building.

Expected renters will be hospital and university staff as well as some students.

“We feel like it’s an untapped area,” Brasser said in an interview. “There has not really been any new housing developed in the area.”

The Riverside Apartments will receive a preliminary development review before the Planning Commission this week. Development costs for the project are expected to be $16 million, Brasser said. Reuter Walton already owns portions of the project site.

The third project, proposed by Thor Cos. subsidiary Thor Living, may establish two firsts. The 44-unit building planned for a vacant site at 1925, 1931 and 1935 Park Ave. would be the first multifamily project for Minneapolis-based Thor. The four-story building — called the Apartments at Franklin & Park — would be built using modular construction. If completed, it would likely be the first of its kind in Minneapolis, according to Thor’s website. “In the city of Minneapolis, we don’t know of one,” said Thor Living President Pat Cruikshank in an interview.

The construction method could shorten the usual 12-month timetable for building apartments to five to six months. Thirty-five building sections built in a factory would be assembled on the project site, city documents show. Cruikshank declined to state an exact development cost, but said it will be similar to that of a traditionally built apartment building of that size.

Rents are expected to be somewhere between market rate and levels that are considered to be affordable. The unit mix would include one-, two-, and three-bedroom apartments.

“We’re calling it attainable housing,” Cruikshank said.

The project will likely get a preliminary development review within the next month, he said.

Posted in Lupe Development | Leave a comment

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.

Posted in Lupe Development | Leave a comment

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.

Posted in Lupe Development | Leave a comment

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. 

Posted in Lupe Development | Leave a comment

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.

Posted in Lupe Development | Leave a comment

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.

Posted in Lupe Development | Leave a comment

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

Posted in Lupe Development | Tagged , , , | Comments Off on East Side Apartments to bring more affordable housing to Dayton’s Bluff