An apartment building pitched to replace housing lost after the closure of St. Anthony’s only mobile home park has been dropped from the developer’s latest project plans.
The building had earlier been a key affordable-housing component of the proposed Lowry Grove redevelopment. The park’s June 30 closure forced nearly 100 families off land that for decades had been rented to mobile home and RV owners. What remains is a mix of proposed units that include market-rate apartments, senior housing and an assisted-living facility.
The developer that bought Lowry Grove, the Village, revealed its latest vision for the site at a public meeting Wednesday. The proposal is expected to be submitted to the city this week.
The original proposal, which city leaders rejected in October, called for 97 units of affordable housing to replace homes lost from the park closure.
The developer had previously considered reducing the affordable housing component to 51 units as part of a broader reduction in density. But the purchase agreement for the bank property expired this month, so the separate affordable housing building has been cut — at least for now.
About 400 apartment units will be built on the 15 remaining acres, according to the plan. More than 800 had been proposed. The retooled plan drops the units per acre to about 27 from 41.4, in answer to neighborhood misgivings.
Brad Hoyt, president of the Village, said Wednesday that reducing density in response to city concerns undercut the original affordable component. “The only way they can get built is if they’re subsidized, and that subsidy comes from density,” Hoyt said.
Hoyt said the project will offer 117 studio and one-bedroom apartments deemed affordable to those living at 80 percent of the area median income — $68,000 for a family of four, according to Metropolitan Council figures. That means rent will be less than $1,265 for studios and $1,356 for a one-bedroom unit. Lowry Grove residents say they paid about $450 monthly before the park closed.
To generate revenue, the park will be reopening to RVs in the coming months. If the city approves the project, construction could begin later this year.