Just Listed brings you the latest news and information from the Twin Cities-area commercial and residential real estate market and beyond from veteran reporters Jim Buchta and Kristen Leigh Painter.

City of Minneapolis seeks proposals for key Gateway District plot

Posted by: Kristen Leigh Painter under Architecture Updated: October 15, 2014 - 1:14 PM

Minneapolis is seeking development proposals for an entire city block, commonly called the Nicollet Hotel Block, that is key to many leaders' vision for the Gateway District.

The plot, 30 Third Street South, sits at the intersection of several thriving downtown districts. Bordered by Washington Avenue, Hennepin Avenue, Third Street South and Nicollet Mall. A surface parking lot currently occuplies the 1.7 block. 

The city's request for proposals (RFP) outlines its goals for that critical junction:

  • an iconic, high-quality, designed new construction structure(s) of at least 20 active floors
  • a mix of commercial, retail, residential, office and hotel uses
  • active street-level retail
  • integrated green space for the public

"The Nicollet Hotel block has arguably the most potential of any parcel in the city, and consequently we will not settle for anything short of iconic,” said Ward 3 Council Member Jacob Frey, in a news release.  “In one fell swoop we can add people to downtown, create green space, and trigger connection to the river. We expect that designers and developers will bring their best.”

Minneapolis' Community Planning and Economic Development (CPED) department staff has a pre-proposal Q&A meeting scheduled for Thursday, Nov. 6 at 11:00 a.m. to discuss the RFP. 

Proposals must be submitted by Dec. 11. 

MN Real Estate Hall of Fame gets three new members

Posted by: Jim Buchta under Architecture, Buying Updated: October 14, 2014 - 11:51 AM

The Minnesota Real Estate Hall of Fame has three new members, including two who hail from the St. Cloud area.

George Karvel chaired the real estate programs at both the University of St. Thomas and St. Cloud State University and has been a prolific writer, lecturer and litigation consultant. He's best-known for his popular Sunday morning real estate program on WCCO radio and a newspaper column.

George Karvel

George Karvel

Cyril “Cy” Kuefler Sr. (1925-2001) was a successful real estate entrepreneur also from the St. Cloud area. Here's what the nomination report said about him: "He worked hard to promote his own business and to improve his profession. He believed in the power of education and played a significant role in elevating the educational and ethical standards within the real estate industry. His progressive vision included real estate programs in higher education and his efforts have had far-reaching and long-lasting benefits for real estate students, consumers and companies in Minnesota."

Jim Stanton been credited for shaping the terrain of a large metropolitan area. From Coon Rapids’ Riverdale Village in the north metro to Prior Lake’s Wilds Golf Course in the south metro, Stanton has developed more than 6,000 home sites in 28 metro area cities. He's also built numerous commercial buildings, and according to the nomination report "has made a significant contribution to the real estate industry through the projects he has completed and through his extraordinary service work with industry-related organizations."

Jim Stanton

Jim Stanton

The inductees will be honored during a morning ceremony from 8 to 10:30 a.m Thursday, Nov. 6 at the Golden Valley Golf and Country Club with a keynote address by Robert Senkler, chairman and CEO of the Securian Financial Group and chair of the Minnesota Business Partnership. The program is open to the public and the cost is $50. The Minnesota Real Estate Hall of Fame was established in 2010 by the Shenehon Center for Real Estate at the University of St. Thomas Opus College of Business. Find out who else is the Hall of Fame by clicking here.

A September swoon for Twin Cities home sales

Posted by: Evan Ramstad under Buying Updated: October 13, 2014 - 10:32 AM

Higher house prices beckoned sellers last month in the Twin Cities metro, but buyers weren't as plentiful. During September there was a 7.1-percent decline in home sales compared with last year, according to new data from the Minneapolis Area Association of Realtors. Despite softening demand, the median price of those closings increased 5 percent to $205,000 as foreclosure sales were replaced by more expensive traditional deals.

The disparity between falling sales and rising prices is a reflection of a recent shift in the market: With foreclosure rates nearing pre-crisis levels, the investors who one dominated the market are quickly fleeing. While the decline in sales is frustrating to many would-be sellers, this change in fundamentals is being viewed as a positive sign. We'll tell you more about that shift in a complete story in the Tuesday paper. 

Medina one step closer to getting its first affordable rental housing

Posted by: Jim Buchta under Architecture Updated: October 10, 2014 - 1:14 PM

The Medina City Council approved a stage one vote this week to build a 26-unit affordable housing townhome development on a 3.8-acre site north of Highway 55 on Clydesdale Trail about 20 miles west of Minneapolis.

The plan received unanimous support from the city’s Planning Commission when first proposed earlier this year. The city's comprehensive plan calls for adding more than 500 affordable housing units to the city by 2020, and if approved these would be the first affordable rentals in the city.

The project is being proposed by Plymouth-based Dominium, which has developed and manages several thousand affordable housing units, including the Pillsbury A Lofts for artists across the Mississippi River from downtown Minneapolis.

What's next? A binding stage 2 vote will happen in December. Here's a link to documents submitted to the city.

Twin Cities CEOs will swing hammers for Habitat for Humanity

Posted by: Jim Buchta under Architecture Updated: October 9, 2014 - 5:15 PM
Here’s a shot of what one of the two houses looked like a couple weeks back when volunteers from General Mills were working on the job.

Hereâ s a shot of what one of the two houses looked like a couple weeks back when volunteers from General Mills were working on the job.

A Who’s Who of Minnesota execs, including Jay Lund, CEO of Andersen Corp., and Trudy Rautio, CEO of Carlson, will be swinging hammers in north Minneapolis on Monday to celebrate Twin Cities Habitat for Humanity’s 13th Annual CEO Build Day.

Lund and Rautio are CEO Build Day co-chairs, and they will be helping volunteers from more than two dozen companies build a pair of houses that will be sold to moderate-income families. Because of a disparity between construction costs and market values in the area, buyers of both houses will pay far less than what it actually costs to build the houses.

The 1,676 square-foot house at 3026 Logan Av. N., for example, appraised for $165,000, but the buyer will pay only $132,000. Habitat will hold the remainder of the value, about $33,000, as a forgivable second mortgage and gets the right of first refusal if they sell before paying off the mortgage. Buyers must have a family income 30 to 60 percent of the Twin Cities area median income to qualify. Both houses are spoken for, by the way.

Majestic Oaks Golf Club sells for $9.8 million

Posted by: Kristen Leigh Painter under Buying Updated: October 9, 2014 - 3:54 PM

Majestic Oaks Golf Club in Ham Lake has sold for $9.8 million, according to property records.

The sale -- which was posted on the Minnesota Department of Revenue's real estate portal Tuesday -- includes buildings and more than 394 acres of land.

Florida-based CNL Lifestyles Properties sold Majestic Oaks in a bundle with 47 other golf properties located throughout the U.S. CF Majestic Oaks Arcis, an LLC with a Manhattan address, is listed as the buyer. 

The new owners will continue using the property as a golf course and club, according to the certificate of real estate value. 

Majestic Oaks is only about three miles from another golf course, Bunker Hills Golf Club, in Coon Rapids. The expansive property contains two 18-hole golf course and one 9-hole golf course. During peak season, the golf club employs more than 100 people. 




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