A $79 million redevelopment plan that will create more retail, housing and parking in Edina’s 50th and France shopping district now has the green light.
The Edina City Council voted unanimously Tuesday night to approve plans for the Edina Collaborative, a project that re-imagines vacant property and parking lots along W. 49½ Street, behind the intersection of W. 50th Street and France Avenue.
Developers Buhl Investors of Edina and Minneapolis-based Saturday Properties plan to build 35,000 square feet of new retail space, 110 apartment units and add more than 130 new public parking stalls.
“The plan you see today has truly been a collaboration among our team, the city of Edina and the people who are living, working and playing near 50th and France every day,” said Pete Deanovic, principle of Buhl Investors, in a statement. “As both developers and as fellow neighbors, we’re honored to have been selected to help shape the heart of our city for generations to come.”
The project will include a 1-acre public plaza with connecting walkways and rotating public art installations. Construction is scheduled to take place in two stages, beginning in August with the north side of W. 49½ Street and then moving south.
Last December, the Edina Housing and Redevelopment Authority selected the developers’ proposal. Since then, the developers, who live in Edina, have gathered resident suggestions at more than 100 meetings. The plans have been adjusted to address some concerns that the residential complex looked too massive by reducing the height of the western corner and chopping up the facade with different styles and setbacks. The apartment count has gone down slightly from the original proposal as a result.
The project replaces a parking structure and adjacent lot on the south side of W. 49½ Street with a six-story apartment complex with street-level retail stores and underground parking.
An existing parking structure on the north side of the street will be raised to four stories and expanded to vacant lots with street-level commercial space.
“Edina’s Housing and Redevelopment Authority is excited to partner with the Buhl/Saturday team to enhance the desirability and competitiveness of the 50th & France district,” said Bill Neuendorf, Edina’s economic development manager, in a release. “This team was selected based on their passion, community commitment and expertise. As the concept evolved, their creativity, flexibility and sincere commitment to community engagement shone through.”