Apologies to photo purists out there for my (lack of) photography skills. But this event Tuesday featured the telltale hardhats, fancy shovels and a ceremonial pile of dirt.

You guessed it! A groundbreaking -- this one for One Southdale Place. But this was different because it features a 232-unit  upscale residential project in Southdale's parking lot. Yes, the sea of parking that practically surrounds the nation's first enclosed shopping mall, and just about every other mall out there, as well.

The $45 million project, which is expected to open next summer, features studios spanning as little as 540 square feet, to penthouses with 2,015 square feet. Located at the corner of York Av. S. and W. 69th St., it's being co-developed by Stuart Cos. and Simon Property Group, Southdale's owner.

Three buildings will be constructed, the largest of which will be 10 stories. Other amenities include a rooftop terrace, 245-hour fitness center, club room, private theater, business center, outdoor pool, lawn bowling and undgerground heated parking. A pedestrian walkway will connect the complex to Southdale.

Other partners include BKV Group, architects; Kraus-Anderson, construction; and a division of PNC bank, for financing.

Janet Moore covers commercial real estate for the Star Tribune.


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