New blood may be in store for Mill District in Minneapolis
- Article by: SUSAN FEYDER
- Star Tribune
- September 18, 2009 - 11:11 PM
The long-vacant site of the Portland, an upscale condominium project in Minneapolis' Mill District that was canceled in 2007, may finally be getting a new life.
Village Green Companies, a Michigan-based rental property owner and developer, has reworked an agreement to buy the site bounded by S. 2nd Street and Washington and Portland Avenues so that it can proceed with plans for a 175-unit apartment building. The site is owned by the city and Brighton Development Corp., which canceled plans for the condos and a live/work project because of lower-than-anticipated interest from buyers and tenants.
Village Green initially had hoped to buy the site last year, but was unable to get financing from its lender, J.P. Morgan Chase & Co. Under terms of a new purchase agreement approved by the city Thursday, Village Green can defer land sale payments to Brighton and the city for as long as two years.
The deferral will help the developer bridge a gap that it must deal with in construction financing. U.S. Bank has agreed to provide a construction loan for 63 percent of the cost of the project.
In the past, Village Green has been able to get loans for 75 percent of a project's value.
Village Green CEO Jonathan Holtzman said Friday that in a week he expects to announce a fall groundbreaking for the project, to be called Mill District City Apartments. In addition to the apartments, the plans call for about 3,500 square feet of commercial space and below-grade parking for 175 cars.
Village Green has managed apartment communities in the Twin Cities area since the mid-1990s, and its local portfolio includes Eitel Building City Apartments, Lake Calhoun City Apartments, Loring Park City Apartments, Village Park of Bloomington and Village Park of Minnetonka.
Susan Feyder • 612-673-1723
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