DULUTH – A high-rise apartment complex in downtown Duluth that was supposed to start construction this fall is back on track to begin next spring.

The 15-story tower, which would be among the city's tallest buildings and is set to replace the Voyageur Lakewalk Inn on East Superior Street, was delayed by financing, bidding and utility negotiations, but the developer has "secured a general contractor, finalized negotiations with Duluth Energy Systems and secured primary lender," according to a Duluth Economic Development Authority resolution that would extend the deadline to start construction to April 30.

All that's still needed is a lender for the tax-increment financing note, which Northstar Development Interests LLC expects to have by the end of January. Duluth is kicking in $6.2 million in TIF money over the course of 25 years for the $75 million project.

City leaders have said it is the single largest private investment for a residential building in downtown Duluth.

The complex at 333 E. Superior St. would create 204 market-rate units with retail space, including a grocery store, proposed for the bottom floor. It does not include a new parking ramp.

Across the avenue, the new Essentia Health campus will also be rising over the next several years, contributing to a major change in the city's skyline.

The Economic Development Authority will take up the construction deadline extension at its meeting Wednesday.

Brooks Johnson