Address: 212 James Av. N., Minneapolis

Type: Creative office

Size: 65,000 square feet

Developer: Wellington Management

Architect: Collage Architects

Details: In another example of the popularity of “creative office” spaces in the Twin Cities, work has begun on the new, three-story Leef Office Building in Minneapolis’ Harrison neighborhood after its developer received the necessary rezoning approvals from the city this spring.

Creative office is a commercial real estate designation referring in part to new-construction buildings designed to appeal to tenants seeking features such as flexible, open spaces and energy efficiency. Typical users include technology and professional firms.

St. Paul-based Wellington Management is building the 65,000-square-foot Leef project on the site of a vacant warehouse at 212 James Av. N., part of the quickly redeveloping Glenwood Avenue West Market District. Initial plans submitted last year envisioned rehabbing the structure, but under the updated proposal approved in April, Wellington has instead opted to raze it and construct an entirely new office/light industrial building in its place.

One portion of the 1970s-era warehouse, however, will be retained: A loading dock will be converted into an amenity that will “connect the tenant space with the public realm.”

The second phase of the project is the Northside Artspace Lofts, a 100-unit affordable housing building for artists. It is slated for a fall construction kickoff.


Don Jacobson