A luxury apartment tower to be built at the site of the Guitar Center store in Edina has received preliminary approval from the city.

The 19-story building with 186 units will be constructed on a 1.25-acre parcel on Hazelton Road close to France Avenue.

According to city documents, the building’s height means the proposed apartments would be much denser than other residential developments at 150 units per acre. In comparison, Trammell Crow Co.’s development project for Edina School’s bus garage is 100 units per acre and the Onyx Edina apartments has 52 units per acre.

The Edina City Council had a public hearing on the project last month. The city approved the comprehensive plan amendment and preliminary rezoning, but the project still needs to receive final approval, said Edina Community Development Director Cary Teague.

The developer behind the proposal is Lund Real Estate Partners, which is led by Tom Lund.

The Guitar Center store recently relocated to Southtown Shopping Center in Bloomington.

Beacon Bluff in St. Paul is filling up

The East Side of St. Paul used to be the home of several large, vibrant businesses.

Residents still remember when the Hamm’s brewery, Whirlpool and 3M Co. were the major employers. Years after those firms closed plants, the area is welcoming a slew of new businesses and could be getting a new retailer.

Beacon Bluff, the 61-acre site of the former 3M campus along E. 7th Street and Minnehaha Avenue in the Dayton’s Bluff neighborhood, has had all its larger parcels sold to be occupied by different businesses.

Some of the other entities at Beacon Bluff include: the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis, Baldinger Bakery, East Side Family Clinic, HealthEast Medical Transportation and Viking Electric Supply, Inc.

In 2008, the St. Paul Port Authority began to purchase land for the site and after some remediation started to recruit companies to the business park. The property is the largest shovel-ready site for industrial development in St. Paul.

The Port Authority projected the development of the site would produce 1,000 jobs and with the most recent parcels sold, Beacon Bluff will hit that estimate, said Monte Hilleman, the St. Paul Port Authority’s senior vice president of real estate redevelopment.

Fabric dome manufacturer Yeadon Domes has bought a little more than 3 acres of land for a 50,000-square-foot facility.

Camada Limited Partnership, the parent company of Vomela Cos., purchased about 11.5 acres for a 250,000- to 300,000-square-foot facility for the graphics company.

The Port Authority is also in early discussions to bring a more mixed-use development to the site. Hilleman said it was imperative that the Port Authority redevelop Beacon Bluff.

“It would just be this gigantic cancer of disinvestment,” he said. “That disinvestment really just spreads … in communities that aren’t as aggressive as we have been here in St. Paul.”

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