Work has started on a project aimed at turning blighted industrial land into apartments in the Prospect Park neighborhood.

The project along SE. 4th Street, which developers are calling Green on Fourth, will include five- and six-story buildings, with 243 units and underground parking. A fourth of the units will be income-restricted.

"For people and families in Minneapolis, a lack of access to affordable housing is what stands between them and economic security," Mayor Jacob Frey said in a statement. "Green on Fourth — the product of years of hard work and collaboration among the City of Minneapolis and private and public partners — will help people find that security and build a life in our city."

The land is the former location of Boeser Sheet Metal. The contaminated site was remediated with help from Hennepin County and the Metropolitan Council. The city of Minneapolis last year approved spending $4 million on street improvements including better sidewalks, lighting and bike lanes as part of a larger effort to make the blocks around the Green Line's Prospect Park station more appealing from TCF Bank Stadium to the Surly brewery and restaurant complex.

Additional improvements to the corridor, such as stormwater collection, green space, trees and picnic tables, have been paid for with $485,000 from Hennepin County and $1 million from the Metropolitan Council.

Sixty-six apartments will be restricted to households with incomes earning 60 percent of the area median income or less. Of those, 49 units will be available only to households with incomes at or below 50 percent of area median income.

The developer is Timberland Partners, a national firm. The city will spend $3.2 million in grants for the project and nearly $4 million in tax-increment financing.

"This is a great success for the broader Towerside Innovation District and a lot of credit goes to all the work that so many neighbors and business owners have put into it so far," said Council Member Cam Gordon, whose ward includes the site. "It's the first Towerside building to include affordable housing, and is a great step towards building the truly mixed-income, diverse new neighborhood the community has envisioned for hundreds of new homes and jobs in the years to come."

Adam Belz • 612-673-4405