Cambridge moves forward with plans for new apartment complex in Parkwood

A new development is proposed to be constructed in the Parkwood Development neighborhood in Cambridge.

During the Cambridge City Council meeting April 15, the council heard a presentation involving a project to build two, 46-unit, three-story apartment buildings on approximately seven acres, just off Opportunity Boulevard.

Economic Director Stan Gustafson explained the project would be an upscale market-rate apartment building with many amenities, with the two buildings built in two phases.

Following discussion, the council approved a motion to amend the Parkwood Development plat, and to allow the developers to keep the project moving forward through the appropriate channels. This action was for only the first phase of the project, for the first apartment building.

Gustafson explained Parkwood Development is a planned unit development (PUD) that consists of single family, detached townhomes, attached townhomes, twin homes and senior housing units and very little development has occurred over the last several years.

In 2010, the city council approved the final wear coat on the streets in Parkwood and an assessment was placed on all the available lots and outlots in 2011. Within the last two years the majority of these lots became state tax forfeited property and placed up for sale by Isanti County through an auction process where no bids were received.

Gustafson said staff started conversations with developer Terry Mick of Mick Construction, and Mike Stoebe with INH Property Management, about constructing a market rate apartment complex.

Gustafson explained these apartments will feature an elevator, business office, library, manager office, community room, washer and dryers in each unit, playground, screened balconies, security system (keyless entry and cameras) and an in-house fitness center. The designated library may be utilized for another use and will be determined prior to construction.

The building would be sprinkled, include parking on the first level or below grade, and include a parking lot that would meet the city’s requirements.

This apartment building would include 14-one bedroom units, 29-two bedroom units and 3-three bedroom units. These units are primarily market rate apartments with 20 percent income qualified to meet tax increment financing (TIF) rules.

The projected building cost is $4,470,000, or $97,174 per developed unit. The development would be located off of Opportunity Boulevard, between 8th Lane SE and proposed 11th Avenue SE.

Gustafson said the developer will also pave either 11th Street to Roosevelt or Zachary, and 10th Street to Roosevelt as part of their project costs.

Gustafson stated Parkwood is a tax forfeited property and no taxes are being generated or paid, and there are unpaid special assessments from the street project that was completed in 2011.

City Administrator Lynda Woulfe noted once the parcels are purchased, the special assessments would be paid first, followed by the delinquent taxes paid back to the city of Cambridge, Isanti County and the Cambridge-Isanti School District.

The developer will seek TIF to help finance this project with the added cost of the upscale apartment building.

TIF will assist the developer to build in added value to this project by increasing future property tax that would not normally be done without the use of TIF.

Jim Illies, Jr., has been involved in property management since 1988, and in 1996, joined INH Property Management, Inc. as a full-time property manager and became a full partner at INH in 2002.

Illies, Jr. explained the apartment building will be general occupancy and open to everyone. He said rents in the building would range from mid-$800s to low-$900s for the two-bedroom apartments, and include one parking stall.

“We think there is a healthy market for this type of apartment building,” Illies, Jr. said.