Developer moving forward with rehab of historic apartments

The handsome Euclid View Flats, a vacant city-owned building now on the National Register of Historic Places, should be getting a full renovation starting in late January or early February. By fall 2015, the apartment building should be ready for tenants.
The handsome Euclid View Flats, a vacant city-owned building now on the National Register of Historic Places, should be getting a full renovation starting in late January or early February. By fall 2015, the apartment building should be ready for tenants. (Patrick Larkin/Review)
A historic picture of Euclid View Flats shows the aparment building’s original look. After a significant $3 million renovation, the building will be restored to capture some of the original charm.
A historic picture of Euclid View Flats shows the aparment building’s original look. After a significant $3 million renovation, the building will be restored to capture some of the original charm. (Submitted photo)

A handsome brick building that’s a prime example of blight in Dayton’s Bluff may soon be restored.

The historic Euclid View Flats at 234 Bates Ave. looks to be getting a full rehabilitation and eventually new tenants, after years of neglect.

A developer is working to renovate the building, which has been vacant since 2010 and was poorly managed prior to that.

The city’s Housing and Redevelopment Authority bought the foreclosed building in 2011 for $346,000 from a bank, intending to hold on to the historically significant structure until it could be brought back to life.

According to city documents, the three-story apartment building was designed by architect Herman Kretz and was constructed from 1894-95.

The building’s red brick exterior, and limestone and brownstone window details make it easily recognizable as a historic property.

“The restoration of the property will eliminate a vacant, blighted building that has continually attracted crime and vagrants,” the document states.

And real estate developer Sand Companies, Inc. looks poised to bring it back into the fold.

After getting it listed on the National Register of Historic Places last February, the company, which is based in Waite Park, Minnesota, is now in the process of getting construction plans approved.

Sand representatives met with the St. Paul Heritage Preservation Commission to present tentative plans, which include a substantial renovation of the building’s interior.

With the historic designation, the company is hoping to secure historic tax credits for the project, to lower overall construction costs.

The rehab will cost an estimated $2,998,999, which will include a complete interior overhaul of the building’s 12 units, changing them to two-bedroom units instead of three, and opening up the floor plans.

The renovation will also include a variety of exterior work that brings back some of the property’s original character. For instance, Sand Companies is proposing adding new front porches that match the historic style of the building, as well as adding “charm” to windows and doors.

Construction is tentatively scheduled to start in late January or early February of 2015, with the goal of completing it by September.

Keeping rents affordable

The building will eventually be sold to Sand Companies, Inc. for $1. They’ll own and manage the property under the name St. Paul Euclid, LLC.

The city sites the extensive repair investment, the adding of affordable housing, the added property-tax revenue, and the elimination of holding and maintenance costs currently covered by the city as reasons for the $1 price tag.

“We’re very excited to see a historic resource that’s going to be put into natural life,” said Patty Lilledahl, director of the St. Paul Housing Department.

The building’s 12 units will all be designated as affordable housing, and will be for people earning between 50 and 120 percent of the area median income.

Jennifer Jordan, project manager in the city’s Planning and Economic Development Department, noted that this is market rate for housing in the neighborhood. She estimated each unit would rent for between $500 and $900 a month, depending on a tenant’s income.

The HRA requested proposals for the rehabilitation of the apartment building back in May 2013 -- Sand Companies, Inc. was chosen out of a pool of applicants, because it requested the least amount of subsidy and had experience in rehabbing historic properties.

According to city documents, “SCI was established in 1991 and has completed 72 construction projects to date with annual construction figures of approximately $30 to $40 million. 

“In addition to construction projects, SCI currently manages 1,200 units across six states.  In Saint Paul, they have completed the historic rehabilitation of the Minnesota Building and the Lower Town Lofts and are currently partnering with Aurora-St. Anthony Community Development Corporation on the redevelopment of the Old Home site on University Avenue.”

Contact Patrick Larkin at 651-748-7816 or at eastside@lillienews.com. Follow him on Twitter at @ESRPatrickLark.

 

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