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Oct. 31, 2013

Dominium Starts Work on Minneapolis Adaptive Reuse

By Dees Stribling, Contributing Editor

Minneapolis—Work has started on A-Mill Artist Lofts, an adaptive reuse of a vacant Pillsbury flourmill on the banks of the Mississippi River in Minneapolis. Shuttered in 2003, the structure will be converted into 251 loft apartments by Dominium, an apartment development specialist.

A-Mill Artist Lofts will be a full-scale renovation and reconfiguration of the existing Pillsbury flourmill complex. One of 21 National Historic Landmarks in the state of Minnesota, the flourmill was originally built in 1881 and was the world’s largest flour mill for nearly 40 years.

The adaptive-reuse is specifically designed to suit the needs of artists. Common amenities will include studios for yoga/Pilates, dance, pottery, plays and other performances, music, painting, and clay, as well as a kiln room, tool shop/frame room, and multiple gallery spaces and art display walls. The property will also have a fitness center, multi-purpose space, bike storage and conference room.

U.S. Bank provided a $118 million financing package to support the renovation. The package includes a construction loan, a letter of credit and a purchase of the Minnesota Historic Tax Credits generated by the redevelopment. Affordable Housing Partners Inc., a Berkshire Hathaway Company, is the equity investor, committing nearly $75 million to secure its investment in the Federal Low-Income Housing Tax Credits and Federal Historic Tax Credits.

Also, Cornerstone Real Estate Advisors provided permanent financing of nearly $26 million. A-Mill Artist Lofts also benefits from financial support from the City of Minneapolis, the Minnesota Historical Society, the Metropolitan Council, Hennepin County, and the Minnesota Department of Employment & Economic Development.

Environmental abatement is now under way, with interior demolition to follow. The project is scheduled to be completed by the fall of 2015. Weis Builders is the general contractor and the BKV Group is the architect.

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