AFL-CIO Invests $29.8M to Modernize Seward Towers Apartments in Minneapolis

The AFL-CIO HIT is investing $29.8 million toward the renovation of 640 multifamily rental units in Minneapolis' Seward Towers.
Seward Towers East, Minneapolis

Seward Towers East, Minneapolis

MinneapolisThe AFL-CIO Housing Investment Trust recently announced that it will finance the substantial renovation of two high rise apartment buildings, Seward Towers East and West, located on Franklin Avenue and 9th St. The project will rehabilitate 640 multifamily rental units, 98 percent of which are affordable housing units.

The HIT is investing $29.8 million in the project, while the total development cost of the venture totals $99.2 million. Other sources of financing include Minnesota and Hennepin County funds. Renovations will include asbestos abatement, exterior cladding, new energy-efficient windows, and individual unit heating controls.

“The HIT is investing union pension funds to help gain a competitive return for investors while increasing affordable housing and creating jobs in the Minneapolis area, as well as in communities across the country,” said HIT Executive Vice President & CIO Stephanie Wiggins.

“The community appreciates the positive economic impact of the project, including the union construction jobs it will provide,” said Dan McConnell, business manager, Minneapolis Building and Construction Trades Council. The project is expected to add 270 union construction jobs.

Built in 1969 and 1970, occupying a combined 8.2 acres, each 21-story tower includes studio, one- and two-bedroom apartments with a parking garage and surface parking. Amenities include a large community room, playground area, common laundry facility and an Advantage Center. These two-story centers next to each tower are equipped with meeting rooms and classrooms, which provide various programs including English classes, early childhood education, youth development programs, homework help and tutoring, as well as employment and financial coaching and support. CommonBond Housing will continue to manage the property.

The Seward Towers are transit-oriented, located close to light rail and bus stops while retail centers, hotels, educational, entertainment, theater and museum opportunities are within walking distance, including the Mixed Blood Theatre. The Seward community is one of Twin Cities’ oldest neighborhoods and it is fully developed with residential and commercial property.

Working closely with mortgage lender JLL, Seward Towers East and West marks the HIT’s 16th project in Minneapolis. The HIT has invested $223.2 million to leverage $439.2 million in financing for its projects, creating 3,417 housing units, an estimated 2,330 union construction jobs, and more than 5,400 total jobs across industries in the community. These projects have generated an estimated $790 million in total economic benefits.

Photo courtesy of The HIT.