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Elevage Development Group of Blaine is building a $40 million mixed-use project in Shoreview that will bring upscale apartments and townhouses to a part of the metro area that has virtually none.

The McMillan will include 135 apartments, 14 townhouses and a 6,800-square-foot commercial space that will include a restaurant, according to Corey Burstad, president of Elevage.

The building site is near the intersection of Interstate 694, Rice Street and County Road E, which provides primary access to the apartment component of the project. The site includes several parcels that were home to a dated mall and a handful of single-family homes. The project is being built by Frana Cos. of Hopkins and was designed by ESG Architects of Minneapolis.

The project will essentially have two phases, the first is an L-shaped five-level apartment building that will face County Road E and Rice Street. That component is already under construction. Next comes two rows of multilevel, rowhouse-style townhouses with their own access. There will also be about 130 surface parking spaces.

Burstad said that market-rate rents are expected to range from $1,100 for a studio apartment to $2,400 for a townhouse, and that units will average 900 square feet, which is slightly larger than what is typical in more urban markets.

Such projects are part of a broader trend in the Twin Cities metro, as apartment construction shifts from the cities to the suburbs. Most of that construction so far has happened in the southwestern suburbs, while the eastern suburbs have seen been relatively little apartment construction. Two large multifamily projects are already under construction in neighboring Vadnais Heights and Little Canada.

Burstad is a newcomer to the multifamily business, so the company is partnering with veteran Twin Cities-area apartment developer and manager Bader Development on his McMillan project. Steven Scott Management will manage the buildings, which are expected to be completed in April 2018.

"It's always been a goal of mine to do the highest and best use for these sites," he said. "I bring in people who are good at what they do."

Burstad is also venturing in the hotel development business with two Twin Cities-area hotel projects, but he's partnering with Portland, Ore.-based Provenance Hotels, which will manage the 40-room boutique hotel he is developing in what was once the former Joseph Wolf building in Stillwater. That project will include a new restaurant and other amenities.

He is also developing an 80-room sports-themed hotel near the National Sports Center in Blaine. It will be next to Bricks Kitchen & Pub, one of four restaurants owned by Burstad. The others, all in the north metro, include the Village Pub in St. Anthony, T-Box Bar & Grill in Ham Lake and the Roadside in Blaine.