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225 Portland Av. S., Minneapolis

Type: Multifamily rental

Units: 175

Size: 134,000 square feet

Cost: $30 million

Developer: Village Green Cos.

Details: Preleasing activities have begun for the Mill District City Apartments, one of the Twin Cities market's few ongoing large-scale multifamily construction projects.

Its developer, Michigan-based Village Green Cos., says general contractor Frana Cos. is on schedule with its construction timetable and the initial move-ins are set for late October. The 175-unit, $30 million project will offer the first new luxury rental units in Minneapolis' trendy Mill District since the area saw hundreds of condominiums sprout in the last decade.

Scott Ferguson, Village Green's senior area director for the Twin Cities, said 17 apartments have been available for preleasing to select customers and that eight already have been spoken for, indicating that interest in the project will be intense.

"We're going to be opening Mill District up for leasing to the general public in the next week or so, and we've set up an office for them at our sister property, the Eitel Building City Apartments off Loring Park," he said. "We'll be giving tours of those apartments, since they're very similar to what will be available at Mill District."

Village Green -- which also owns the Lake Calhoun City Apartments in Uptown and four other Twin Cities properties -- is clearly aiming at the upscale demographic that before the recession would have been buying condos in the historic district rather than renting. The project is heavy on the amenities, which include a private courtyard with a two-sided outdoor movie screen and an indoor-outdoor pool, a sizable fitness center and concierge services.

The rents reflect Mill District's prestigious image -- from $990 per month for a studio to $2,200 for three-bedroom units and more for loft-style apartments with views of St. Anthony Falls on one side and the downtown Minneapolis skyline on the other.

The company also released its first renderings of the apartments' exterior, revealing a design similar to its Eitel project. Ferguson said Village Green is adhering to national green building standards in its use of recycled materials and energy efficiency management.


Don Jacobson, a freelance writer based in St. Paul, can be contacted at