Minneapolis: New complex to displace Sally’s for nine months

Print

Students may return from break this fall and find another Stadium Village facelift underway.

A six-story, at least $20 million student housing complex being proposed would displace Sally’s Saloon and Eatery and surrounding businesses in July.

Development of 700 Washington is in its early stages. CPM Property Management presented its plans to the City Planning Commission Committee of the Whole last week.

The proposed building has 98 apartment units with 158 bedrooms and stands out because of its black, gray and gold coloring, said Daniel Oberpriller, owner of CPM Property Management.

The complex would have three retail spaces on the ground floor. Sally’s and Gold Country will likely move back into those storefronts after construction. The new apartments are slated to open in fall 2014.

Sally’s Standards

Developers have been eyeing the property for years, said Chris Diebold, co-owner of Sally’s and the building.

One proposed a new apartment complex connected to the now-under-construction Station on Washington building by skyway, but the idea was rejected because Sally’s wasn’t part of the deal.

“Unless you’re willing to work with Sally’s, we’re not willing to sell you the property,” Diebold said.

CPM has exclusive buying rights to the property if the city approves the plan for the structure, Oberpriller said. Diebold said the sale is contingent on Sally’s having a place in the new building.

Sally’s would likely be closed for about nine months, Diebold said.

During construction, the restaurant may open a beer garden or other outdoor areas for game days, he said, but it would need city approval

“It’s all speculative,” he said.

Gold Country also has an agreement with CPM to relocate into the new retail space, Oberpriller said, but CPM will try to accommodate the remaining current tenants as well.

“We are working with Toppers, and we are going to reach out to … Steady Tattoo,” he said.

Out of a job?

Despite plans to re-open Sally’s and other businesses in 700 Washington, some employees aren’t sure they’d move along with them.

Derrick Hollenkamp, a bartender at Sally’s, said he’d like to come back if the restaurant reopened after a year but doesn’t know what he would do financially in the meantime.

“A whole year without working somewhere would be kind of difficult to survive,” he said.

Diebold said employees at Sally’s could be relocated to other bars he co-owns.

“Nobody’s going to be out a job,” he said.

Maia Gunderson, a server at Sally’s who graduated from the University of Minnesota in December, said she’s not sure the bar would have the same feeling after a year of closure.

“I feel like the atmosphere would be different if it was in this high-rise building,” she said.

Finding a new job would be difficult for student employees, Gunderson said.

“All the people who are still in school … they’re going to have to start all over somewhere new,” Gunderson said. “Plus there’s so many other apartment buildings going up around here, I don’t know why they would need more.”

Alex Levine, owner of Steady Tattoo, said he heard about the construction plans through a news story a friend sent him.

“We haven’t gotten any formal letter or information,” he said.

Levine said he would be disappointed to close shop right as the light rail opens.

“Over the last few years we’ve been struggling tooth and nail to get through the construction,” he said. “The idea of leaving the area is pretty
devastating.”

More housing, the better

Janelle Widmeier, a Minneapolis city planner, said City Council policies call for more density in Stadium Village.

“This is one area that’s designated as an activity center, a growth center, and with the light rail there it’s a transit area,” she said. “To ensure that we have a sustainable city, we need people to live here, and it helps with keeping businesses and a lively neighborhood, too.”

Stadium Village Business Association is supportive of the new development, said President Joe Walvoord.

“It’ll be great,” he said, “the more housing we have in Stadium Village … the better.”

The future of the area is uncertain, Widmeier said, because while there have already been a number of new developments, more might be coming.

“This is up to the market to determine what happens, but there may be more interest in re-development in the area with the light rail,” she said.