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Developers break ground on St. Michael Apartments

From St. Michael Press & News

City leaders gathered Sept. 21 with developer and modular-manufacturer RISE Modular, as well as other project contributors to break ground on the first of a four-building master-planned development in St. Michael.

“RISE Modular is very pleased to begin construction activities on St. Michael Apartments,” said Christian Lawrence, founder and CEO of RISE Modular. “Market-rate at this scale will be a great addition to the area, bringing more rental options to the St. Michael community and vitality to the Town Center.”

Located at the intersection of Town Center Drive and Larabee Avenue, St. Michael Apartments will be a three-story rental apartment community with units ranging from studios to three bedrooms, accommodating a variety of residents including first-time renters, small families and people looking to downsize.

“When the city established the vision for Town Center, it was planned to be a more urban development with a mix of commercial, civic and high-density residential,” said Marc Weigle, community development director for the city of St. Michael. “St. Michael Apartments is the fruition of that plan and its addition will help support the existing businesses in the area with both customers and employees and provide more options for young people, those in transition and growing families.”

The design and amenities of St. Michael Apartments are on trend with construction throughout the Twin Cities area. The exterior features a flat roof with a mix of brick and metal for the facade. Building amenities include a fitness room, a dedicated bike storage room, a community room for small gatherings and underground parking. RISE Modular will also extend a path that integrates into the city’s trail system and Town Center Park.

City Council members were joined by Weigle and Lawrence as well as Dean Davolis, CEO of DJR Architecture and members of the architecture and RISE Modular development, construction and mod-manufacturing team to celebrate the groundbreaking. RISE Modular is performing all development, construction and modular manufacturing services for St. Michael Apartments.

In addition to being St. Michael’s first market-rate apartment community of this scale, St. Michael Apartments will also be RISE’s first project of this kind outside Minneapolis/St. Paul. Modules will be constructed offsite at RISE’s manufacturing facility in Owatonna concurrently with onsite construction activities. The completely finished modules are trucked to the site where they are lifted by crane and then stacked and joined to form the apartment’s structure. Because each unit will have been completed off-site, on-site construction activities will be considerably shorter-. Materials are not exposed to weather, dirt or debris and because work is completed in a temperature-controlled manufacturing facility.

Construction is expected to take 10 months. RISE Modular plans to develop a range of housing products on the site, including senior housing on the other three parcels. The development is expected to add a total of 350-plus units to the St. Michael community by its completion.