Some may be surprised to learn that since last fall, a seven-story apartment complex with 192 units was being built in Owatonna’s industrial park.
At Rise Modular, the crews have been busy building the “volumetric modular” apartment building, which will be fully constructed in downtown St. Paul by stacking the finishing modules to form a building. David Rau, the vice president of business development for Rise Modular, said the “mods” are up to 72-feet long and already have everything from appliances to bathrooms installed inside.
“It’s basically like adult Legos,” Rau said of the way the building will be pieced together. “As you stack them together and they connect, the structure gets stronger.”
Rise Modular, with its corporate offices in downtown Minneapolis, is a new business that purchased the former Slidell building on Lemond Road in 2019 as the home base for the manufacturing operations. Once a module is constructed, they are transported to the apartment building or hotel where it will be lifted by a crane and stacked up with other modules to form the building.
Rau said that this particular project – the Alvera apartments in St. Paul – is not only the largest project Rise Modular has ever undertaken, but one of the largest module projects in the country to date.
“Our business is quite unique,” Rau said. “We are the only wood modular manufacturer in the central United States who are doing commercial buildings.”
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