St. Michael council update on RISE Modular apartments, Town Center Park

By Sam Jones,, April 24, 2021

At its April 13 meeting, the St. Michael City Council discussed a slew of development projects, including the RISE Modular apartments, Town Center Park and Creekside West. See adjacent story in this week’s paper for an update on the environmental impacts of the Lakeshore Park development.

The council also heard from Wright County Sheriff’s Office Deputy Tyler Ellison, who noted there hasn’t been much change in calls in the last few weeks. Ellison brought attention to the fact that it is officially construction season, and drivers should stay alert while on the road and pay attention to signs for alternative routes, road conditions and the like.

As the city gets closer to the opening of Town Center Park for the summer, there were various actions to be taken by the council. First, the council approved of hiring a seasonal park manager to oversee concessions and scheduling during the summer months. Interviews for this position are expected to be held in early May. The council also approved of hiring seasonal concession park attendants, and hope to have two staff members at the stand during concession hours.

The council also approved of the proposed sponsorship signage for the park, which Niche Visual has been working on with Community Development Director Marc Weigle since being subcontracted. Public Works is hoping to have these signs installed by June 5, which is set to be the grand opening of the Splash Pad.

The council also approved an interim use permit (IUP) for What’s the Scoop?, an ice cream shop coming to downtown St. Michael this summer. The IUP ultimately allows What’s the Scoop? to serve their ice cream in their outdoor patio areas.

Weigle also brought it to the council’s attention that the developers behind the proposed RISE Modular apartments are applying for a TIF district, which would require at least 20% of their units to be income restricted at 50% of the median income. Weigle said that the developers are “not even close” to being able to finish this project without additional fee reductions and TIFs, despite the fact that St. Michael is consistent in its fees with other area cities.

The council was largely uncomfortable with extending beyond their typical practices, so a future workshop or discussion on the topic is likely.

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