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A $22 million redevelopment proposal for 43rd & Upton Avenue South in Minneapolis

Mark Dwyer, an entrepreneur who lives in Minneapolis' Linden Hills neighborhood, sees dramatic changes in store for the corner of 43rd and Upton Avenue South in Minneapolis.

Dwyer, who also serves as the president of the Linden Hills Business Association, presented a proposal earlier this month to the neighborhood group, for a $22 million mixed-use development that he's dubbed Linden Corner, which has a website.

The mid-rise development would have 34 condos plus a restaurant and commercial and office space on the ground level.

Linden Corner would replace the Famous Dave's restaurant on the site--the location where the barbecue business started--along with a nearby office building.

Dwyer says that the building will stand out for quality materials and details such as a decorative cornice, upper-floor step-backs and high ceilings. "We're designing it in such a way that it'll read three floors instead of five," he says.

The first-time developer has been working on the plan for several years, which he plans to make as green as possible, though he says those specifics are still coming together. 

Already he's found plenty of interested buyers for the condos. "There's a huge need for this type of housing in the neighborhood," which he adds is especially appealing to empty-nesters who want to downsize without leaving Linden Hills.
Part of what makes the development in this location ideal is its proximity to the 50th and France business district, Uptown and the Lake Harriet Band Shell plus bike, bus and walking paths. 

In developing the plans, Dwyer is working with TEA2 Architects, who are based nearby, along with a civil engineer and landscaper who are both also neighborhood-based. "We're as local as we can be and we really care," he says. 

In the neighborhood, "There's such an opportunity to tie this corner in better with the other three corners," he says, adding, "That's what this does. It really completes the energy for the corners."

Dwyer hopes to break ground within a year, so that the place would be occupied by the fall of 2013.

A commenter on an online forum called Minnescraper Forums agrees that the development could have a positive impact on the corner. The user, who goes by nmhood, writes, "I believe we should concentrate on tactical, piecemeal urbanism--not large downtown residential projects. Not to say we can't have both, but I feel there is still a higher demand for this Linden Hills-style development in Minneapolis."

Source: Mark Dwyer, developer, and Minnescraper Forums
Writer: Anna Pratt

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