Hennepin County, Thor plan to transform North Minneapolis intersection

Hennepin County intends to buy two Minneapolis-owned parcels at Penn and Plymouth Avenues in North Minneapolis, which it expects will trigger about $100 million in new development.

The proposed deal, which involves the southeast and southwest corners of the intersection, is on the Minneapolis Planning Commission’s July 21 meeting agenda. The
agenda doesn’t include any details about terms of the sale. The county is trying to expand NorthPoint Health & Wellness Center (on the northwest corner).

NorthPoint is a private nonprofit health center and human service agency that serves North Minneapolis. The facility is out of space and facing increased demand for its services, according to Hennepin County. Patient visits increased 67 percent between 2006 and 2015.

The Hennepin County Board of Commissioners, at a special meeting July 28, will consider several actions related to the project including plans to buy the land and relocate the Estes Funeral home, which is now on the northwest corner of the intersection, into a new building on the southwest corner. The county also plans to spend up to $830,000 to hire architect Collaborative Design Group, based in Minneapolis, to design NorthPoint’s expansion.

The county is working on a plan to build a $66 million, 100,000-square-foot expansion that would be leased to the clinic. It will be built in two 50,000-square- foot phases, with one going on land where the funeral home now sits and one replacing a 27,000-square-foot office building owned by NorthPoint on the north side of the existing clinic.

The southeast corner of redevelopment will become new headquarters for Thor Construction Inc. Thor plans to develop a $30 million office and retail building that will be incorporated with a 450-stall parking structure that is expected to serve the entire area.

Fridley-based Thor, announced in May that it would relocate its headquarters from Fridley into part of the new 92,000-square-foot building. Thor’s project was designed by Minneapolis-based Lawal Scott Erickson Architects Inc.

The Estes Funeral Chapel, at 2200 Plymouth Ave. N., has an estimated market value of $570,000, according to property tax records. It isn’t clear what Hennepin County has offered to pay Estes for its site or how much it will cost to build a new home for the funeral chapel.

Hennepin County hopes to have the NorthPoint expansion by late 2019 or early 2020.

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