Residential construction in St. Michael and Albertville is picking up momentum after a several year lull in development projects. And a lot of the action has been moving ideas that have long been on paper into full, three-dimensional reality.
The two cities are seeing different types of residential growth; Albertville, with 24 residential building permits so far this year, has seen more infilling of existing developments, most notably in the second addition of Hunter’s Pass, located off MacIver Avenue, which was established last year.
St. Michael, with 28 residential building permits so far this year, is building on the success of the last year’s new Cascades Development near St. Michael Elementary, with three new residential developments in the works.
The furthest along of the three is a new neighborhood under construction through the national builder D.R. Horton, the same builder who recently completed the Cascades development. This new neighborhood, named Morgendal, is located on the northwest corner of County Rd. 35 and 35th St., in the St. Michael Elementary school boundary. The neighborhood is platted for 73 lots, with 53 planned for the first phase. St. Michael city administrator, Steve Bot, said the developer plans to have 25 detached townhome units and the remaining for single- family homes, with the first two models planned to break ground later this fall. This new development will also include a park and playground space.
Another new St. Michael development will be named Tributary Crossing, to be located on the land that formerly housed holes 19-27 of the Fox Hollow Golf Course, on the west side of County Road 36. Bot said the final plat calls for 78 single-family lots, with 38 being built in phase one of the development.
Houses in Tributary Crossing have a price range starting in the $400,000s. While located in the city of St. Michael, this neighborhood is within the boundaries of the Elk River Area School District (ISD 728). Bot said Tradition Homes will be a part of this neighborhood, but other builders may also be involved. He said the development’s infrastructure is currently in the works and they should see its first home built in the spring of 2016.
Lastly for St. Michael, Lakeview Development Company is planning a 130 lot single-family development called Lake Shore Preserve, located off the west side of County Rd. 19 on the city’s southern end. Known among locals as the Clem Becker farmland, this land is adjacent to Gonz Lake.
Justin Bannwarth of Lakeview Development said the new neighborhood would have many lots that overlook this lake or other natural wetland areas, making it a scenic space for homes.
The development has some natural features that divide east/west, he said, with most lots on the eastern end planned to be around 70 feet wide and some backing up to natural wetland areas. Most lots on the western end of the development will be larger, 100 foot wide lots and many will back up to wetlands or Gonz Lake. The lake is suitable for canoes and kayaks, and plans are in place to have a communal dock for residents to access the lake. Bannwarth estimates home prices for this new development to be in the $300,000-$450,000 range for the 70-foot wide lots and more in the $500,000-$600,000 for the larger lots.
Bannwarth said they are currently selecting a small group of 3-5 preferred builders for the development, and are especially interested in custom home builders who have experience in this part of the metro area. These builders, not Lakeshore Development, will be the ones to market the lots and homes to the public. The developers plan to hit the ground running in the spring of 2016 to get Lake Shore Preserve’s roads, utilities, earthwork and other infrastructure in place.
Bot said the stretch of land where Lake Shore Preserve is planned, along the west edge of County Road 19, is just one of the undeveloped parcels that is ready to be developed, at least from an infrastructure standpoint.
And for Albertville’s part, city administrator Adam Nafstad said the city routinely receives calls on the possibility of a new residential development on the open parcel of land across from Middle School West. Additionally, the Towne Lakes development still has space for two new additions. Taken as a whole, it appears there may be new developments and new homes springing up around STMA for a long time to come.