The mixed-use Hamline Station development is officially complete, fully leased on the 108-unit residential side and seeking commercial tenants to overlook the Green Line light rail transit station at Hamline Avenue in St. Paul.
Though only one commercial tenant has signed a lease so far, Minneapolis developer Project for Pride in Living fielded 600 applications from people who wanted to live in the pair of four-story, mixed-income buildings at 1305 and 1309 W. University Ave.
The buildings cater to households making 50 to 60 percent of the area median income and offers 14 units for formerly homeless people making 30 percent of the median income. The apartments, ranging from studios to three bedrooms, rent for between $550 and $1,178 per month.
So far, Minneapolis-based Project for Pride in Living has secured a commercial lease with AT&T, which will open a retail store in the building at the corner of Hamline and University avenues in the coming weeks. In full, the 14,000-square feet of commercial space can fit up to seven tenants.
A couple of potential restaurant tenants have shown interest in filling some of the remaining retail space, but no other leases have been secured, planners said Tuesday.
Stakeholders including St. Paul Mayor Chris Coleman, City Council President Russ Stark and Metropolitan Council member Jon Commers spoke Tuesday at a grand opening celebration, underlining the $28 million project’s significance in the city and region.
“I think the statement that we made here at Hamline Station … is that St. Paul continues to be a community where all can thrive, where all are welcome [and] where all are valued,” Coleman said.
The project faced delays last year as Project for Pride in Living wrestled through what the organization’s president and CEO, Paul Williams, described as “complex” funding structure.
Nearly $2.1 million of the funding came from tax increment financing agreements from the city. The Met Council granted $3.2 million to help with the project, which was built on a former used-car lot and required soil cleanup.
The development also received $1.7 million in loans from a federal low-interest HOME Investment Partnership Program, which are administered by the city. The Minnesota Housing Finance Agency contributed $5.7 million to the project.
U.S. Bank offered the largest chunk of financing, buying about $15 million in tax credits and offering a $15 million construction loan for the project.