Launch Slideshow

Developer Village Green struck a deal with the city of Minneapolis, adjacent condominium owners, local lenders, and private partners to redevelop an unsightly vacant lot into Mill District City Apartments.

Case Study: A Good Neighbor in Minneapolis

Case Study: A Good Neighbor in Minneapolis

  • Developer Village Green struck a deal with the city of Minneapolis, adjacent condominium owners, local lenders, and private partners to redevelop an unsightly vacant lot into Mill District City Apartments.

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    Developer Village Green struck a deal with the city of Minneapolis, adjacent condominium owners, local lenders, and private partners to redevelop an unsightly vacant lot into Mill District City Apartments.

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    Karen Melvin

    Developer Village Green struck a deal with the city of Minneapolis, adjacent condominium owners, local lenders, and private partners to redevelop an unsightly vacant lot into Mill District City Apartments.

  • Throughout the building, Traco windows feature a SHGC average of 0.311 and a U-value of 0.35 or better to trap heat during cold Minnesota winters and keep it out in the summer. 800.837.7002. www.traco.com.Glidden low-VOC paints and Shaw Green Label Plus carpet and wood-look laminate flooring were chosen with indoor air quality in mind. Glidden: 800.454.3336. www.glidden.com. Shaw: 800.441.7429. www.shawfloors.com.

    http://www.residentialarchitect.com/Images/tmpD98%2Etmp_tcm48-961882.jpg

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    Throughout the building, Traco windows feature a SHGC average of 0.311 and a U-value of 0.35 or better to trap heat during cold Minnesota winters and keep it out in the summer. 800.837.7002. www.traco.com.Glidden low-VOC paints and Shaw Green Label Plus carpet and wood-look laminate flooring were chosen with indoor air quality in mind. Glidden: 800.454.3336. www.glidden.com. Shaw: 800.441.7429. www.shawfloors.com.

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    Karen Melvin

    Windows
    Throughout the building, Traco windows feature a SHGC average of 0.311 and a U-value of 0.35 or better to trap heat during cold Minnesota winters and keep it out in the summer. 800.837.7002. www.traco.com. Glidden low-VOC paints and Shaw Green Label Plus carpet and wood-look laminate flooring were chosen with indoor air quality in mind. Glidden: 800.454.3336. www.glidden.com. Shaw: 800.441.7429. www.shawfloors.com.

  • Flat-panel cabinetry with stainless steel hardware, movable granite islands, built-in wine racks, and track lighting add a fresh and modern style to the kitchens. Whirlpool Energy Star appliances include stainless steel dishwashers and refrigerators. To keep water use low, the aerators in the 2.2-gpm Kohler Coralis faucets were swapped with 1.5-gpm models. Whirlpool: 866.698.2538. www.whirlpool.com.  Kohler: 800.456.4537. www.kohler.com.

    http://www.residentialarchitect.com/Images/tmpD99%2Etmp_tcm48-961883.jpg

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    Flat-panel cabinetry with stainless steel hardware, movable granite islands, built-in wine racks, and track lighting add a fresh and modern style to the kitchens. Whirlpool Energy Star appliances include stainless steel dishwashers and refrigerators. To keep water use low, the aerators in the 2.2-gpm Kohler Coralis faucets were swapped with 1.5-gpm models. Whirlpool: 866.698.2538. www.whirlpool.com. Kohler: 800.456.4537. www.kohler.com.

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    Karen Melvin

    Kitchens
    Flat-panel cabinetry with stainless steel hardware, movable granite islands, built-in wine racks, and track lighting add a fresh and modern style to the kitchens. Whirlpool Energy Star appliances include stainless steel dishwashers and refrigerators. To keep water use low, the aerators in the 2.2-gpm Kohler Coralis faucets were swapped with 1.5-gpm models. Whirlpool: 866.698.2538. www.whirlpool.com. Kohler: 800.456.4537. www.kohler.com.

  • The 30-foot-long living wall leading to the two-story lobby provides natural air filtration, cooling properties, and a year-round indoor/outdoor connection. The Versa wall from Gsky features a trickle-down watering system that can be installed using a hidden water tank and pump, and plants can be easily maintained and replaced for seasonal updates, the firm says. 888.708.4759. www.gsky.com.

    http://www.residentialarchitect.com/Images/tmpD97%2Etmp_tcm48-961881.jpg

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    The 30-foot-long living wall leading to the two-story lobby provides natural air filtration, cooling properties, and a year-round indoor/outdoor connection. The Versa wall from Gsky features a trickle-down watering system that can be installed using a hidden water tank and pump, and plants can be easily maintained and replaced for seasonal updates, the firm says. 888.708.4759. www.gsky.com.

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    Karen Melvin

    Lobby
    The 30-foot-long living wall leading to the two-story lobby provides natural air filtration, cooling properties, and a year-round indoor/outdoor connection. The Versa wall from Gsky features a trickle-down watering system that can be installed using a hidden water tank and pump, and plants can be easily maintained and replaced for seasonal updates, the firm says. 888.708.4759. www.gsky.com.

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    Karen Melvin

    Bathrooms
    Kohler 1.28-gpf WaterSense-certified toilets and 1.5-gpm faucets in a variety of models help to conserve water in the building’s 207 bathrooms, while hot-water recirculating lines wrapped with Johns Manville Micro-Lok insulation minimize the amount of water wasted while waiting for hot water to be delivered. Panasonic Energy Star–labeled fans deter moisture in the bathroom and use 70% less energy than standard models. Kohler: 800.456.4537. www.kohler.com. Johns Manville: 800.654.3103. www.jm.com. Panasonic: 866.292.7292. www.panasonic.com.

  • The projects insulation package includes blown-in Fibertek fiberglass insulation with a Dupont Tyvek weather barrier that was added at the builders panelization factory. A Honeywell programmable thermostat in each unit helps residents control heating and cooling costs, for which they are responsible. Fibertek: 877.682.4448. www.fibertekinsulation.com. Dupont Tyvek: 800.448.9835. www.tyvek.com. Honeywell: 877.271.8620. www.honeywell.com.

    http://www.residentialarchitect.com/Images/tmpD94%2Etmp_tcm48-961878.jpg

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    The projects insulation package includes blown-in Fibertek fiberglass insulation with a Dupont Tyvek weather barrier that was added at the builders panelization factory. A Honeywell programmable thermostat in each unit helps residents control heating and cooling costs, for which they are responsible. Fibertek: 877.682.4448. www.fibertekinsulation.com. Dupont Tyvek: 800.448.9835. www.tyvek.com. Honeywell: 877.271.8620. www.honeywell.com.

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    Karen Melvin

    Building Envelope/Energy Usage
    The project’s insulation package includes blown-in Fibertek fiberglass insulation with a Dupont Tyvek weather barrier that was added at the builder’s panelization factory. A Honeywell programmable thermostat in each unit helps residents control heating and cooling costs, for which they are responsible. Fibertek: 877.682.4448. www.fibertekinsulation.com. Dupont Tyvek: 800.448.9835. www.tyvek.com. Honeywell: 877.271.8620. www.honeywell.com.

The NGBS-Bronze project features a long list of high-performance products and technologies, including low-VOC paints, recycled-content flooring, low-flow plumbing fixtures, 96% efficient Lochinvar hot water heaters, daylighting sensors, and programmable thermostats. Tenants pay for their own utilities and each unit has its own gas, water, and electric meters, a move that the developer hopes will lead to greater conservation. “Village Green really tried to get out the message that each person is in control of their own energy and water use,” Naylor says. “Studies have shown that when this is the case, people conserve more.”

A favorite feature for many tenants is the 24,500-square-foot courtyard space with sunken rock gardens, private cabanas, and water features. It also acts as a stormwater reservoir, with a large culvert that filters and stores runoff until it flows into the storm sewer.

In order to appeal to a range of clients, the building offers more than 30 different floor plans from 500 to 1,400 square feet. To enhance flexibilty, many units have modular features such as mobile granite islands and bedrooms that can be set off from living spaces with oversized sliding glass doors or translucent glass panels. Monthly rent runs from about $1,000 for a studio to $2,600 for a penthouse, Balsis says.

While the building’s green credentials set it apart from typical multifamily housing, much of the project’s sustainable success is rooted in its location, which helped earn 25% of the building’s 280 NGBS points for its high-density infill plan with convenient access to public transportation and proximity to offices, shops, and restaurants. According to Camp, demand for close-in living is driving a resurgence of projects centered around mass transit.

“We’re not designing projects for the suburbs anymore,” Camp says. “Our clients are focused on urban infill because of the growing demand by people who want to live downtown.”