Block 52

Two major developments during the last two weeks of December have added life to the Block 52 project located in the heart of Monticello’s downtown.

One is the sale and closing of the Preferred Title building at 113 W. Broadway, which gives the city 83 percent ownership of the block, which within the next two years could be home to a commercial and residential development with potential views of the Mississippi River.

The second is the awarding of a Transportation Economic Development (TED) grant that will pump $469,000 into the Broadway Street/Highway 25 intersection in downtown Monticello.

The City’s economic development authority took action in November to enter into a purchase agreement to obtain the Preferred Title building at 113 W. Broadway, as well as the adjacent tenant space occupied by Elevated Wellness.

The sale price was $528,000. The EDA closed on the sale in mid-December. Under the agreement, the EDA will pay relocation costs for both Preferred Title and Elevated Wellness.

The EDA has entered into a Preliminary Development Agreement with Deephaven Development, LLC, to construct a mixed-use development on Block 52.

Deephaven Development is the company that is building the almost 300 apartments at the Pointes of Cedar project along Chelsea Road and Edmonson Avenue on the southeast side of town.

The TED grant awarded to Monticello is one of eight grants awarded to Minnesota communities on December 21. In all, $18 million was awarded in TED grants.

The $469,000 awarded to Monticello will be used to improve the Highway 25/Broadway Street (County Road 75) intersection in downtown Monticello to eliminate a larger-vehicle bottleneck and support redevelopment in downtown. That redevelopment support is the Block 52 project. This Fall, City Engineer Matt Leonard told members of the Monticello City Council that if the grant monies were awarded, construction activities would be scheduled to be completed simultaneously with the redevelopment of Block 52.

MnDOT stated that the grant may help bring 110 new jobs to downtown Monticello.

Rachel Leonard, Monticello city administrator, said the initial indication is for upper-floor residential units with main-floor commercial space within Deephaven’s Block 52 proposal, that in fact would bring a potential for 110 jobs to the development.

Mayor Lloyd Hilgart told The Monticello Times last week that many of those jobs could be office jobs with a company that could locate to the development. Other jobs would potentially come in the restaurant and retail sectors.

On a related note, members of a sub-committee of the City’s Industrial & Economic Development Committee has met with the owners of a restaurant within the region about locating a restaurant within the Block 52 development, as well as within the Pointes of Cedar project. 

Reach Jeff Hage at jeff.hage@apgecm.com

Editor

Jeff Hage is the managing editor of the Monticello Times. He majored in journalism at the University of Wisconsin- Eau Claire.

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