For the past couple of years, the small first-ring suburb of Richfield has been the “hottest market in the Twin Cities”, according to the Star Tribune’s index. People rightly view this town as a more affordable extension of Minneapolis, with many walkable neighborhoods along with quick and easy access to most things – necessities, entertainment, restaurants, workplaces, and parks. If you (attempt to) drive along any of the side streets, you will likely witness many different housing construction projects, whether it’s merely adding a second story expansion to the formerly modest-sized entry-level home or a full-blown teardown and rebuild. It’s a situation reminiscent of nearby Edina’s recent wave of redevelopment, though on a much smaller scale given the lot sizes. The redevelopment isn’t just occurring with the homes in the city. With all the appeal that the city has maintained, developers are taking notice and jumping at the opportunity.
According to a Star Tribune article, there’s currently $200M worth of development currently in the works. Development projects include a $25M Jaguar – Land Rover dealership near the new and striking Audi dealership along 494, a Primrose School, Dunkin’ Donuts, and a few major housing projects including the $43M Chamberlain, which will have over 300 units. News of the housing developments spurred the more recent additions of a few new fast-casual restaurants in nearby Cedar Point Commons. And if all the construction noise from these projects weren’t enough, the 66th St corridor is in the midst of even more roundabouts replacing light-controlled intersections, which will hopefully wrap-up soon and not contradict that “ease-of-access" benefit that has drawn so many new residents.
So, Richfield is in high-demand and it’s getting some appealing, high price tag improvements. There’s a limit to the craziness though, given Richfield’s limited size and development location opportunities. Unless of course older buildings will continue to be torn down to make way for new ones. ‘Tis a sign of the times.
Photo By Seff0001 at English Wikipedia [Public domain], from Wikimedia Commons