By Kevin Collison
Construction on the $45 million Uptown Lofts project is scheduled to begin late next spring, a development that’s expected to transform the struggling corner of Valentine Road and Broadway into a neighborhood asset.
The project being developed by Sunflower Development Group, a big downtown developer, was granted a 25-year property tax abatement last week by the Planned Industrial Expansion Authority, the last public step required before construction.
It already has been approved at City Hall.
Besides providing 223 units of market-rate housing, the development will help solve two long-time problems in the area. It will replace the underperforming Uptown Shoppes retail strip and provide 380 parking spaces to the Uptown Theater across the street.
For years, residents of the Valentine neighborhood to the west have complained about the lack of parking at the Uptown Theater, forcing patrons to park on their residential streets.
The development plan calls for 47,720 square-feet of existing retail to be renovated with an additional 4,680 square-feet of new commercial space built. Much of the renovated retail space will be used as a clubhouse and other amenities for apartment residents.
The ground floor will include the retail/amenity space and parking. Two levels of parking built above it for a total of 789 spaces. The apartment floors will be on levels four through seven. TreanorHL is the architect.
The Uptown Lofts redevelopment long-range plan also calls for building a 92-room boutique hotel at the corner of Broadway and Valentine, but no project is currently in the works.
In a nod to the Valentine neighborhood, the taller portion of the Uptown Lofts development will be on the north and east sides of the property. A swimming pool and patio for residents will be above the garage on the west side.
The apartment mix will be 90 studio units, 88 one-bedroom and 45 two-bedroom. Monthly rents for studios will be $854; one-bedrooms range from $935- to $1,341, and two-bedrooms will go from $1,604- to $1,713 per month.
The Uptown Lofts will be close to other significant apartment developments in recent years including the Ambassador next door at the corner of Broadway and Knickerbocker Place and the Valentine immediately south of the Uptown Theater on Broadway.
It’s also a few blocks from a redevelopment project at 39th and Main that’s renovating the historic Netherlands Hotel and Monarch Storage building into 144 apartments.
The PIEA board approved a full property tax abatement for the Uptown Lofts project, 10 years at 100 percent and 15 years at 50 percent. The city also is providing incentives including the remaining existing revenues from the Uptown Community Improvement District and the city’s share of the Hotel-Motel tax.
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