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ST PAUL, MN-Centex is close to getting the go ahead to build TheUpper Landing, a 660-unit multi-housing project thatwill be one of the largest multi-family housing projectsever in Downtown St. Paul.

This week Centex hopes to work out the final detailsof a redevelopment agreement with the city, says Roger Fraley, project manager for theCentex’s Midwest region. The deal will then go beforethe city’s Housing and Redevelopment Agency laternext month.

“This is our No. 1 project in the Midwest,” saysFraley. Centex, one of the largest housing developersin the nation and second only to Rottlund in the TwinCities, built $110 million of local multi-family housing inthe last year.

The $140 million multi-housing project is proposed fora six-acre area along the Mississippi River bounded byChestnut, the High Bridge and the new Shepherd Road.About half of the units will be rental, with rentsranging from $700 to $2,500 a month, and the other halfwill be condos, ranging in price from $140,000 to$700,000.

The project will also include 23,000 sf ofretail space, most likely to consist of a coffee shop,convenience store, small bank or other types ofservice businesses.

Through a tax increment financing district, the citywill help build parking that will provide two spacesper unit, or about 1,320 slots, Fraley says.Once the deal is approved, Centex will begin an $11million clean up of the site, part of which will bepaid for by state agencies. The site once housed a scrap yard and a grainfacility.

Preparing the site, including clean up, soilremediation and building the street and sewerinfrastructure, will take nearly a year, Fraley says.Assuming construction begins in September of 2001, theinitial phases of the project could be ready late nextyear or early 2002. Centex does not need to pre-sella minimum number of units before beginningconstruction, according to Fraley.

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