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The groundbreaking for a two-phase residential/retail development has begun in Auburn Hills. Developer Moceri Cos. will first build two six-unit attached condominium buildings overlooking the Clinton River in the city’s Village Center area. The groundbreaking event for the condo project, called Riverwalk, was held Friday. The buildings should be completed by the end of this year.

The event was held in conjunction with the city’s Village Center dedication. The enhanced center, consisting mostly of retail, is expected to promote more retail and residential development.

The second development, currently in the planning stages, is Astoria Park, a mixed-use development with 4,500 sf of street level retail space along Auburn Road and four live-work lofts of up to 1,875-sf above. Eleven adjoining two-bedroom townhomes of up to 1,370-sf with two-car garages will front Squirrel Road.

Brian McBroom, director of community development, said the two projects fit in well with the city’s master plan. “They are the first new private developments in the Village Center area, and, in many ways, are even more important than the city’s own investment here because they send a message to other developers that this is a great place to invest,” McBroom said.

Auburn Hills is mostly made up of commercial developments, and it has been struggling to build a residential base, as well as rebuild its downtown area.

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