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EDEN PRAIRIE, MN-United Properties recently bought 51 acres, which it plans to develop as the commercial portion of the mixed-used Hennepin Village, a 170-acre project that includes about 700 homes. United Properties proposes a 500,000-sf mixed-use business park on the site, according to a company spokeswoman.

The uses will emphasize office and industrial buildings, although there will be some retail as well, according to United officials. Among the attractions of the site are that it is close to the Flying Cloud Airport and has a good view of the Minnesota River.

United Properties bought the land from locally based Pemtom Land Co., the master developer of Hennepin Village. The purchase price was not disclosed. United Properties plans to build infrastructure on the site and market it next year with hopes of breaking ground on projects in 2006, according to company officials.

Three years ago, Minneapolis-based CSM Corp. tried to develop a one-million-sf complex on 70 acres, but found land prices too high and a lack of demand. The industrial market is 12 to 18 months ahead of the office market recovery, says Jason Meyer, vice president of United Properties’ industrial brokerage. The Southwest submarket, where the Hennepin Village development is located, is one of two submarkets that Meyer anticipates will soon be ready for speculative office showroom development.

The total vacancy rate for industrial properties in the Twin Cities is 15.5%, according to a recent report on the industrial market from United Properties.

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