Andover to sell parcel for senior housing

Andover is selling property to a senior living facility developer.

The Andover Economic Development Authority (EDA) March 5 agreed to sell approximately 1.8 acres to Cherrywood Advanced Living for $215,000, which amounts to $2.74 a square foot, according to Community Development Director David Carlberg.

The development will be located in Andover Station North on the north side of 139th Avenue near the last eight-plex in the Parkside at Andover Station townhome development.

The next step is to finalize the purchase agreement and close on the sale. Carlberg said the goal is to close on the property sale in September.

Wendy Hulsebus, one of the Cherrywood owners, said they plan to break ground this fall and open next spring or summer.

The facility will include two, 10-unit resident houses that will be connected by a common room.

Each unit is a master suite and they can serve senior citizens in need of assisted care, memory care or skilled nursing.

Cherrywood will be able to accept those with dementia or Alzheimer’s, but it will not be a locked-down facility, Hulsebus said.

Each of the 10-unit wings will have a shared residential kitchen and a dining area, living room with fireplace, patio, spa, beauty shop, laundry room and connection to the great room.

This will be Cherrywood’s fourth facility with the others being in Big Lake, Richmond and St. Cloud.

Hulsebus said Cherrywood wants to develop in Andover because there is a good skilled nursing labor pool and it prefers smaller communities. The ownership group has expertise in health care, nursing homes, real estate development, operations and finance.

Andover EDA member Joyce Twistol is very excited to see this development move forward.

“I think it’s going to be wonderful,” she said. “The more facilities we have, the better we’ll be able to care for our aging population.”

Andover has a lot of young families, so Councilmember Julie Trude said this facility will give parents a chance to live closer to their children and grandchildren. From the plans she has seen, Cherrywood will offer seniors a home-type setting. They could decorate their own housing units anyway they want. They could even stop by the community kitchen to help make cookies.

Trude also likes that this development adds a quiet neighbor that would not really increase traffic and would be a buffer between the townhomes and future single-family homes that Capstone Homes is constructing.

The EDA would like the Cherrywood building to match the quality of the future single-family homes.

Councilmember Tony Howard would like to see more stone on the building exterior and more landscaping. Carlberg said Cherrywood will be modifying its design to include more brick.

Cherrywood will develop and initially own this building, but may someday sell it and lease the facility from the new owner, according to Hulsebus.

When Cherrywood brought its development proposal to the EDA last September, it asked if the EDA would be interested in owning the building and leasing it back to Cherrywood, but the majority of the EDA was not interested.

Howard said he had no interest in the EDA owning the facility. The EDA needs to focus on trying to sell more land to developers, he said.

“We’re not in the rental business,” Howard said.

Twistol would have preferred to see the EDA own the facility and lease it to Cherrywood because she believes it would have been a good financial investment.

City Administrator Jim Dickinson said the success of this business venture would have hinged on the lease terms with Cherrywood.

Dickinson believes Andover would have been the right market for the EDA to own this facility, but it came down to the EDA not wanting to take on this risk.

The land sale price was a point of discussion throughout the negotiations. Carlberg said it was a number that worked for both parties and the EDA is not subsidizing this development in any way.

The EDA is paying $30,000 for the utility relocation and $5,000 for the replatting because the Cherrywood property is on a site once planned for another eight-plex housing development, but Carlberg said this was factored into the land sale negotiations.

Howard said there was some give and take with the land sale price. One factor the city had to consider is the land had been available for some time and this was a good opportunity to bring high value jobs to the community, he said.

“The most important thing was bringing in the jobs,” Howard said.

Some of the other EDA Andover Station North land sales to private developers includes 0.75 acres to Blue Finn Pool and Spa for $183,660, 0.98 acres to Foundation Hill Montessori and Childcare for $188,558, 1.29 acres to Northpoint Plaza for $258,141, 2.27 acres to Thurston-DeShaw Funeral Home for $394,916, 1.99 acres to Dynamic Sealing in August 2007 for $311,728 and 4.5 acres to Dynamic Sealing in November 2010 for $519,569.

Eric Hagen is at [email protected]