Anoka to help townhome neighborhood

A townhome neighborhood in need of help just might get it from the city of Anoka.

The Anoka City Council has agreed to hold a public hearing to create a housing improvement area at Rivers Edge Townhomes.

Creating this housing improvement area would allow the city to complete a final lift of asphalt on the association’s private roads. The neighborhood is at the southwest corner of Cutters Grove Avenue and Highway 10.

The road work has been left undone since 2007 when the developer went out of business, said Darin Berger, coordinator for the Anoka Housing and Redevelopment Authority.

The council supports getting involved to complete the paving in the neighborhood.

Councilmember Mark Freeburg said before this area was redeveloped with townhomes, it was a bad area for Anoka.

“I prayed something would happen there and it did,” said Freeburg. “It’s nice that we can step in and solidify this issue for them.”

Mayor Phil Rice agreed, saying it is a wise investment for both the city and the homeowners to have these streets properly paved.

The $40,000 paving project would be financed by the city and then paid by the individual homeowners.

The cost to provide the final lift of asphalt will be added to each unit’s property taxes as a special assessment, protecting the city’s investment, said Berger.

The debt will be repaid over 10 years, with zero interest.

This is the first time Anoka had stepped in to do work in this kind of situation, Berger said.

The city is able to do so through a law enacted by the Minnesota Legislature in 1996, which provides cities with the means to help homeowners associations and the owners of housing units within those associations pay for improvements to common areas of a development.

The city has received the required petition from the minimum of 50 percent of the homeowners in the townhouse development. Sixteen of the 29 homeowners signed the petition.

The public hearing is scheduled for Monday, April 15.

Mandy Moran Froemming is at [email protected]