The Anoka City Council has approved a permit to move a more than 100-year-old house a few blocks up a street in the city.
The conditional use permit for Erik and Amanda Skogquist to move the home from 210 Monroe St. to 314 Monroe St. was unanimously approved by the council.
The Skogquists are purchasing the home from the Anoka’s Housing and Redevelopment Authority for $1.
As part of the approval of the conditional use permit, the council needed to determine that the house is similar in character to the neighborhood to which it is being moved, according to Planning Director Carolyn Braun.
“In essence it’s in the same neighborhood,” Braun said. “It’s now being moved closer to the Christian Hill Historic District and, of course, the house that is being moved is historic in character.”
The Skogquists are planning to move into the home and renovate it while living there.
“We get to take care of a house that’s not really a great house anymore,” Erik Skogquist said. “Growing up in that neighborhood it’s always been a problem one. I guess it worked out the way it is supposed to.”
The house won’t be moved until spring, he said, and an uninhabitable home at 314 will also be demolished at the new location.
The house does need to be rehabilitated. It was most recently used as a four-plex and it will now be a single-family home, one of the conditions of the purchase from the HRA.
The HRA purchased the vacant home last year for $190,000 as an investment in the land as part of a long-term redevelopment strategy around the Sandburg Educational Center and former Riverway Clinic, which is also owned by the HRA along with the former Goodrich Pharmacy site.
On the recommendation of the planning commission, the council also allowed an extension for the completion of a garage and paved driveway on the property to December 2014.
Whenever you put up a new house you need to put up a garage and pave the driveway, according to Braun.
“Because this is a little different and the Skogquists are moving one in, the Skogquists indicated that they need to move the house and get in it and start working on it,” Braun said.
Several members of the council gave words of encouragement to the Skogquists for undertaking this project.
“I think it’s just marvelous what you are doing here,” said Councilmember Carl Anderson. “I think it’s going to be a real asset to the city to save this fine old structure and put it up there. I really commend you. It’s going to be a lot of hard work.”
Skogquist said that while the project will be expensive, it is reasonable compared to going out and finding a similar sized home in the city. Currently the house at 210 Monroe St. is 2,600 square feet on the main floor and upper level.
The house is structurally in good shape and had been well kept, he said.
Skogquist told the council their first plan of action once the house is moved will be to address rotting molding around some of the windows and replace the unnecessary doors with windows now that it will be a single family home.
“I applaud you on this,” said Councilmember Jeff Weaver. “This will be a monumental task but it will be so rewarding when it’s finished.”
Mandy Moran Froemming is at firstname.lastname@example.org