New Blaine development in the works

For the past couple of months, people driving through the intersection of Highway 65 and 109th Avenue have noticed a lot of activity on the southwest corner.

The former gas station site will be home of a new 8,500 square-foot multi-tenant building. Mattress Firm will be the anchor tenant, along with other businesses including Starbucks and Pacific Dental, according to Steven Alafazanos, vice president of development for Win Development, LLC.

The Florida-based developer has worked in multiple communities across the country, including some sites in Minnesota, Alafazanos said. They have helped numerous other retail tenants such as Chipotle, Panda Express and Walgreen’s find new locations.

Alafazanos said Mattress Firm was looking for new expansion opportunities and Blaine was one of its target areas. It has another location near Northtown Mall.

“It’s a very good high-traveled intersection,” Alafazanos said on why the southwest corner of Highway 65 and 109th Avenue was chosen.

Shingobee Builders, headquartered in Loretto, is the construction company Win Development is working with for this project.

The gas station was removed in April. Because of a previous gas spill on the site, soil cleanup was necessary. According to Shingobee, 5,000 cubic yards of contaminated soil was removed and replaced with clean soils.

Wenck Associates Inc. is the environmental consultant for this project, according to Alafazanos.

Buildings will soon start to go up. Alafazanos said construction will be completed by this fall and the building turned over to the tenants for interior work to be done before opening for business.

There was already an entrance off 108th Avenue, but a new right-in, right-out access on 109th Avenue will be added, according to Shingobee.

“Everything has gone smoothly,” Alafazanos said.

All these uses are permitted under the city code, so the development company did not need to come before the Blaine City Council for any approvals, said Bryan Schafer, Blaine’s planning and community development director. It instead only needed to work with staff from the city of Blaine, Anoka County and the Coon Creek Watershed District to get permit approvals for the site work and new access.

“We’re just tickled pink to see that site clean,” Mayor Tom Ryan said.

Eric Hagen is at [email protected]