Anoka moves ahead on senior co-op agreement

The Anoka City Council has agreed to a letter of intent, outlining the city’s plans to work with Hearth Development on a senior housing cooperative.

Hearth is proposing Harrison Place, a 60-unit cooperative on city-owned land at the corner of Second Avenue and Harrison Street.

The city heard two different proposals for the site last month and opted to go ahead with Hearth.

The letter of intent identifies a purchase price of $295,000 for the city-owned property.

The city will also have to pay a real estate commission of $39,200 to Cassidy Turley, the broker of the property.

Marketing of the project, including community meetings, will start soon, according to Heather Harstad, a managing member with Hearth Development.

At least 70 percent of the units must be reserved before construction can start, under HUD financing regulations.

Proposed buy-ins for the cooperative range from $72,680 for a one-bedroom, one-bath unit to $129,800 for a two-bedroom, two-bath unit with a den. Residents then pay monthly fees that range from $1,000 to $2,200, covering insurance, property taxes and utilities.

When residents look to move out of the cooperative, they can sell their unit and get back their buy-in, plus a guaranteed increase for each year of ownership.

The building will be managed by Ebenezer, which manages 23 cooperatives.

The letter of intent will be in place through Dec. 1, 2014, which will give time for the developer to submit a site plan for approval this fall.

Economic Development Manager Erik Thorvig said, at this time, the city would also consider purchase and development agreements.

Harstad said the developer also has plans to open a marketing office in Anoka, where some of the finishes for co-op housing units would be on display.

“I think residents of Anoka and the surrounding areas will be excited about this property,” said Councilmember Mark Freeburg. “You can’t beat that spot.”

He also said he is glad the building will not be identical to the condo building that will be across the street.

“It will look old and it will look historic,” Freeburg said. “I’m excited they don’t match. It will make it more fun.”

Mandy Moran Froemming is at [email protected]