By Joshua Schuetz
The City of Spring Grove was awarded $312,990 through an application to Minnesota DEED’s Redevelopment Grant, authored by CEDA. The award, which was announced in September, is the largest amount awarded to any community in greater Minnesota through the program.
The funding will be used to rebuild a mixed-use property in Spring Grove, which burned down last year, displacing one business and several residents.
“Right after that happened, we immediately went for state aid, and then we started writing this grant,” said CEDA team member Rebecca Charles, who authored the grant.
Following the fire, the property was purchased by the Spring Grove Real Estate Fund, a private, nonprofit investment organization in the city. The Spring Grove Real Estate Fund was formed through a partnership with SMIF led by CEDA team member Courtney Bergey-Swanson.
“They immediately began working on some ideas on what to do with the space, and what they came up with was a mixed use building,” Charles said. “We hope to have another hardware store in it, but we don’t have a tenant at this time.”
Six two bedroom apartments, four studio apartments and six one bedroom apartments will be included in the new building. A disaster for the city has transformed into a project that will add a new business and sixteen much-needed housing units to the community.
Charles said the community has fully supported the project and that residents are glad to know that something will be done with the property.
“As soon as the EDA knew we were doing something with it, they had a local artist create a mural on the plywood covering parts of the property, and everyone was very excited about the project,” Charles said. “DEED will inform us of the next steps and we will use this funding to move the project forward.”
The new building’s name is appropriate to its story: Føniks, which is the Norwegian word for phoenix-the bird that rises from the ashes.