The first residences at HIVE@155, a $15 million, mixed-use development in the St. Paul Quarter, are slated to open this summer.
Developer Dan Morgenstern, who already has developed buildings in the area, envisions a neighborhood focused on energy and innovation with an emphasis on up-and-coming businesses and the arts.
“The creativity makes it a fun and interesting neighborhood,” Morgenstern said.
The first phase of the project consists of 54 industrial studio loft apartments, from 575 to 980 square feet. Leases start at $675 a month. There is also first floor retail space.
Models are available for viewing, with the apartments ready to move in this June, he said.
The response has been good, Morgenstern said, noting 16 people have already signed pre-leases for units.
Morgenstern started the rehabilitation of the two historic buildings on St. Paul Street last year.
Phase two, expected to begin later this year, includes some 35 residential units. They will be mostly studios but include a few one- and two-bedroom units.
The second phase will include a first floor lobby, with a leasing office and an on-site employee who will be able to accept packages for residents. In addition to the lobby, the first floor across the two buildings will feature retail tenants. Split Batch Brewery Co. will occupy part of the space.
Split Batch, a microbrewery/coffee locale with food, won the Retailent Rochester competition, which gave the business free rent for a year to help it launch.
Morgenstern is in talks with two other retailers.
The buildings, totaling 55,000 square feet, have been designated as historically significant by the state Historic Preservation Office. The structures were built in the late 1880s and housed businesses such as garment manufacturers and tool and die shops.
The units in phase one feature high ceilings, large windows, brick walls and exposed columns. Several original industrial doors were used.
Amenities include laundry facilities on every floor and secured access to the building with a fob, key and phone. Off-street parking is available.
Morgenstern worked with a number of local firms on the project, including Construction Management Services of Rochester and Smith + Associates Architects PLLC.
The simple design and open concept of the lofts, along with competitively priced rents and fast Internet service, would likely appeal to someone who is seeking an urban location, he said. Its city location, which makes it easy to use a bicycle to get around, as well as its proximity to public transportation, also makes it desirable for urban dwellers.
While the main demographic targeted is single people in their 20s and 30s, Morgenstern has been pleasantly surprised that people 50 to 60 have shown interest in the units.
Morgenstern’s Hive Village is part of a four-block area around St. Paul and Andrews streets in downtown’s St. Paul Corridor, a neighborhood of businesses, restaurants and apartment buildings.
Morgenstern owns other buildings that make up the Hive Village.
The first building—Hive@116—was developed 10 years ago. Morgenstern and his wife live on the third floor, and the building also has one-bedroom lofts and first-floor retail space, including the Hive offices.
There is also Hive@Andrews, which Morgenstern converted to a mixed-use property. Both of those buildings are full, he said.
The Hive Village already has generated buzz, especially with its exterior murals, created on entire sides of the buildings by street artists from around the world. Travelers from other cities have come to the area to see the works, Morgenstern said.
A third phase at Hive@155 will involve two smaller buildings at the back of the property, but no definite plans have been made for those structures, Morgenstern said. He has no plans for the development of additional buildings until the Hive@155 project is done, he said.
He is interested in creating something that will keep that part of the city vibrant.
“I’d like to leave an imprint and make a contribution to the neighborhood,” he said.
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