Rebound Real Estate and partners applied for and received approvals of: preliminary plat, rezoning of two parcels, tax increment financing, and final plat between June 2021 and April 2022. The approved development, known as Kraewood, is located on property previously known as the Paulson Christmas Tree Farm.
The development will create 30 residential lots comprised of single family, two-family, a tri-plex and an apartment complex. Final plans were approved by the City in 2022 and the project is being developed by Sumac Properties, LLC to construct a 106-unit apartment building, one tri-plex, two twin homes, and 22 single-family homes on the site along with other site improvements such as open/recreation space; storm water management facilities; streets, sidewalks and trails and connections; lighting; landscaping; wastewater infrastructure and other utilities.
The property is located west of Linden Street North and situated between Greenvale Avenue and Lincoln Parkway.
- Kraewood Flats apartments
- Grading and foundation construction began October 2022
- The parking garage / foundation near completion as of April 2023
- Roof completion (weather-tight) – July 2023
- Drywall installation begin September 2023
- Trimming (cabinets, doors, and trim) begin November 2023
- Siding, stone, and brick install begin July 2023
- Curb & gutter; asphalt begin July 2023
- Landscaping begin October 2023
- Occupancy March/April 2024
- Road base completed by end of May 2023
- Curb, gutter and asphalt installed by end of June 2023
- Install small utilities and streetlights late June 2023
- Plant boulevard trees and sod September 2023
- First single-family homes anticipated to get underway summer 2023
Final plat and construction plans
As part of the approved development agreement the following rules apply to site development:
- Construction access to the site is restricted to Lincoln Parkway and Greenvale Avenue
- Developer is responsible for erosion control
- Developer is responsible for street maintenance until turned back to the City, including providing signage for detours or hazards, when necessary
- Adequate on-site parking for construction vehicles and workers must be provided or provisions must be made to have workers park off site and be shuttled to the project area. No fill, excavating material or construction materials can be stored in the public right-of-way
- Hours of construction, including moving of equipment, are limited to 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. on weekdays and 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. on weekends
The land development code (LDC) in city ordinance requires trees to be replaced if removed for a project. All trees removed are replaced based on the diameter of the tree. The Kraewood Development replacement trees will all be planted on site as development occurs. See the landscape plan for information on species and planting location.
How are environmentally sensitive items being handled?
Development or redevelopment of land can affect environmentally sensitive areas. In the instance of the Paulson land, city staff is aware the Rusty-Patched Bumble Bee (RPBB) is in the Northfield area. The project is not federally authorized or funded, so it does not fall into requirements for consultation under Section 7 of the Endangered Species Act.
The developer is preserving much of the outer edge of the property line trees and planting pollinator friendly plants in the stormwater basins and will not spray or use chemicals that would disturb the bees.
The Paulson Tree Farm area, is identified, in the City’s Natural Resources Inventory: Wildlife Habitat Value, as an area of medium value and is labeled as a Planted Coniferous Tree stand. The outer edge is considered forest and the interior is considered agricultural/crop land. The developer is required to replace trees, per city ordinance, at a certain rate depending on the diameter of the tree being removed.
Stormwater is being addressed by creating three basins to capture runoff. City ordinance requires stormwater be mitigated and contained on-site, which is analyzed by city staff for compliance.
What is an Environmental Assessment Worksheet and is it required?
An Environmental Assessment Worksheet (EAW) is a document of 20 questions to layout facts on whether a project will have significant environmental impacts. The EAW is used to determine if an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) is necessary.
An EAW provides permit information, informs the public about the project, and helps identify ways to protect the environment. The EAW is completed by the Responsible Governmental Unit (RGU), which is the City of Northfield City Council.
An EAW is required under certain circumstances. The Kraewood development did not require an EAW because it did not meet the thresholds of Minnesota state statutes.
A petition was filed with the State of Minnesota Environmental Quality Board (EQB), by a non-profit organization called Northfield for Sustainable Housing, Environments and Development (SHED) to have a discretionary environmental assessment worksheet (EAW) completed on the project. The City Council decided an environmental assessment worksheet was not needed for the project.
What is tax increment financing (TIF) and how does it work?
Tax increment financing (TIF) is a way to redevelop areas with substandard buildings, build housing for low-income and moderate-income families, clean up pollution, and/or finance public infrastructure.
A TIF application was submitted and approved to assist with development costs for the proposed apartment complex parcel. The apartment will provide 40% of the units at rates for persons earning 60% of the adjusted median income in Rice County.
The developer incorporated aspects of the city's new Sustainability Building Policy as part of the TIF request.
A TIF district is created to “capture” additional tax above the original tax rate before the property is developed. The additional “captured” tax is returned to the developer to pay for part of the development cost.