Anoka County Regional Economic Development (ACRED) hosted it annual UpRiver Real Estate event on Wednesday October 9th at the TPC in Blaine.  The attendance in 2019, was 50% higher than previous years with over 100 real estate, banking and community officials in the room.  The 21 communities in Anoka County along with ACRED partnership host this annual event as a way of providing an update on recent projects and highlight what’s to come.  This year’s event featured multiple presentations, and offered license real estate professional two (2) hours of continuing education credits approved by the Minnesota Department of Commerce.

The first speaker was Mike Wardwell, Property Manager & Development Associate for Hyde Development who discussed the success of the almost 2 million square-foot industrial redevelopment project, Northern Stacks in Fridley.  Mike’s presentation highlighted that the redevelopment has brought over 1200 jobs to the area, and has exceeded project timeline projects because of the demand for industrial space in the north metro.


The second presentation was a panel discussion about the Minnesota Technology Corridor with Bruce Sayler from Connexus Energy, Chris Eng from Washington County CDA, Erin Sparks from Great River Energy, and Jacquel Hajder from Anoka County Regional Economic Development.  The panel highlight the initiative to attract tech companies to the north metro, the partners that have been involved and the prep work that has been done in the corridor to ensure available sites remain on the “short list” of site selectors.


The third presentation was a highlight about the retail market and investment happening at Northtown Mall from Paula Mueller, with Washington Prime Group/Manager of the mall.  Paula discussed how the mall has remained open because they have been nimble and open to a variety of users including those that are more entertainment focused than traditional retail.  She then went on to highlight a few upcoming tenants and changes at the mall including an indoor golf simulator/restaurant & bar, and a new met transit bus hub.


The final presentation featured private-public partnership development project examples in Anoka County with speakers from The City of Blaine, Dominium, Frauenshuh, Shafer Richardson and the City of Centerville.  Eric Omdahl with Dominium and Muareen Michalski with Schafer have both worked on recent housing projects in the City of Blaine, both tacking on risks and overcoming development obstacles that the City of Blaine’s partnership helped overcome.  Mark Statz, Administrator for the City of Centerville and Jonathan Juris with Frauenshuh discussed industrial projects they had worked on in Ramsey and Centerville and how less red tape, city and private partnership were pivotal in the success they have seen.