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Rochester developer proposes new affordable apartment complex

ROCHESTER, Minn. (KTTC) – There’s high demand for affordable housing across Minnesota. In Rochester, the affordable housing shortage is especially prominent.

Joseph Development is proposing an affordable apartment complex with underground parking near Quarry Hill Nature Center. The four-story complex would house 76 units on Wheelock Drive NE and East Circle Drive NE.

But before it actually breaks ground, the developer has to win a limited number of Section 42 tax credits as well as some financial support from the city, or Tax-Increment-Financing.

Nearby residents are aware of the city’s need for more affordable housing but many raised concerns during a Tuesday informational meeting about how a new apartment would impact traffic in the area.

“Coming out of my neighborhood onto Viola Road, the traffic is backed up quite a ways, it’s going to be hard for people to leave where the apartment is going to be built,” said Jeff Tenner a Rochester resident. “It’s also environment impact, I mean this is a park area.”

City Council member Shaun Palmer said there will likely be a study done to assess the development’s impact on the neighborhood. If the proposal gets approved, maximum rent for households with incomes at or below 60 percent of the County’s Area Median Income will be $880 a month for one bedroom, $1,056 for 2 bedrooms, and between $1,220-$1,464 a month for three bedrooms. Tenants would be responsible for electricity, all other utilities are included in rent.

Olmsted County income level for a one-person household is under $39,420. Prospective tenants are required to go through the same screening requirements as market value apartments.

Apartment complexes The Meadows, 1st Avenue Flats, and Harvestview Place are among Joseph Development projects.

Public hearings for the proposed complex will be held in June and July. If financing for the project fails, the project will not move forward.

Linda Ha

Reporter | @LindaHaTV |

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