by Joni Astrup
The Bluffs of Elk River may have a buyer.
Soderberg Apartment Specialists in Brooklyn Center has expressed interest in The Bluffs and in turning the condominiums into apartments.
Jim Soderberg said if everything comes together they hope to seal the deal next week.
“We have until the middle of May to close but we’re trying to close early if we can,” he said.
If the purchase goes through, the plan is to complete the condominiums with amenities like granite countertops and stainless steel appliances. Soderberg said they also would like to make the deck off the party room larger.
The Bluffs of Elk River overlooks the Mississippi River in downtown Elk River. It has commercial space on the first floor and condominiums on the upper floors.
The condos were intended to be owner-occupied, but only three of the 67 were sold.
The project went through foreclosure several years ago.
Elk River Housing and Redevelopment Authority (HRA) Chairman Stewart Wilson said he’s very pleased that someone in the property management business is interested in acquiring the building and making improvements in an effort to get it fully occupied and ultimately fulfill what the HRA had in mind for the site.
While the original idea was that the condos would be owner-occupied, Wilson said the market has not made that possible.
“Certainly that would be ideal still,” Wilson said, “but the market conditions in reality aren’t allowing that to happen. It’s gone on so long now that I’m willing to compromise (on the condos becoming rental units).”
Wilson has met Soderberg and said he is impressed by his enthusiasm for the project.
If the residential and commercial units at The Bluffs become fully occupied, “it would build on a lot of the progress that has been made downtown in the last half a dozen years,” Wilson said.