Address:333 Hennepin Ave. E., Minneapolis

Web address

Size: 26 stories, 283 apartments

Architect:Cuningham Group

General contractor: M.A. Mortenson Co.

Owner/developer: M.A. Mortenson Co. and The Excelsior Group

Property description:  Named in honor of a group, or “rafter,” of wild turkeys known to call Northeast Minneapolis home, Mortenson’s Rafter apartment tower is intended to be a “love letter” to the neighborhood, said company development manager Brent Webb.

Open to new residents since July 21, Rafter has been imbued with touches of art and culture that reflect Northeast’s heritage as an artist community. The luxury building features photography, murals and paintings by Northeast Minneapolis artists throughout, and even includes a ground-floor “maker space” where residents can pursue their favorite crafts.

Golden Valley-based Mortenson and co-developer The Excelsior Group built the tower on the former site of a U.S. Bank branch that moved into a new, Mortenson-built branch next door. The tower rises on 0.75 acres behind Northeast’s venerable Surdyk’s liquor store and is across the street from LMC’s NordHaus apartments.

“We thought it was a great site,” Webb said in an interview just ahead of Rafter’s Aug. 15 grand opening.

Building amenities include concierge lobby service, a rooftop terrace and pool on the seventh floor, a club room, co-working space featuring private work suites, a fitness facility, a guest suite, a dog run and pet spa and an outdoor movie theater. The club room also features a secret door to a speakeasy-style room where residents can listen to hundreds of vinyl LPs collected for Rafter.

Apartments range from 500-square-foot studios to three-bedroom units and penthouses that sprawl to 2,900 square feet of space, Webb said. Monthly rents start at $1,200 and top out at more than $9,000. None of the penthouses have been rented yet.

The building has about 60 unit floorplans, all of which are named after people involved with the project, Webb said.  That unit mix includes 16 penthouses on the upper floors. Eighty tenants have signed leases so far and about 40 have moved in. The owners hope to have 33 percent of the apartments leased by the end of 2019.

Tenants come from a wide range of backgrounds, Webb said. But many are coming to Rafter from both near and far because they want to live in Northeast.

“One of the surprises is that there are a handful of people from out of state,” he said.

A 2,700-square-foot space adjacent to the building’s lobby is likely to be home to a future restaurant, Webb said, although Mortenson and project co-developer The Excelsior Group have yet to sign a tenant. Another 1,800 square feet of commercial space is available for rent on the Fourth Street side of the building. Rafter also has an outdoor courtyard along Hennepin Avenue that both residents and the future tenant in the larger commercial space can use.

Building ownership includes a third investor that Webb declined to name. The group does not have specific plans as to how long it might own the building, although Mortenson does typically try to sell its interest in projects once they are mostly leased, Webb said.

August 19, 2019  |  By Finace & Commerce|  Original Article