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MINNEAPOLIS: Building for Town & Gown


The Opus Group builds a lot of student housing with retail included, but it's not just for the students. A drug store and sushi restaurant may serve students well, but Opus also has the surrounding community in mind. Opus Development Co's Dave Menke tells us the firm builds boutique apartments that are walkable to campus, but are also part of the larger market. A prime example is The Station on Washington, a just-finished project near the University of Minnesota.


The 97-unit building opened a month ago, fully leased, with 11k SF of retail including Walgreens and Haiku Sushi on the ground floor. Student demand is still quite strong, he says. Opus gravitates to large campuses that are underserved for residential. The high-barrier-to-entry, urban properties will then still be able to rely on their top-notch locations whenever demand finally does dip a little (something any college math course, no matter how hungover you are, will teach you is bound to happen).