$28M affordable housing complex set for Green Line route

An artist rendering of Hamline Station
An artist rendering of what the new Hamline Station development will look like.
Courtesy of Met Council

The end of the automobile era on University Avenue doesn't get more symbolic than this: A new housing and retail development will reshape a vacant auto sales lot along the Green Line light rail route.

Government leaders and housing officials will break ground Monday on a $28 million complex that will include more than 100 units of affordable rentals. A portion of the units will be occupied by people with disabilities and the formerly homeless.

The new development, called Hamline Station, is a block long and will be built with a mix of private and public money. It will be built on the site of the former Midway Chevrolet used car lot.

While some have criticized the concentration of low-income housing along the corridor, Project for Pride in Living's executive director, Paul Williams, is unapologetic.

"University Avenue is a better place because of the affordable housing that's been built in and around Frogtown and Summit-U," Williams said. "If we don't build that housing, these markets -- these neighborhoods -- are really in the dumps."

Williams says his nonprofit wanted to build a community where working families could easily hop on transit to get to their jobs.

"It's actually going to be a very striking project, which is going to send a statement to the marketplace and the neighborhood about the quality and what's possible here. So we view it as a very catalytic project," he said.

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