Ryan Companies begins row home sales in Highland


Olivia Campbell

NEW URBANISM. Construction continues on the Highland Bridge neighborhood Mar. 3, eleven years after the closing of the Ford Plant. Ryan Companies announced the project in 2017. Lots and the first row homes went on sale in late-February.

After 86 years of operation, the Ford Plant shut down on Dec. 19, 2011, and 30,000 working Minnesotans lost their jobs. From this tragedy, a neighborhood filled with shops, residential areas, and parks will emerge. Ryan Companies acquired the 122-acre site, using it as an opportunity to bring new urbanism to the Highland Park neighborhood.

The Ryan Company project is committed to bringing all members of the community together regardless of social-economic status. 20 percent of the residential areas will be affordable housing, meaning by federal regulation it will cost less than 24 percent of the area’s median income.

Bobak Razavi said it will be, “Limited in what is affordable”, but with the investors on the line, 20 percent is still a good amount. The first market-rate apartments will be ready to lease in spring
2022. With an opening price of $639,815, these urban apartments will be centrally located and sustainable. The affordable house has yet to come, but these new apartments are the first major step to completion in the Highland Bridge project.

New Urbanism is a city development project oriented toward diversity, mixed-use housing, sustainability, and improving the quality of life for its inhabitants. Highland bridge is taking this to heart creating mixed-use housing which Razavi defines as “Commercial on the first level and apartments or condos up top, by doing that you got mixed use.”

To improve the quality of life for its residents, the highland bridge neighborhood is oriented towards pedestrians, cyclists, and public transport.

Freshman Georgia Ross enjoys walking with her friends in urban settings and said that the new area would be “eliminating the stressors of having to watch out for cars, and not being run over by a truck.”

Sustainability is created not only by pedestrians but in the 50 plus acres of parks, waterways, and open space. They have also committed to integrating public transport “Every single building will be within a quarter-mile of transit”, by shortening distances dramatically increases the likelihood of use according to SAGE journals. Ryan companies is also committed to 100 percent carbon-free and renewable sources of energy with the largest solar area in St. Paul. Although not all of these amenities will not be open now for the first building, it shows the investment that the renters and owners of the new apartments are making for their future.

The Highland Bridge site will open to the public this spring. The district
that comes from this project is set to be the modern standard for neighborhood developments. Highland bridge is created for the community, as Ryan Company states in their mission statement, “value they bring to the people who use them and the communities that surround them.” Although the road will be long, this building is only the first step.