Uptown, meet your new Walgreen's.
News broke at the beginning of the year that Walgreen's was planning a move on Hennepin Avenue from their current location at 2426 Hennepin Avenue to 2640 Hennepin Avenue, what currently is the home of Roat Osha Restaurant.
The plan for the site includes demolishing the building that currently houses Roat Osha along with a neighboring building that formerly housed First Tech. Once completed construction would begin on a new 16,321 square foot building that would take up the entire corner of Hennepin Avenue and 27th Street.
The overall design of the new Walgreens location is very minimalistic and modern. 13,816 square feet of space will be found on the ground floor while 2,500 square feet of space will be located on a mezzanine level that will be used strictly for store operations and storage. The building will follow the lot line pretty closely including the angle that 27th Avenue creates when meeting Hennepin Avenue. Exterior materials that are planned to be used include metal, brick, cast stone, and various glass types.
When Walgreen's vacates their current store next to Kowalski's their space will not be vacant for long. Kowalski's is already drafting up plans to renovate and expand their current location next to Walgreens into what use to be their space. This would allow for a number of new services and an elevated shopping experience for their customers.
The project will go before the Planning Commission at their March 14th meeting. A number of concerns have already been raised such as the exterior design not fitting in well enough with the neighborhood and the overall accessibility of the store. One HUGE concern is the density of the project. Area residents would like to see a project of 3 of 4 stories at this corner with a Walgreens on the ground floor, not a single level retail store. However Walgreens has said to have already explored this option and deemed it not viable and at the moment plans no revisions.
However, as with any project, there will likely be some required revisions before the project is passed by the city. Construction should begin by the summer if there are no major set backs.