By John McLoone In case you haven’t heard, Hastings is in the midst of what can be termed an epic housing boom right now. During a Hastings Area Chamber of Commerce Small Business Call Friday …
By John McLoone
In case you haven’t heard, Hastings is in the midst of what can be termed an epic housing boom right now.
During a Hastings Area Chamber of Commerce Small Business Call Friday morning, Mayor Mary Fasbender highlighted the construction going on in and around Hastings.
Construction under way now or in the near future surpasses home construction of the last decade.
“As you can see, the city remains to be very, very busy, and our building of homes and units of housing continues, which is great,” she said. “In the last 10 years, there were only 477 housing units going on through the city. Within the next two years, we will have 600, which is awesome for our community. I personally don’t know that we’ve had a growth spurt like this for a long time, so that’s really exciting.”
Housing on the docket so far includes more than 250 units under construction this year and several other developments on the way.
Developments approved now include: Heritage Ridge – 40 traditional and villa home sites. Future phases will include an additional 86 lots. It’s being developed by Creative Homes.
Villas at Pleasant – Included are 32 village homes marketed toward seniors or empty nesters. It’s located at Pleasant and Northridge Drives, and is being developed by Simek Property Group.
The Confluence – The Confluence development underway at in the former Hudson Manufacturing complex at 200 W. Second St. and will include 20 market rate apartments, along with a motel and retail, dining and commercial space.
School House Square Senior Housing – The development at 10th and Vermillion will feature 90 affordable independent living units developed by Real Estate Equities.
Vermillion Acres – Headwater Development plans 75 senior housing units, including dependent care and memory care units at 1190 County Road 47.
A new development is also expected to have plans forthcoming, with land near Highway 316 and Michael Street that will need to be annexed.
“I heard rumblings about another housing development south of town. Is there anything you can speak about on that?” asked Chamber President Kristy Barse.
City Administrator Dan Wietecha said that plans call for 157 single family homes in that development.
“There’s some property off of 316 and Michael that was recently purchased. We’ve met with them to see their preliminary layout. The planning committee of the council met with them a couple weeks ago,” said Wietecha. “I expect that they’ll be submitting applications to annex into the city. I think it’s about 57 single family lots, so it’s nice to see continued growth.”
Other city Items of discussion Fasbender touched on several other things going on in the city.
“Our industrial park continues to have expansions and movement out there as well,” she said. “And it was really good last week as we were able to badge four new part-time firefighters. It’s good to have and see our public safety is building to be a stronger unit.”
“(Fire Chief) John Townsend gave out some promotions to people that haven’t been able to be badged in the last year or so, so that was great. Dan (Wietecha) can state that he has been working diligently with staff and See HOUSING Page 3 Housing
council on our budget and our ARPA (American Rescue Plan Act) dollars. And we know the Highway 316 project is coming to an end, but it still looks like it needs some work. We’re crossing our fingers that this is going to be available to us in early November. If you drive out there, it’s just awesome to see what it’s going to look like. It’s going to be a beautiful new welcoming for our community.”
Several officials were involved in the 40-minute call. Here’s what some others had to say.
State Rep. Tony Jurgens “Not a whole lot to report,” he started. “We’re not in session right now.”
He said Democrats and Republicans are in talks about how to distribute $250 million in frontline worker pay, and a special session is possible.
“They have not come to an agreement on how to distribute those funds, and without that agreement, it’s unlikely the governor would call a special session,” he said.
Jurgens expects talks on doling out that money to come early in the 2022 regular session.
“I’m not on the committee, so I wasn’t in on any of the hearings but from what I’m hearing from my colleagues and reading in the press, the one side wants to include more people and by doing that it waters down even more to the point where the individuals would get as little as a little over $100,” said Jurgens.
Dakota County Board Commissioner Mike Slavik “I think there’s a renewed interest in wanting to know always what’s going on with COVID. I think it’s important to note that what is going on in Dakota County is not necessarily what goes on in the state,” he said. “We’re trending in the right direction.”
“Public health is keeping an eye on it. Because of our percentage of vaccinated individuals, we’re not seeing a big burst and rise in vaccines administered within the county. However, public health is helping those seniors, teachers and healthcare workers that received Pfizer and are eligible for booster. They’re working on that,” said Slavik.
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City councilmember and Spiral Brewer co-owner Jen Fox reported on downtown doings.
She said last weekend was a busy one.
“We had a great event last weekend, and there were tons of people from outside of Hastings coming downtown, mostly anecdotally since we don’t actually poll, but they were all coming from apple orchards. We’re having a good fall downtown,” she said. “It’s really helpful to have these conversations with all of you, and I know our bars and restaurants and retailers really value the input and the work that all of you are doing for our businesses all over Hastings.”
Barse responded, “I appreciate the brewery’s willingness to track where their customers are coming from. That’s really helpful from a tourism standpoint and affirms that we’re taking a bit of a shift now and really focusing on our regional assets to promote from a tourism side. Just knowing that people are coming down to the apple orchards and then swinging into Hastings is really, really good feedback.”