New Live/Work Rentals for Creatives in Northeast Minneapolis
In the innocent days of 2019, Jeremy Edwards started developing a live/work townhome rental community in Northeast Minneapolis with plans to market it to makers and other creatives. He had no idea just how prescient the concept would be in 2022 when so many people have expanded opportunities to work from home.
“I really thought it was truly going to be a maker space—an entrepreneur or a small business owner having a small shop. I never could have imagined in 2019 that it’d be so attractive to the hybrid worker,” Edwards said. “I think there’s plenty of working professionals that need little more than a computer to do their job, and they don’t necessarily want to do it in their child’s bedroom. I think having a dedicated space will be attractive.”
Still, The Maker at 1428 Marshall St. N.E., was designed with small businesses in mind—a big step up from the traditional artist loft where living space and workspace are often separated by little more than a bookshelf. And with rent starting at $3,950 per month, better hope that small business is turning a profit.
The seven-unit townhome project features four dedicated live/work units that include 300 square feet of “maker space,” each with a separate entrance on Marshall Street. This two-in-one was designed to make it easy for business owners to meet with collaborators or clients in a space separate but adjacent to their homes. Three units on the backside of the building—already leased—are more traditional townhomes. Each unit features three bedrooms and three bathrooms with a private patio, a built-in Weber grill, and two parking spaces.
“We wanted to provide a housing option that catered to the small business owner,” Edwards said. “The spirit of creatives, makers, and startup businesses is very strong in Northeast Minneapolis, and The Maker provides that population an ideal location to live and work.”
The development is located across the street from the Food Building, home to numerous startups like Baker’s Field Flour & Bread. It’s also kitty-corner from Twin Ignition Startup Garage, a co-working and incubating space for the tech startup community.
DJR Architecture of Minneapolis designed the project, and Pocket Properties partnered with local interior design firm Studio BV to give The Maker a modern, Scandinavian-inspired look. The Maker’s exterior pays homage to its setting near the Mississippi River and Northeast’s rich industrial history with real cedar and corrugated metal.
“It was important to us for The Maker to provide an alternative to the standard rentals being built today,” DJR’s lead design and associate Eli Zmira said in a statement. “The Maker is the first new development built in Northeast Minneapolis to allow for both luxury urban family living and a private home office in an area where most rentals are massive buildings with a majority of small single units.”
For Edwards, the connection to Northeast is personal—his great grandfather worked down the street from The Maker at the Grain Belt factory, and Edwards started his real estate business in the neighborhood.
“It’s exciting to be able to contribute to the fabric of Northeast and the unique nature of the neighborhood,” Edwards said. “It is the official arts district of Minneapolis and I think people take that very seriously.”