Developer Takes Another Stab at Restoring Mayon Plastics Building

The City Council approved a site plan that would transform the building into retail space.

Planners are hoping the third time’s the charm for the old Mayon Plastics building.

The City Council on Tuesday approved a site plan that would remodel the building and transform it into retail space.

Minneapolis-based Swervo Development Corp. has a purchase agreement for the 415 17th Ave. N. site. It plans to remove the west side of the building. That will leave the east side with 10,800 square feet of retail space—allowing up to seven retailers in the building.

The company is still courting tenants and does not yet know what businesses will occupy the space, said Sheldon Berg, an associate with DJR Architecture who presented the plan to the council Tuesday.

“Build it, and they’ll come,” he said.

That’s a different tack than the previous developer, Deephaven-based Stonehenge USA, took. The company that it expected a national sport haircut business, a national paint and decorating business and a tanning operation to occupy some of the building’s five or six spaces. But it wanted leases for about 70 percent of the spaces before it would move forward

DJR was actually involved in the first attempt, in 2008, to remake the Mayon building and reviewed plans from the previous two attempts in putting together this most recent project.

The green building at the corner of 17th Avenue and Highway 7 was long home to a plant that made plastic tubing—although at one point plastic tubing was made on one side of the building and mayonnaise was made on the other.

Swervo wants to start construction as soon as possible. Because the site is so tight with respect to parking, the project will go through the planned unit development process, which allows greater flexibility on sites that are difficult to develop.


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