3601 Nicollet development again moves forward

Talks have resumed with Brian Goff, owner of the vacant lot at 3601 Nicollet Ave., the Kingfield Neighborhood Association (KFNA) and city officials.

The city approved housing/retail redevelopment plans for Goff’s site in December 2002, but the project stalled in the city’s permit approval process. Now, Goff says he’s talking again with the neighborhood about a larger development.

Goff said he’s working on plans to build a three- to four-story development with an undetermined number of condominium units, retail spaces and an underground parking facility.

The approved 2002 plan included four residential units and two retail spaces; prospective tenants included an unspecified coffee shop chain and sandwich place.

KFNA supported the 2002 project, which required upzoning the property from C1 to C2 to allow drive-through access and increase the building’s height and parking.

Goff said he then waited five months for the city to issue a building permit. He said he began working on other projects, mothballing the Kingfield development.

He said he considered reducing the 3601 Nicollet project to a one-story retail building, but KFNA and city leaders have urged him to think bigger than before.

KFNA President David Motzenbecker said because the site is a premier neighborhood spot, it should have a larger-scale, mixed-use development.

Goff said he had planned to start building the one-story structure July 1, but given neighborhood and city enthusiasm, he’s waiting to solidify something larger. "It’s a matter of working with the neighborhood and getting the right plan," he said.

Goff said the one-story option remains a backup if he runs into problems with a larger development. A date has not yet been set to begin construction.