Cheapo relocating to Nicollet; Planning Commission approves new development

Credit: A rendering of the development between Lagoon, Lake and Fremont. Rendering by ESG Architects

The city Planning Commission approved plans Aug. 17 for a seven-story building located where the Cheapo store and parking lot stand today at 1300 W. Lake St.

The project by CPM Development is slated to include a single retail tenant on the first floor, about 6,000 square feet of office space on the second floor, and 125 units on floors two and above. Seventy of the units would be studio apartments, with 25 one-bedroom and 30 two-bedroom units. A terrace would stand above the second floor along Lake Street, and the top floor would have a terrace as well. Two floors of underground parking would include 161 spaces.

Council Member Lisa Bender (10th Ward), who voted in support of the project applications, said a few people contacted her regarding the size of the commercial space. She said retail would likely serve neighborhood demand, and she noted the opportunity for people to walk and bike to the site. Bender requested more exterior bike parking spaces, for a total of 28, which the Planning Commission approved.

Planning Commissioner Ryan Kronzer said he thinks the design has “evolved nicely” since an earlier version, and said it is now more cohesive.

Meanwhile, Cheapo Discs plans to squeeze into the Payday America building at the southwest corner of 26th & Nicollet in mid-September.

Owner Al Brown said the new store would be half the size of its current location.

“By using more wall fixtures we will be able to get as much inventory into that building as we can,” Brown said. “But of course we can’t get all of it.”

A portion of the store’s inventory goes on sale this month, starting at 25 percent.

The new building has about 20 parking spaces located behind and underneath the store.

Brown said the new 9,000-square-foot site would feature much of the same inventory, same employees and same customer service.

“If you can’t find it, we can order it,” he said.

Payday America employees will disperse to other locations, according to staff.