Metro Inn Motel seeks a buyer

City staff recommends not renewing motel license

Metro Inn
Metro Inn

The Metro Inn is for sale. And the 1950s-era motel at 5637 Lyndale Ave. S. nearly sold this spring.

“The deal fell apart,” said owner Shahid Mian.

Shaw-Lundquist Associates had an option to purchase the property, with plans to build a five-story senior housing project, according to Katya Pilling, the company’s Business Development Director. But the purchase agreement was canceled.

“There just wasn’t any way to make the financials work with the acquisition cost being that high,” she said.

Mian said he’s still willing to accept “any reasonable offer.”

“We really want to run the property, but the city is giving us a hard time,” he said, citing frequent inspections and tickets for issues like litter. He said staff at the family-run business are working hard day and night.

City staff recommended not to renew the Metro Inn and Aqua City Motel licenses last year, and the business owners have appealed, according to the city. City staff said the case is scheduled to have an evidentiary hearing soon.

The city placed operating conditions at the motels in recent years, regulating security staffing, litter pickup, guest IDs and staff training.

Pilling said Shaw-Lundquist remains interested in the site. The general contractor and design-build firm is currently working on projects that include the renovation of Bancroft Elementary. If the Metro Inn development went well, they were willing to consider a second acquisition of the neighboring Aqua City Motel, she said.

“We would still definitely be interested in building it here,” Pilling said. “…It’s a good market, it’s a good project.”