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Granite Falls officials want to keep senior apartment facility

GRANITE FALLS -- City council members in Granite Falls want to keep a foreclosed upon apartment facility as a home for seniors.

Council members approved sending a request to the U.S. Housing and Urban Development agency to be granted a local community option to purchase Riverview Apartments if necessary.

The city is not interested in owning the property, but it is working with potential developers on plans to keep the property as senior housing, according to City Manager Bill Lavin.

The building, located near downtown on the east side of the Minnesota River, has 39 apartments on five floors.

It was constructed in the late 1970s by a non-profit organization known as Valley Promotions. It was refurbished in the 1990s.

HUD will be responsible for the foreclosure sale.

In other business, council members approved the second readings to enact separate ordinances making it a misdemeanor not to complete a permitted landscaping or building project within 180 days.

The ordinances are in response to complaints by residents that a number of projects remain unsightly and unfinished in residential areas.

In another matter, Lavin reported the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources has notified the city of its intent to allocate $1 million in 2010 state bonding funds toward flood mitigation projects in the community.

The money would make it possible to undertake the second phase of improvements to upgrade the city's main levee to protect against a 100-year flood. The city has $2.1 million in flood mitigation project requests this year.

Tom Cherveny

Tom Cherveny is a regional and outdoor reporter with the West Central Tribune in Willmar, MN.

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