Lander Group
Lander Group Urban Development





July 29, 2004

Printer’s Row to bring 84 new loft-style urban homes
to downtown Saint Paul

Developer announces partnership with Habitat for Humanity, showcases neighborhood’s printing history

Saint Paul—Printer’s Row, the next addition to Saint Paul’s growing Wacouta Commons neighborhood, will bring 84 new loft-style urban homes in two contemporary, new buildings to downtown Saint Paul. As a result of a unique partnership, eight of those homes will be built by Habitat for Humanity. Of the eight Habitat for Humanity lofts, four will be designated as Possibility Build units, meaning the homes will be equipped with assistive technology for home buyers that have at least one physically disabled member. Habitat for Humanity will partner with Courage Center to identify buyers and their assistive technology needs. Additional Habitat for Humanity and Possibility Build homes are planned for future phases of Wacouta Commons.

At a July 29 groundbreaking ceremony for the project, Michael Lander, a partner in Lander Sherman Urban Development, the entity behind the award-winning Wacouta Commons neighborhood, said, “With Printer’s Row, we’re not only breaking ground, we’re also opening a door and making it possible for Habitat for Humanity home buyers to live right here in the city. We’ve seen that mixed-income developments strengthen the community fabric while creating great returns on our homebuyers’ investment.”

Saint Paul Mayor Randy Kelly described the partnership between Lander Sherman Urban Development, Habitat for Humanity and Courage Center as “an excellent model for extending access to urban living to families who are faced with economic and physical challenges.”

According to Habitat for Humanity Executive Director Stephen Seidel, who was also on hand for the groundbreaking, this is the first time any Habitat for Humanity affiliate has provided loft-style housing in a downtown urban area. “It’s great, because it allows our homebuyers to live in an area that has easy accessibility to jobs, downtown amenities and transportation. It’s even more exciting that half of the Habitat for Humanity Homes will be part of the Possibility Build program, so that families with physically disabled members can take advantage of this outstanding location,” he said.

Lander also spoke about the history of the neighborhood where the new homes are being built. “Back in the early 1900s, a number of printing companies were located in this area, which is why we named it Printer’s Row. A couple of weeks ago, while doing some excavation across the street, it was confirmed that this was a good name,” he said. He then unveiled a display of historic lithostones unearthed by construction workers. According to Lander, the workers found dozens of lithostones used for printing documents for a number of Minnesota businesses. “We found the names of banks from Wadena to Grand Rapids, Hamms Brewery, Saint Paul Insurance Company, even Glacier Park Hotel,” he said. He said they are discussing how they might incorporate some of the stones into the buildings’ architecture.

About Twin Cities Habitat for Humanity Habitat for Humanity is an ecumenical housing ministry and grassroots organization that works to provide simple, decent, affordable housing for and with low-income households. Volunteer labor, donated materials and contributed funds are used to build and renovate homes in the Twin Cities area. These homes are then sold to low-income buyers, at a price which charges no profit and with long-term mortgage financing, provided by Twin Cities Habitat for Humanity, which charges no interest. Households served by Habitat are selected based on their housing needs, their financial circumstances and their willingness to partner with Habitat in the process of building their home and other Habitat homes. Qualified partner families work side-by-side with volunteers to turn dreams and donations into the reality of decent, affordable homes.

About Courage Center
Courage Center is a nationally-known, not-for-profit rehabilitation and resource center for people with physical disabilities, brain injuries, speech or vision impairments, or hearing loss. Headquartered in Minneapolis, Courage Center offers comprehensive, life-long services to people of all ages. Courage Center’s wide-ranging services are designed to empower people with disabilities to reach their full potential in every aspect of life. For more information about Courage Center, visit

Possibility Build, is a collaborative effort between Twin Cities Habitat for Humanity and Courage Center to provide affordable, accessible housing for people with disabilities.

About Wacouta Commons
Printer’s Row is the fourth phase of development in the Wacouta Commons Neighborhood, which now extends from East 7th Street to East 10th Street and from Wacouta Street to Temperance Street. The new neighborhood features a variety of housing options serving a diverse range of renters and buyers, including the Essex on the Park and Dakota brownstone condominiums, the Sibley Park and Sibley Court apartments, and the 9th Street Lofts, located in the refurbished Workforce Center of Downtown Saint Paul. A new city park, Wacouta Commons Park, and a collection of neighborhood-based retailers are also part of the mix.

Wacouta Commons is a joint venture of Lander/Sherman, a partnership of The Lander Group, a Minneapolis-based, award-winning development firm specializing in urban in-fill development, and Sherman Associates, a recognized housing development and construction firm with more than 20 years of experience in the five-state region. Project partners include the City of Saint Paul, Metropolitan Council, Minnesota Housing Finance Agency, and HUD. Kraus-Anderson Construction provides general contracting services. ESG Architects and Close Landscape Architecture provide architectural and architectural landscape services respectively.

For further information on Printer’s Row area ownership housing contact, Tony Kriha at 651-230-0392 or or

For information on Habitat for Humanity Housing, call

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