Residents Back in Their Homes Following Renovation of Seward Towers in Minneapolis
Posted on: January 11, 2017, by : Alicia Cordes-Mayo
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Outdoor photo with sidewalk, benches, and wooden arbor overhead
New entrance to Seward Tower West with benches and wooden arbor

CommonBond Communities and its Seward neighborhood partners have invested significant time and resources in the two Seward Towers. To make the Seward Tower properties more welcoming, environmentally friendly, and safe for residents – and to preserve the buildings for the long-term – extensive renovation of the common spaces and individual apartments began late in 2015. Aging buildings, old sewer pipes, older mechanicals, and windows that no longer met code were some of the building issues that were addressed.

View of downtown Minneapolis from new window at Seward Tower West
View of downtown Minneapolis through new window at Seward Tower West

Throughout the duration of the construction period, residents had to move out of their units to accommodate the apartment upgrades. More than 35 families were relocated to a nearby apartment building, and the remaining households were temporarily moved within the buildings. With the well-being of residents as its top priority, CommonBond worked with a proven partner, Frerichs Construction, to complete the renovations in record time – the construction schedule was reduced by more than six months. All residents moved back into their apartment homes to find new windows, flooring, countertops, and appliances. In addition to new mechanicals and other technical upgrades to the building itself, light and airy entrances and common spaces were improved the resident experience.

“Residents displayed such patience with the many unknowns of this renovation project. This community is made up of some of the most resilient people I’ve ever met, and residents tried hard to see the positives of the renovation instead of focusing on the day-to-day challenges such extensive remodeling presented,” said Kim Christoffel, CommonBond Advantage Services Coordinator at Seward Tower West.

Man wearing a Nike jersey checking on something in the oven
Sandy Myers in his newly renovated kitchen

Most residents were happy to move back into their updated homes. They expressed appreciation for the readily available parking, homework center for their children, and the sense of community that exists at Seward Towers.

Sandy Myers, a Seward Tower West resident, shared his experience with the renovations:

Man wearing a cap and a Nike jersey, standing with his hands on the back of a recliner and smiling at the camera
Sandy Myers, resident at Seward Tower West

When the construction started, it was hard for me since I have good days and bad days with pain. It was so helpful to have a crew move my belongings and take care of the whole move to the temporary place. I’m thrilled to be back in my renovated apartment. Every morning it’s a blessing to wake up in this place. My remodeled apartment feels like a Christmas present and New Years present all wrapped up in one!

I feel so happy here. I’m not the kind of person that’s happy every day – but even on the days when I have pain, I still feel grateful and thrilled to be here! Everything is new – doors, cabinets, stove, fridge – and I don’t hear any freeway traffic even though I live right off I-94. It’s a lovely place and I treat it like that – I like to keep my floors clean and shining because I care about this place. I wouldn’t give up this home up for anything!