The prominent white building in Northeast Minneapolis where General Mills Inc. made Cheerios until recently has been sold to a developer who has helped reshape the neighborhood.
Hillcrest Development paid $2.1 million for the Purity Oats plant at 1210 Jackson St. NE, which today sits in the middle of a craft brewing and arts district. Golden Valley-based General Mills (NYSE: GIS) has moved production of oat flour to its nearby Fridley plant.
Hillcrest bought the property as an investment play and a sort of defensive move, said Scott Tankenoff, managing principal for the firm. A few years ago Hillcrest redeveloped a former Minneapolis Public Schools building into 170,000 square feet of office space, which is home to SportsEngine Inc. and other companies. That building, called the Highlight Center, borders the south side of the General Mills property.
“It’s not a usual purchase we would make. It isn’t a good value. We bought it because we are a neighbor and for strategic reasons,” he said .
For the immediate future, Hillcrest will use the property as additional parking for its Highlight Center, but will need to do some brainstorming on its long-term future. The five-story, 115,000-square-foot building, Tankenoff said, has been expanded several times over the years and had varying floor and ceiling heights. It’s not clear if it will be salvaged or demolished, though Hillcrest has a niche for repurposing old buildings.
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"General Mills sells former Cheerios plant in Minneapolis brewing district"; By .Nick Halter; Minneapolis / St. Paul Business Journal; November 22, 2019