One of the largest developers in the Twin Cities has floated a plan to develop apartments in a suburban office park.

Opus Development Co. wants to build 240 to 260 apartments on a former UnitedHealth Group campus on the western edge of Edina, which is in the midst of its biggest apartment boom in decades.

The project is also part of a broader trend, in which apartment developers are shifting from Minneapolis and St. Paul into the suburbs. It would be the first under Edina’s new affordable housing guidelines.

The nearly 22-acre site is just north of Hwy. 62 at the intersection of Hwy. 169 and Lincoln Drive in an area of offices, apartment and condo complexes and single-family homes.

UnitedHealth occupied the site until 2013 when it moved the workers who were there to new buildings across Hwy. 169 in adjacent Minnetonka.

Recently, the Children’s Hospitals & Clinics moved administrative workers into a former UnitedHealth building on the site. In its proposal, Opus said it would tear down the remaining vacant portion of the site, chiefly parking area, to make way for the apartments, to be called Lincoln Drive Residences.

Minnetonka-based Opus recently presented the city of Edina with a site plan and series of renderings that show a four-story, U-shaped building with one level of partly below-grade parking and a courtyard with resident amenities, including a swimming pool. The Children’s Hospitals & Clinics portion of the site would get a new access road.

Opus has yet to submit any formal applications, but it solicited feedback from the city’s planning commission.

Phil Cattanach, director, real estate development for Opus, said the company has the site under option agreement and is moving forward with due diligence before it completes the purchase and begins the entitlement process.

“The site’s proximity to the business campuses was one of many driving factors in our interest in this site,” Cattanach said.

Such sites are increasingly rare in the Twin Cities, especially in and around downtown Minneapolis where thousands of apartments have been built over the past half-decade. But for the first time since the postrecession building boom, more than half of all proposed apartment construction is going to happen in the suburbs.

Marquette Advisors has counted about 4,200 new units that will hit the market this year, with another 8,000 in the works through 2018. At least 60 percent of the total are scheduled for the suburbs.

Edina’s community development director, Cary Teague, said that during the past two years about 1,500 apartments have been built in the city. Most were around the Southdale shopping center along France Avenue between Hwy. 62 and I-494.

Marquette vice president Brent Wittenberg has consulted on several projects in the area recently, including an analysis of housing markets, including Edina, that are within the proposed Southwest Light Rail Transit corridor.

Wittenberg said the west Edina project would likely appeal to a variety of renter segments, ranging from single professionals to empty nesters. The location is “strategic and distinguished from Southdale-oriented projects, and should garner positive response from downsizing older adults in nearby neighborhoods,” he said.

The project would also be the first to be built under the guidance of the city’s new affordable housing rules, which require rental housing developers to include income-restricted housing in their plans. About 10 percent of the units would be for affordable housing, even if it’s a full-market rate building. The goal is to create more diverse housing stock.

Edina is also trying to improve its “walk score,” meaning the ability of its residents to access trails, shops and offices without driving. So the project would include a connection to the nearby Nine Mile Creek Regional trail and a new boulevard-style sidewalk that would run parallel to Lincoln Drive.

“We’re trying to create a more walkable, livable mixed-use community and that’s attractive for people right now,” Teague said. “We’re trying to make it all fit together and to create public spaces to connect all the different amenities Edina has to offer.”

David White, left, and Lamont Butler, center, rode the A-line bus departing the 46th Street Blue Line light rail station on Friday.

Source Article

There are a few big perks of renting a home. For starters, you’ll save money on monthly utility bills which are generally lower. Plus, having a landlord look out for general maintenance issues can be a huge load off. Oh, and yard work? Zilch.

Whether you need a pet-friendly space or prefer a pad with a pool, new rentals hit the market everyday. Browse nearby apartments, condos, and houses for rent in Edina listed by our partners at realtor.com.

There are a few big perks of renting a home. For starters, you’ll save money on monthly utility bills which are generally lower. Plus, having a landlord look out for general maintenance issues can be a huge load off. Oh, and yard work? Zilch.

Whether you need a pet-friendly space or prefer a pad with a pool, new rentals hit the market everyday. Browse nearby apartments, condos, and houses for rent in Edina listed by our partners at realtor.com.

There are a few big perks of renting a home. For starters, you’ll save money on monthly utility bills which are generally lower. Plus, having a landlord look out for general maintenance issues can be a huge load off. Oh, and yard work? Zilch.

Whether you need a pet-friendly space or prefer a pad with a pool, new rentals hit the market everyday. Browse nearby apartments, condos, and houses for rent in Edina listed by our partners at realtor.com.

There are a few big perks of renting a home. For starters, you’ll save money on monthly utility bills which are generally lower. Plus, having a landlord look out for general maintenance issues can be a huge load off. Oh, and yard work? Zilch.

Whether you need a pet-friendly space or prefer a pad with a pool, new rentals hit the market everyday. Browse nearby apartments, condos, and houses for rent in Edina listed by our partners at realtor.com.

There are a few big perks of renting a home. For starters, you’ll save money on monthly utility bills which are generally lower. Plus, having a landlord look out for general maintenance issues can be a huge load off. Oh, and yard work? Zilch.

Whether you need a pet-friendly space or prefer a pad with a pool, new rentals hit the market everyday. Browse nearby apartments, condos, and houses for rent in Edina listed by our partners at realtor.com.

There are a few big perks of renting a home. For starters, you’ll save money on monthly utility bills which are generally lower. Plus, having a landlord look out for general maintenance issues can be a huge load off. Oh, and yard work? Zilch.

Whether you need a pet-friendly space or prefer a pad with a pool, new rentals hit the market everyday. Browse nearby apartments, condos, and houses for rent in Edina listed by our partners at realtor.com.

There are a few big perks of renting a home. For starters, you’ll save money on monthly utility bills which are generally lower. Plus, having a landlord look out for general maintenance issues can be a huge load off. Oh, and yard work? Zilch.

Whether you need a pet-friendly space or prefer a pad with a pool, new rentals hit the market everyday. Browse nearby apartments, condos, and houses for rent in Edina listed by our partners at realtor.com.

There are a few big perks of renting a home. For starters, you’ll save money on monthly utility bills which are generally lower. Plus, having a landlord look out for general maintenance issues can be a huge load off. Oh, and yard work? Zilch.

Whether you need a pet-friendly space or prefer a pad with a pool, new rentals hit the market everyday. Browse nearby apartments, condos, and houses for rent in Edina listed by our partners at realtor.com.

There are a few big perks of renting a home. For starters, you’ll save money on monthly utility bills which are generally lower. Plus, having a landlord look out for general maintenance issues can be a huge load off. Oh, and yard work? Zilch.

Whether you need a pet-friendly space or prefer a pad with a pool, new rentals hit the market everyday. Browse nearby apartments, condos, and houses for rent in Edina listed by our partners at realtor.com.

Source Article

Listening to triggers like a whispering voice or keyboard typing are soothing for some people.

Her voice never registers above a whisper.

She stares at you with soft eyes.

Then slowly, she turns the pages of a book, tapping her fingers softly against the paper. The sound of her voice and fingers tapping is amplified by a microphone. “Want to count the stars?” she purrs, pointing to a page showing a luminous galaxy.

Meet “Maria,” perhaps the most famous ASMR artist on YouTube. More than a million people subscribe to her “Gentle Whispering ASMR” videos, created to help people relax with calming sounds and images believed to induce a tingling sensation in the brain.

Known as autonomous sensory meridian response, or ASMR, this pseudoscientific term describes a physical and mental sensation that many claim to experience. Some with ASMR feel shivers up their spine or brain “goose bumps.” Others become drowsy and dazed.

Sounds such as whisper tones, tapping fingers and crinkling paper are the most common triggers. But other people get the tingles from watching someone do a repetitive task that becomes meditative. (This may explain why videos of barbers cutting hair or of someone ironing a shirt are popular among ASMR enthusiasts.)

Recently, this mysterious sensory experience has become trendy, producing a cottage industry of ASMR artists creating their own videos with audiences tuning in to relieve stress and sleeplessness.

Science has yet to explain why some people experience ASMR and others don’t. But there is growing interest from scientists in studying ASMR as a possible therapy for stress, anxiety, depression and insomnia.

While it may be hard to believe that anyone would want to watch a video of someone folding a stack of towels in order to rest better, sleep doctors say they’ve heard of stranger tactics.

“It’s odd, but odd things work for some people,” said Dr. Michael Howell, associate professor of neurology at the University of Minnesota and medical director of Fairview Sleep Services in Edina. “Would it be plausible that people who have this ASMR response could respond differently to these therapies for insomnia? Absolutely, yes, that’s plausible.”

Until there’s hard evidence, though, he said he wouldn’t recommend it for patients as a sleep aid.

Among those pushing for more research on ASMR is Craig Richard, who runs a website, ASMR University, that posts news articles about ASMR and interviews with researchers. Richard, a professor in the Department of Biopharmaceutical Sciences at Shenandoah University in Virginia, says he feels the brain tingles with the right triggers.

“My head gets really fuzzy in an enjoyable way,” he said. “My entire body feels super-relaxed, and I’ll want to put my head down and take a nap.”

He has been fascinated with ASMR since he first learned about it through a podcast five years ago. He was skeptical at first, until the podcasters mentioned Bob Ross.

The late host of “The Joy of Painting” TV series had a baritone voice known to invoke maximum chill. Hearing it, Richard’s ears perked up. That voice, along with the tap-tap-tap sound of Ross’s paintbrush against the canvas creating his “happy little trees,” sent Richard straight to his own happy little place.

“I remembered coming home from school as a kid, flipping channels and stopping on Bob Ross because his voice was so magical,” he said. “I’d set up a big floor pillow and fall asleep halfway through. I don’t think I ever watched him finish a painting.”

Brain tingles are associated with relaxation, and Richard suggests that brain chemicals such as endorphins, oxytocin (the love hormone) and serotonin may be involved in the reaction to ASMR triggers.

Many ASMR videos posted online strive to create intimacy between the viewer and the ASMR artist. It’s that feeling of comfort, connectedness and being cared for that draws so many people in, Richard argued.

“The reason people are tuning into these videos is because they find them relaxing, which is helpful to their stress,” he said.

For even more intimacy, a pair of New York artists have turned the ASMR experience into an immersive theater show. They call it ASMRtistry,

Melinda Lauw and Andrew Hoepfner offer what is believed to be the only in-person ASMR event, selling tickets to their interactive show. The 90-minute performance takes place in rented houses and apartments. Attendees are blindfolded and escorted into the homes, where the artists create sounds to stimulate the ASMR reaction in their guests.

It starts with a group presentation. Later the artists remove the blindfolds and escort each patron into a different room for a one-on-one experience. One scene, for example, involves a performer who will brush the patron’s hair while she tells them a story, speaking in a soft voice as a mother would to her child.

The show closes with blindfolds again. Performers lead the audience out of the home and release them into the world.

“The whole experience is very meditative and quiet,” Lauw said. “People come out of this experience feeling really peaceful.”

She has experienced ASMR since she was a child.

“I always knew I had it,” she said, remembering a particular childhood moment when she saw something that instantly relaxed her. “There was this little girl coloring on paper, and I remember loving that scene so much,” she said.

@allieshah

Source Article

EDINA, Minn. – Investigators in Arkansas say an Edina woman listed as missing is dead, and her boyfriend, who she met on the internet, is responsible.

Documents filed by the state police in Little Rock, Arkansas indicate while Joseph Porter is officially charged with possessing a stolen vehicle, he is also implicated in the murder of 27-year-old Minnesota resident Cristina Prodan. Prodan was reported missing from her Edina condominium January 5 by her mother.

CRISTINA PRODAN: Missing from Edina, MN – 5 Jan 2018 – Age 27 https://t.co/13BvDE4GXf pic.twitter.com/VCzk2uUQpk

— CRIMEWATCHERS (@Kimster_CW) January 17, 2018

Documents in Pulaski County Circuit Court detail how the couple met on Facebook, and Porter soon moved to Edina to live with with Prodan to embark on what can only be described as a violent relationship. Edina Police were called to the couple’s residence a number of times on domestic violence reports, including one where Prodan says Porter raped her. She filed an order of protection, which Porter broke, and the two resumed their relationship before Prodan disappeared. Porter’s whereabouts were also unknown.

Investigators contacted Porter’s mother, Arlie Porter, who reportedly told them that in December her son had said he was going to kidnap Cristina, drain her bank accounts and empty her safe deposit box, and take her where no one would ever find her.

The case apparently began to turn when investigators located a residence in Jacksonville, Arkansas owned by Richard Crawford, the legal husband of Joseph Porter. Federal agents went to the trailer January 10, and found Porter suffering from serious burns to his face, hands and body. Both Porter and Crawford were detained for questioning and a warrant was obtained to search their residence. Inside investigators found numerous personal items belonging to Cristina Prodan.

During questioning Crawford reportedly told detectives that Porter confided he and Cristina had gotten into a heated argument and that she was not alive when they left Minnesota. Crawford said Porter had driven to New Orleans, where he doused Cristina’s body with gasoline and set her on fire. It was while doing this that Porter reportedly burned his hands and face.

Investigators subsequently learned that police in New Orleans had recovered a burned body on January 6. The body was found just a quarter mile from where a vehicle that Porter was in possession of was stolen.

Joseph Porter is being held with no bail in Pulaski County, Arkansas, but no official murder charges have yet been filed in Cristina Prodan’s death.

© 2018 KARE-TV

Source Article