Commercial-industrial building permits jump in St. Paul.


Byline: Brian Johnson

With projects ranging from waterproofing at the iconic Minnesota History Center to redevelopment of the old O'Gara's site on Snelling Avenue, the city of St. Paul had a big month for commercial and industrial building activity in March.

During the month, the city issued commercial and industrial permits valued $45.5 million, up from $17.23 million in March 2018, according to data provided by the city. The numbers include permits valued at $50,000 or more.

Minneapolis-based Ryan Cos. US Inc. accounted for nearly half of the March 2019 activity based on dollar value. On March 1, Ryan pulled a permit for $21.86 million worth of construction on the former and future O'Gara's Bar & Grill location at 150 Snelling Ave.

Ryan is building 163 apartments and a new home for O'Gara's on the site. Besides the apartments, the mixed-use project includes 4,000 square feet of retail in a five-story building. O'Gara's will anchor the retail portion.

Wood framing is well underway and the project is moving along on schedule, said Tony Barranco, Ryan's senior vice president of real estate development.

"We are excited to have the building start to take some vertical shape now that we are out of the ground and into the air. Everything is on track and going fine," Barranco said Thursday.

"We had a couple of days [to make up] between the polar vortex and some rain. Knock on wood, we have had some cooperative weather since. We remain on schedule for opening in the early part of 2020," he added.

Also in March, St. Paul-based Sheehy Construction pulled a $1.95 million permit to re-glaze and waterproof windows around the rotunda at the Minnesota History Center, 345 Kellogg Blvd. W., among other fixes, according to permit reports.

Crews will refurbish the curtain wall in the rotunda and replace windows with curtain wall at the top of the faade facing John Ireland Boulevard. Some stonework will be removed and reinstalled, according to the Minnesota Department of Administration.

Jessica Kohen, media relations director for the Minnesota Historical Society, said in an email there was some "minor water intrusion in some office spaces and condensation issues in a number...

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