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ISD 709 News

posted Dec 29, 2014, 12:18 PM by Communications ISD 709

Purchase Agreement Signed for Central High School Property

   (Duluth, MN – December 29, 2014) Representatives from ISD 709 and Harbor Bay Real Estate Advisors, LLC, announced today that they have entered into a purchase agreement for sale of the 77-acre Central High School site in Duluth, MN.  The terms of the purchase agreement include a $10,000,000 sale price and a closing to occur on or before July 31, 2015. 

   The Central High School building ceased being used as a school in June of 2011 and has been vacant since that time.   

   “Harbor Bay is extremely enthusiastic about the development potential at such a large and iconic site.  The possibilities are endless. In the coming months, we will be working closely with The City of Duluth on design, infrastructure and approvals.  We have already had interest from several users and construction could commence as early as 2015.” said Tom Lund, Principal and Co-founder of Harbor Bay.  

   “We are very pleased Harbor Bay Real Estate Advisors have offered to purchase the entire site,” said Kerry Leider, Property and Risk Manager for ISD 709.  According to Leider, the district had been working with the City of Duluth for the past several years to re-zone the property in order to sell it in parcels. Selling it in pieces could have taken up to five years or more.  Leider says this purchase agreement makes that unnecessary. 

   Leider says selling the property in its entirety will save the District the ongoing cost of utilities, insurance, maintenance, security and avoid direct involvement to upgrade public road and utility infrastructure. The Deed will include a restriction that prohibits the Buyer from using the property as a school for the purpose of conducting programs for children between the ages of 5 and 18.

   “The Duluth economy is strong and expanding.  Housing continues to be a significant need to accommodate the economic growth.  The redevelopment of the Central High site is an incredible opportunity to meet market demand by designing versatile housing options,” said Mark Bell, Principal and Co-founder of Harbor Bay.   “The site’s unique topography, combined with its views of the city lights and Lake Superior, together form an exquisite natural environment. We will carefully design a master-planned development that will preserve and showcase the site’s beauty. We are confident this will be a very desirable location for future residents.”

   Harbor Bay Real Estate Advisors are one of many developers the City of Duluth has been engaged with over the past couple of years, as the City continues to address a need for additional housing to meet the growing economy and population.

   “The sale of the Central High School site demonstrates the potential our city has in attracting experienced developers like Harbor Bay Real Estate Advisors to meet the housing needs of our changing and growing population. We’ve been proactively engaging community-minded developers throughout the region in an attempt to encourage the sort of development Duluthians will be proud of, and this shows our efforts are paying off. This is a very exciting step in the development of some of the land with the greatest potential in our beautiful city,” said Mayor Don Ness. 

   Harbor Bay estimates that the project will create significant local jobs including construction, design, and engineering, amongst others.

   About Harbor Bay Real Estate Advisors, LLC: Harbor Bay, with offices in Minneapolis and Chicago, is a real estate development, consulting and investment company.  Harbor Bay recently announced plans to redevelop the former Burger King at 21st Avenue E and London Road in Duluth, as well as several homes on the block.  That project is scheduled to include approximately 148 residential apartment units, coupled with 12,900 square feet of retail/commercial space.  More info can be found on Harbor Bay’s website: