Developer buys former Blue Fox, two other buildings in Arden Hills

The former site of the Blue Fox Bar and Grill in Arden Hills has been purchased by Roberts Management Group of White Bear Lake for redevelopment, along with two other nearby land parcels.

The Arden Hills hotspot closed its doors for good on Sunday, April 7, due to “economic pressure that has made the Fox not viable,” according to the restaurant’s website.

Roberts Management Group has submitted an application to the city for a master and final planned unit development for a phased redevelopment of all three parcels.

“We are currently reviewing the application and master plan for the project,” Arden Hills City Planner Meagan Beekman said. “We are looking at the general concept for all three phases, but looking in greater detail at phase one right now.”

The first phase is for the property at 3833 Lexington Ave. where the former Blue Fox restaurant now stands, and includes demolition of the building, closure of all three access points to the land parcel and the construction of a 15,000 square foot retail center.

The retail center would have a brick and glass exterior façade and would include a large pedestrian plaza located along the west side of the building, new landscaping and seating areas for customers, according to a written statement from Roberts Management Group to city planning staff.

The building will be a multi-tenant retail facility at the former Blue Fox site. There will be 10 individual retail bays, which will include up to four restaurants and six retail stores, according to Roberts Management Project Manager Tim Gilbert.  

The application for the three-phased development is scheduled to go to the planning commission for discussion at its Wednesday, May 8 meeting.

Beekman said a public hearing has been scheduled for a Wednesday, June 5 planning commission meeting at city hall. She said the earliest the city council would vote on the planned unit development would be at the Monday, June 24 council meeting, which in Arden Hills must receive a four-fifths majority vote to move forward.

“We are working on lease agreements with future tenants right now, but nothing has been finalized yet,” Gilbert said.

He said demolition work would start this summer and the building of the new facility would begin shortly after -- pending approval from the city -- with construction completed by May, 2014.

Phase two of the proposed construction project would take place at 1130 Red Fox Road. The existing manufacturing warehouse on the property would be repurposed and reconfigured into a 17,000 square foot retail space, but would not take place for three to five years.

Phase three would take place even further out, five to 10 years from now, and would include the demolition of the existing building at 3771 Lexington Ave. near Target. Roberts Management has proposed building three new buildings on the property that would house 40,000 square feet of retail space and 22,000 square feet of office space with underground parking.

Additional details on this and other upcoming projects are available on the city’s website.

Joshua Nielsen can be reached at jnielsen@lillienews.com  or 651-748-7824.

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