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Downtown Crossing gets OK to construct building bump-out

Some physical changes to Downtown Crossing will be happening soon, with a new tenant opening shop next year.

The Detroit Lakes Development Authority approved DLM Properties’ request to bump out a portion of the middle building that once housed Maid Rite. Though developer/owner Jim Buus said they don’t have a signed lease yet, they have a strong potential tenant, and more space is needed inside.

The plan also includes enhancing the outdoor patio area that includes a metal fence to separate the seating area from the sidewalk.

“It’s a slight modification, in our opinion,” Buus said Tuesday.

Though the development group owns the land and there are no variances needed to make the changes, the DLDA and the city need to approve the plans because of design guidelines that were set when the land was sold for development a few years ago.

Between the buildings — O’Reilly Auto Parts is housed in the next building to the west — is a walkway that was designed from the beginning to allow customers to park in the back of the businesses and walk through to the front doors of the buildings.

But, developer/owner Brent Kuehne said, most of the businesses enhanced their back entrances so much that people use those rather than walking through to the front of the building. Therefore, the walkway isn’t utilized much at all.

With the addition to the middle building, the narrowest point between the two buildings will be five feet-three inches, which passes fire code, they said.

Buus said they are sensitive to the area and would agree to do more lighting if it’s needed for safety purposes.

The DLDA voted unanimously to approve the request, with member Mike Stearns abstaining.

The city council will also need to approve the request because of design guidelines.

Also at the DLDA meeting on Tuesday, members discussed the closing on purchasing the Bremer Bank-owned property that once housed Miguels.

The city is purchasing the land for about $185,000, which will then square off the piece of property the city has to sell between Bremer Bank and McKinley Avenue.

The matter was unique in the sense that it included a parking agreement that Bremer Bank had with the Lincoln Professional Building for parking spaces.

The city will now have a 2.6-acre piece of land to sell for development.

Follow Pippi Mayfield on Twitter at @PippiMayfield.