Case Study: Cottages at the COR

The Goal

Create an Aesthetically Pleasing Urban Streetscape Community

The City of Ramsey wanted to develop a community in the heart of its newly rebranded COR neighborhood. City leaders wanted high-density housing with porches and front doors along two of its main thorough ways, Ramsey Boulevard and Bunker Lake Boulevard. On top of the unique design requests, the City also wanted the homes built quickly with a variety of finishes and colors.

The Challenge

Unique Design Requests + Previous Development Work

This area had been part of a previous project where the developer had left the site unfinished after going bankrupt during the Great Financial Crisis. The Cottages at the COR were surrounded by current buildings, and the city wanted the new homes being built to match the aesthetic of the buildings currently there with front porches and doors facing the main roads.

The City also requested the homes be built much closer to the street than other metropolitan areas, with our build-to line set at about 12 feet.

The Solution

Rear-loaded Homes with Variety of Finishes

Centra came to the City with a design proposal unique to their requests which included detached single-family homes. Our team designed homes that were rear-loaded, meaning the garage faced away from the city street with garage access from a private road to create the aesthetic the City wanted while providing a quality product desired by homebuyers.

With a goal to build these homes quickly, Centra worked directly with city leaders to approve the site plan and architecture, getting 10 certificates of occupancy approved within the first year.

The Achievement

An Innovative Design Tailored to Ramsey’s Specific Needs

Ground broke on the development in 2019, with 40 homes built and sold over a 3-year period. The homes enhance the city’s vision for a more urban-style neighborhood. But nestled within the city’s COR neighborhood, the Cottages at the COR have all the amenities families desire in a suburban location. The community is connected by beautiful trails. There are nearby parks and a growing business district as well as excellent schools, making this a beautiful new construction community that will thrive for years to come.

Centra Homes has been excellent to work with. They've been transparent throughout the process, communicative, and flexible with adjustments - always working to align their interests with the city's goals.

- Meg Beekman, Community Development Director, Brooklyn Center, MN