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Broadway Plaza height: 328 feet, plus 8

Fir tree adds holiday touch to Rochester's tallest building

By Jeffrey Pieters

jpieters@postbulletin.com

On Wednesday, the highest tree in Rochester was an 8-foot fir.

The tree had a little help, of course. It was lifted by a crane to the top of Broadway Plaza, the high-rise under construction in the city's downtown. It will stay there through the holidays.

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The building "topped out" this week at 328 feet, making it the tallest building in Rochester and the tallest in the state outside of Minneapolis and St. Paul.

Builders poured the floor for the top story, the 29th, and will be finishing the roof over the next several months, said Evan Casey, project manager for the building owner, Rochester Development Inc.

RDI is a subsidiary of Royal Management &; Development Inc. of Annandale, Va.

Construction is scheduled to finish in April. With most of the exterior done, work is now focused inside the building, Casey said.

Working from the bottom up, crews have installed wallboard up to the 20th floor, cabinets to the 15th floor and carpet to the 5th floor.

Broadway Plaza will have 146 apartment units, rented mostly to business people and Mayo Clinic visitors making extended stays in the city. Units are expected to be furnished and ready to rent by May or June.

Twenty-four of the units will be one-bedroom apartments; 119 will be two-bedrooms. Two will be five-bedroom units, and there will be a penthouse on the top floor.

Rents have not been set, but are expected to range between $3,500 and $4,500 a month, depending on the size of the unit and the length of stay.

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The building will contain a swimming pool, spa and fitness center. The bottom two floors will be devoted to retail, and the building will be linked via skyway to a neighboring parking ramp and the rest of the downtown skyway network.

Imad Baker, president of Royal Management, was on hand for the ceremonies Wednesday.

He said commercial spaces may not be ready as soon as the apartments. His firm will begin seeking commercial tenants soon after the beginning of next year, Baker said.

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