Welcome a new co-op to Dinkytown

Riverton’s proposed co-op would add engagement, density and retail space to the neighborhood.

Riverton Community Housing proposed building a new cooperative housing complex near the business sector of Dinkytown where it already owns property. While cooperative housing makes up a small part of residences around the University of Minnesota campus, this property would increase student engagement and representation in the area, along with density and retail space.

Co-ops aren’t new to the neighborhoods surrounding the University. Riverton owns the massive Chateau Cooperative in Dinkytown and a few others in the campus area. However, luxury apartments have dominated recent housing developments.

Riverton would demolish its Fourth Street Housing Co-op for the proposed larger and denser building, a six-story, 66-unit apartment complex at the corner of 13th Avenue Southeast and Fourth Street Southeast.

With more residents — most likely students or University staff — the proposed co-op would offer more opportunities to engage. The co-op model allows tenants to elect a governing board in order to improve the property and plan events. Because the University area’s needs constantly change with new students, the co-op model allows students to directly have a hand in adapting communities. Students and co-op tenants told the Minnesota Daily that Riverton’s Chateau was also more affordable than some other options.

In addition, the proposed co-op would include more than 2,300 square feet of retail space. This is an important feature for a residence across the street from Dinkytown’s business sector.

While this proposed development wouldn’t revolutionize Dinkytown, it would greater diversify the area’s residences. Let’s hope this model grows.