Tallcorn renovation nearing completion

Excitement is building among CommonBond Communities and city of Marshalltown officials as work continues on the Tallcorn – one of Marshalltown’s largest housing and commercial development projects.

The residential portion of the $11 million dollar project is 85 percent complete, said Cynthia Lee, associate vice president of housing development of the St. Paul Minn. based nonprofit.

When complete, the project will have converted 65 efficiencies and one-bedroom apartments into 42 one-bedroom and seven two-bedroom apartments for lower income residents.

Four apartments are market rate, meaning they can be rented to non low-income tenants, Lee said.

“We are very excited about how much larger, and more modern the apartments will be than before,” Lee said. “And we think tenants will be excited as well.”

Lee said CommonBond has been accepting applications and expects occupancy in March.

Michelle Spohnheimer, director of Marshalltown’s Housing and Community Development department, shared Lee’s enthusiasm.

“The Tallcorn project is exciting,” she said. “Before long, tenants will be moving in and we will have an outstanding property to showcase in Marshalltown.”

Spohnheimer, who recently celebrated her 13th anniversary of employment with the city, said she could recall only three housing projects which could compete in scope with the Tallcorn.

“River Oaks, the Village Cooperative and Westown Apartments come to mind,” she said. “But the Tallcorn is by far the largest single historic preservation project ever undertaken in Marshalltown.”

Workers with Frerichs Construction Co., of St. Paul, Minn., the general contractor, and subcontractors, started work last year at the top of the eight-story building and have been working down.

Several of the upper floors are nearly complete, Lee said, and lack only floor coatings.

CommonBond received historic preservation credits and consequently, remodeled hallways and rooms to reflect historic aspects of the former Hotel Tallcorn, which opened Oct. 4, 1928.

Some hallways will have historic features, including former hotel room doors, Lee said.

Several of the remodeled apartments on the upper floors have portions of tile floor, reflecting the hotel’s heyday.

But modern conveniences abound, with each apartment having its own heating and cooling unit, new kitchen cabinets and modern bathroom fixtures.

Additionally, the building will have a computer lab, laundry room, arts and crafts area and fitness rooms.

On the Tallcorn’s north side will be a park and playground facility.

Historical Society of Marshall County photos show a pharmacy and other businesses on the ground-floor during the hotel’s halcyon period.

“A commercial real estate broker has been hired and is currently promoting the property now, Lee said. “Once construction is complete, it will be easier to market. Based on similar projects, we expect there to be potential for retail office and service businesses, among others.”

For more information, contact the Tallcorn at 1-877-302-6228.