"I think office continues to remain fairly soft. There isn't any real immediate demand or market to support that kind of development," Menke said. Menke noted that Opus is also interested in future downtown residential projects; Opus was part of the team that developed Grant Park and The Carlyle. Houston-based Hines Interests is another major player in the downtown Minneapolis market. "We are a developer, so we're always interested in looking at opportunities to put together a new development. As to the when, that's probably anybody's guess at this point in time," said Bob Pfefferle, marketing manager with the local office of Hines. "I think we're a ways off yet before we get to that point that economics justify new construction."
Hines is developing Twinsville, a project that will be anchored by a new baseball stadium and could include potential office development.
"We are and have seen some unsolicited interest from some suburban users around the Twinsville site as part of a mixed-use development," Pfefferle said. "That's relatively new. " Pfefferle said the inquiries came from "larger users."
Hines is also part of the development team at The Nicollet, a planned downtown condo tower. There's been some speculation in downtown real estate circles that the project could go commercial instead, but Pfefferle dismisses those rumors. "We're still committed to making that a residential project," he said.