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Via Sol, Surpassing the Conventional Apartment

Sustainability across the PLACE St. Louis Park community

Thank you for your interest in PLACE’s Via Sol community in St. Louis Park. This week, we’re talking about the many ways that this community is different from a conventional apartment building.

A lot of apartments have been built in the Twin Cities over the last ten years and almost all of them have been the same in certain respects. Via Sol is very different.

Happy learning and happy living!


The PLACE Team:

Chris Velasco Elizabeth Bowling Alice Hiniker Todd Bagby

Most Apartments Are the Same

Most of the new apartments around the Twin Cities differ from each other mostly by location. They are made from the same toxic materials, they burn and waste fossil fuels, they exchange contaminated air, they are devoid of art and imagination, and they isolate people from one another. Small wonder that studies show that people living in sustainably-designed LEED apartments actually take five fewer sick days per year. And most apartments have little access to mass transit, or a walkable, bikeable neighborhood. Most apartment dwellers report that they do not know their neighbors, which increases stress and mistrust.

Via Sol Is One of a Kind

First of all, PLACE is a nonprofit, meaning we have a mission to serve people and the planet, not profits. We are thrilled to offer a totally different way of living; a sustainable, transit-oriented community. Here are just some of the ways that Via Sol is different from a conventional apartment:

  1. Located at the Wooddale Light Rail Station and on the bike trail

  2. Shared electric cars

  3. Urban art forest

  4. Live/work space for creatives (artists, artisans and makers)

  5. Powered by renewable energy

  6. Nontoxic building materials

  7. Filtered air

  8. Community gathering spaces

  9. LEED certified for sustainable design and healthy homes

  10. Natural food grown on site

PLACE has imagined Via Sol to be a wholly new way to live. We know that you’ll find it a rewarding place to live, work, and connect.

Connect on Martin Luther King, Jr. Day - Monday, January 17

In the spirit of connection, community, and opportunities for all to thrive, let us all recognize Martin Luther King, Jr. Day on Monday! “Today, it is the only federal holiday designated as a national day of service to encourage all Americans to volunteer and improve their communities” - NMAAHC Smithsonian

Volunteer! Find an opportunity to volunteer near you (or virtually) through VolunteerMatch.

Unable to volunteer? Consider donating to a charity supporting Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s efforts toward a more just America, such as nonprofits who work toward racial equity, economic justice, voting rights, and ending poverty.

Learn more about Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.!

“We adopt the means of nonviolence because our end is a community at peace with itself. We will try to persuade with our words, but if our words fail, we will try to persuade with our acts.” - Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Via Sol

PLACE’s Via Sol community, a sustainable, transit-oriented community in St. Louis Park, Minnesota, producing its own food and energy, filled with art and imagination, offers healthy apartments and live/work space to households across the income spectrum.

Via Sol is currently under construction and expected to open in summer of 2022. Applications are now being accepted. For more information:


Call 612.444.2VIA (612.444.2842)

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