(Missoula Current) A privately funded workforce housing project plans to break ground in the Old Sawmill District this fall, offering 19 loft studio and one-bedroom apartments.

Ed Wetherbee, one of the developers behind the Old Sawmill district, said the project will include several three-story buildings on the south side of Wyoming Street.

“Warehouse Flats serves to provide a housing option that will be attractive to first-time home buyers and geared towards Missoula’s workforce, those possibly looking for a Missoula 'landing' spot, or investors looking for income property,” Wetherbee said in a statement on Tuesday.

As planned, each unit will measure around 800 square feet and include one parking spot in a planned garage, along with bike parking and storage. The condos will also include 10-foot ceilings and large windows with a market price set at $450,000.

Wetherbee said the project was driven in part by the need to offer housing at a price that's attainable to Missoula's skilled workforce. The median price of a home in the city currently stands at around $535,000, which remains out of a reach even for well-paid employees.

“It provides another ownership option in the Old Sawmill District, one that leans towards a younger demographic, encouraging the growth of a diverse group of residents in the neighborhood,” said Wetherbee.

With pricing in mind, Wetherbee said the condos will be sold with base finishes, though buyers can add upgrades during the preconstruction sale. The two buildings are expected to be completed by late next year.

Housing construction in the Old Sawmill District in Missoula. (Martin Kidston/Missoula Current file)
Housing construction in the Old Sawmill District in Missoula. (Martin Kidston/Missoula Current file)

Dubbed Warehouse Flats, the project is the latest to land in the Old Sawmill District, which recently saw the completion and opening of a new office building now occupied by the tech company Cognizant-ATG.

A separate housing phase of the Old Sawmill District is also under construction north of Wyoming Street. Warehouse Flats will bring additional residential offerings to the growing neighborhood near downtown Missoula.

“We're excited to bring a new product to the market that will help make home ownership more attainable,” said Leslie Wetherbee, the broker and co-developer in the project.

Wetherbee said more than $100 million in capital has been brought to the district, which now includes a number of condominiums, student housing, office buildings and other products.