EPIC Companies Purchases Midwest Federal Building in Downtown Minot
December 8, 2021
EPIC plans to renovate the building into commercial space and apartments.
(Minot N.D. – December 6th, 2021) EPIC Companies, based out of Minot and West Fargo, ND, closed on the Midwest Federal Building in downtown Minot on Monday. It was recently a finalist for the new City Hall, but otherwise it has been permanently vacant for nearly 20 years. The M building was last temporarily used by construction managers on the downtown parking ramps, which were finished in early 2016.
Midwest Federal also known as “The Big M and M Building” first opened in 1963 as Minot Federal Bank. Minot residents remember multiple businesses being in this location including: The Shirley Room, Arnold Theater, Embers, Midwest Federal Bank, Blue Cross Blue Shield, New York Life, Minot Center for Family Medicine, and many others. Our current Vice President Kamala Harris was based out of the building in 2011 when she was Attorney General of California while on the disaster relief board when the flood occurred in 2011. Her name tag is still there today!
The Big M on its roof established the eight-story former Midwest Federal Savings Bank as a Minot landmark, and many memories were made by folks who entered the building’s doors over the past 58 plus years. Due to its size and height, the M Building is visible from a large portion of the city, making it the focal point of downtown.
“It will be a tremendous boost to the community to have the Big M building revitalized and once again a productive asset for the Magic City,” said Mayor Shaun Sipma.
According to Governor’s Burgum’s Main Street Initiative, the main goal is keeping a bustling and busy downtown with prosperous businesses and accessible living. Governor Burgum’s Main Street initiative pushes for mixed-use properties and walkable districts. The future of this development heads towards action and entertainment providing a better quality of life for the community. The long-term plan for The Big M is to keep the look of the building with black glass and to restore the large, orange Big M that was placed on top in 1971. The original Big M was acquired by Chuck Kramer with I Keating Furniture World and donated to Magic City Campus in 2001 for Duane Carlson Field after the telemarketing firm ZTel replaced the M with a Z.
“The more and more we learn about downtowns, we have realized how important it is to restore the culture and continue to breathe life into the area. It seems downtowns are the heart of many cities and Minot’s is no different. With the addition of High Third, The Ironhorse and many more businesses in downtown Minot, we are proud to join other developers who have invested a lot to keep the area successful,” said McKenzy Braaten, Vice President of Communications at EPIC Companies. EPIC received the Main Street initiative award in 2019 at the Main Street Summit for their work in conjunction with the City of West Fargo revamping their downtown area.
“The sale of the former Midwest Federal Building is a sign of confidence in Minot and downtown. The building is an iconic part of Minot’s past and our skyline and we’re excited to see plans for its redevelopment and reuse.” said Josh Wolsky, Interim Direction of Minot Downtown Business and Professional Association.
It will bring back an underutilized building in downtown and spark life once again in it, improving the vertical landscape of the area. The Big M will have around 36 residential units, 10,000 square feet of commercial space, and the renovation is valued at $10+ million. EPIC also plans to develop a skyway connecting to the current Minot parking ramps to better utilize them and provide an enclosed walkway for residential and commercial tenants who want protected parking. Sitting vacant over the last few years, this building has not brought a large taxable value to the community, but after removal of asbestos and other building issues the tax value will be restored for this property.
“The future is mixed-use in order to maximize space and create valuable properties that cater to active communities we need to continue restoring properties we have as well as developing new ones,” said McKenzy Braaten, Vice President of Communications at EPIC Companies. “The EPIC team is proud to be a part of the Minot community with an office in town along with many of us having ties to the community. Charlie Muus, Vice President of Operations at EPIC, dad Dick Muus was the former president at Midwest Federal.”
Other notable Minot projects that EPIC has developed include Beaver Ridge, Park South I & II, Blu on Broadway (recently opened on October 1st) and in development is The Tracks. EPIC Companies has experience developing mixed-use buildings and entertainment spaces including The Lights in West Fargo, The Beacon in Grand Forks, the redevelopment of downtown West Fargo (Sheyenne Plaza, Pioneer Place, the POW/MIA Plaza and The Firm), Gateway by EPIC in downtown Fargo, and EOLA by EPIC in south Fargo just to name a few. EPIC Companies also has other projects in Bismarck, Fargo, West Fargo, Jamestown, Grand Forks, Minot, and Detroit Lakes.
EPIC Events, an offshoot of EPIC Companies, recently announced a partnership with the Norsk Høstfest to help co-promote the 2022 event. Dates for that were announced last month as September 28th, 29th, 30th and October 1st, 2022, with performing acts to be announced soon.
The planned architect of record is Ackerman Estvold with the construction being completed by Construction by EPIC. EPIC Management will be managing the commercial spaces and residential units.
For more information or to view EPIC Companies other developments head online at EPICCompaniesND.com.
About EPIC Companies
EPIC Companies is a local company that entails investment, development, and management. The firm works towards raising capital, developing projects, and managing property to enhance the community. EPIC Companies manages over 1000+ apartment rental units and over 350,000 square feet of commercial space in the Fargo-Moorhead, Jamestown, Bismarck, Grand Forks, West Fargo, Minot and Detroit Lakes and Perham, MN.
Rendering of the skyway connecting to the current parking ramp from M Building.