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Buckingham Companies To Handle Ralston Creek North Development Project In Arvada

31 Jul 2014, 4:26 am

By Ioana Neamt, Associate Editor

The Arvada Urban Renewal Authority has chosen Indianapolis-based Buckingham Companies to handle the development of Ralston Creek North, a 14-acre site formerly known as ‘the Arvada Triangle’. The shortlist for the project also included Loftus Developments LLC.

“It was a hard decision for the Board as both finalists – Loftus Development and the Buckingham Companies team – put together terrific proposals,” says AURA Director Maureen Phair. “In the end, the Board chose to work with the Buckingham Companies team because of their project vision, integrated team approach, and overall business philosophy: they develop, own and manage their projects for the long term.”

The Buckingham Companies team consists of Buckingham Cos., the Urban Investment Group and Larimer Associates.

The development site is located within the Ralston Creek District in south central Arvada, a once popular retail and entertainment destination for community members. Over the years, the site has become run down, with many retailers shutting down their businesses. Formerly known as ‘the Triangle’, the Ralston Creek District is comprised of three major shopping centers built in the 1960s.

According to the Arvada Urban Renewal Authority, the Ralston Creek North redevelopment project is meant to transform the northern center into a vibrant mixed-use destination for the Arvada community. The area is conveniently located between two new RTD commuter rail stations, Olde Town Station and Kipling Ridge Station, set to open in 2016. Additionally, a new 138,000-square-foot Walmart store is scheduled to open in the area in 2015, according to the City of Arvada.

Ralston Creek North is expected to become a highly popular destination for the citizens of Arvada, comprising both commercial and residential space. According to the Citizens for a Livable Ralston Community, the Buckingham Companies project proposal includes apartment buildings with underground parking, retail and entertainment facilities, as well as bike and pedestrian paths. The redevelopment site is in close proximity to the 20-acre Ralston Creek Park and the 133-acre Lutz/Stenger Sports Complex.

 Image courtesy of the Arvada Urban Renewal Authority

New Class AA Spec Building Coming To Denver’s Belleview Station

24 Jul 2014, 7:06 am

by Ioana Neamt, Associate Editor

One Belleview Station, a Class AA, LEED Gold office building is coming to Denver’s downtown district. The transit-oriented, 16-story building will feature 310,000 square feet of office space and is a rare speculative development in the Denver area.

Denver-based real estate firm Prime West purchased the land in 2013 and will co-own the building with New York-based real estate investment firm Goldman & Sachs. Front Range Land and Development is the master developer, while famed architecture firm Gensler will handle the rendering and design work.

One Belleview Station is conveniently located at the intersection of I-25 and Belleview Avenue and is surrounded by the Denver Technological Center. In addition, the structure is in close proximity to various Denver cultural and leisure destinations, including the Curtis Arts and Humanities Center, the Denver Art Museum, the Denver Zoo and the Denver Athletic Center. According to the official Belleview Station website, premier surrounding residential neighborhoods have an average household income of over $100,000. The LEED Gold building is expected to become a popular attraction for career-driven professionals in the Tech Center area. Steve Clarke, Prime West CEO, told the Denver Business Journal that speculative development is possible in the Belleview area due to the proximity to public transportation and surrounding amenities. One Belleview is within walking distance from the Technological Center, premier residential neighborhoods and school districts, as well as multiple dining and retail attractions.

The Class AA building will include four levels of parking space, immediate access to public transportation, fitness center, outdoor plaza areas and retail and restaurant space on the ground level. Construction on the $90 million office building is set to begin in January 2015. According to the Belleview Station website, the mixed-use development will include 2.200,000 square feet of office space, one or two hotels, 1,800 residential units, and 250,000 square feet of retail space.

Rendering courtesy of Prime West 

Hines to Build New 40-Story Office Tower in Denver

25 Jun 2014, 11:36 pm

By Gabriel Circiog, Associate Editor

Hines recently announced plans to build a new 40-story office tower in Denver. The new construction will become the first office building of this height built in nearly three decades and, upon completion, will be one of the tallest office buildings in Denver.

Located at 1144 Fifteenth, between Arapahoe and Lawrence Streets, the 640,000-square-foot, Class A office building will feature numerous in-building amenities including a state-of-the-art, 5,000-square-foot fitness facility; an auto detailing service in the parking garage; and ground floor retail. The premier high-rise office building will be situated in the heart of Denver’s amenity-rich LoDo area, adjacent to the Four Seasons hotel and condominiums, just one block away from Larimer Square.

“We are very excited about introducing this new icon to the Denver skyline. 1144 Fifteenth will set a new standard for Denver’s high-rise office space and enhance our city’s urban experience. It has been nearly three decades since Denver has received an office tower of this size and scale. We strongly believe that the quality and location of this building will be appealing to a wide range of tenants and ultimately, once finished, we feel this will be the premier asset in all of the Rocky Mountain west,” stated Hines Managing Director, Jay Despard.

Designed by Pickard Chilton, the building will feature 25,000-square-foot floor plates, 10-foot ceilings on typical floors, floor-to-ceiling glass and the best parking ratio of any high-rise Class A office building downtown.

“With all of our equity funding now in place, we are building this project on a purely speculative basis, which is a testament to the strength of the Denver market and our confidence in its future growth. We plan to own this building for a long time, and will be delivering the high level of quality expected from a new Hines office tower. Pickard Chilton and Hines have an exceptionally successful track record of developing best-in-class office projects in North America, and we are pleased to be delivering the next landmark office tower in Denver,” said Hines Senior Managing Director, Charles Elder.

Construction will begin in May 2015 and will be completed in December 2017. The lead broker of the project is Peter Schippits with JLL.

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The Curtis, Denver’s Pop Culture Hotel, Completes Renovation

18 Jun 2014, 6:25 pm

By Gabriel Circiog, Associate Editor

The Curtis – a Doubletree by Hilton has recently completed an extensive $7 million property renovation that included upgrades to all guest rooms and a lobby expansion.

Located at 1405 Curtis Street, the 336-room property is Denver’s only pop culture hotel. The downtown Denver hotel now features “hyper themed” suites on each of its 13 themed guest floors. The suites include custom art by Colorado artists, unique flooring and decorations. For example: on the 8th “Sci-Fi” floor there is a Star Trek Enterprise room featuring out-of-this-world futuristic flooring, Lucite furniture and cast photos; on the 13th “Dun Dun Dunnnnn!” floor is located the Ghostbusters room which includes lime green “Slimer” floor tiles and a ghostly 3-d art illusion; on the 15th Floor “Mad About Music” the Jimmy Buffett room features ocean blue floor tiles and giant Margaritaville mural highlighting top hits like “Five O’clock Somewhere”; and on the 16th floor “Pedal to the Medal” – “Shake & Bake!” the Talladega Nights suite features custom movie wall art and over-the-top NASCAR trinkets.

The Curtis has also added two new one-bedroom suites to complement its existing Rolling Stone Suite – the KISS Suite and the Spice Girls Suite. Each suite is 800 square feet and features a separate living room and master bedroom. The newly renovated and expanded lobby now features complimentary coffee service for guests daily until 10 a.m. and a business center.

“We really wanted to let the hotel’s funky personality shine through even brighter with this renovation,” said JoAnn Elston. “Our new lobby features a lot more seating and is a much more relaxing place for guests to gather.”

The Curtis opened in 2007 and is managed by Denver’s Sage Hospitality. The hotel features over 28,000 square feet of event space and a large fitness center.

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Image Courtesy of: www.thecurtis.com

ViaWest Opens New $208 Million Data Center

12 Jun 2014, 3:31 pm

By Gabriel Circiog, Associate Editor

ViaWest has recently opened its latest Denver-area data center in order to meet the growing demand from companies for cloud computing.

The Denver Business Journal reports the new $208 million data center has become the company’s fifth in the Denver area. ViaWest’s 210,000-square-foot Compark Center is located just east of Centennial Airport and features 140,000 square feet of raised floor with space for future growth. The company has invested around $208 million in the construction of the center and estimates that the total investment could reach $316 million over the next seven years.

Plans to build the Compark Center were announced in October 2013 and at the time, Nancy Phillips, president and CEO of ViaWest, said: “As a Denver-based company for more than fourteen years, we are proud to expand our presence in this region to further serve our existing customers and meet the strong demand we’re seeing nationwide. Our dedication to delivering high-touch customer service and a growth path of IT capabilities continues to uniquely position us in the market. We are eager to grow our footprint with the addition of another industry-leading data center facility.”

ViaWest currently owns and manages 27 data centers in the Rocky Mountain west, Texas, Oregon and Minnesota.

“ViaWest is a key part of the Colorado technology ecosystem,” says Kristin Russell, CIO for the State of Colorado. “We are so pleased to see ViaWest continue to grow and strengthen its much-appreciated commitment to the IT community in Colorado. Their continued expansion is a strong indicator of the growth within Colorado’s technology sector.”

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Image Courtesy of: www.viawest.com

SpringHill Suites Denver Downtown Becomes First LEED Gold Certified Hotel in Denver

5 Jun 2014, 12:58 am

By Gabriel Circiog, Associate Editor

The SpringHill Suites Denver Downtown at MSU Denver recently announced it has received LEED Gold certification for New Construction from the U.S. Green Building Council.

The $45 million SpringHill Suites Denver Downtown hotel is owned by the Metropolitan State University of Denver and managed by Sage Hospitality. The hotel has become the first metro Denver hotel to receive LEED Gold certification and the second in the SpringHill Suites by Marriott brand portfolio.

The 150-suite hotel opened, alongside the 28,000-square-foot state-of-the-art Hotel and Hospitality Learning Center, in 2012. The public-private partnership between MSU Denver and Sage Hospitality created a dynamic environment for education and on-the-job training for students. The learning center is the first of its kind in the Rocky Mountain region and one of only 11 in the whole country.

“Sage Hospitality is dedicated to operating eco-friendly hotels, so we are extremely proud to receive Denver’s first LEED® Gold certification,” says Walter Isenberg, president & CEO of Sage Hospitality. “This property gives both business and leisure guests an amazing green lodging option in the heart of downtown Denver and we are using it as a model of sustainability for all future development projects.”

The hotel and learning center earned a total of 62 LEED points and their green features include: the use of high efficiency plumbing fixtures and low VOC paints and flooring; secure bicycle storage with lockers and changing rooms to encourage employees and students to use alternative transportation. Close to 20 percent of the building was constructed using recycled materials and more than 78 percent of material waste from the construction was recycled. Ninety percent of regularly occupied areas offer natural day lighting.

The downtown Denver hotel also features numerous amenities including a market, a fitness center, complimentary area shuttle service and complimentary hot breakfast. The SpringHill Suites Denver Downtown also offers 5,000 square feet of meeting and event space.

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Image Courtesy of: www.springhillsuitesdenver.com

City Office REIT Inc. to Acquire 197,000-Square-Foot Plaza 25 in Denver

28 May 2014, 10:01 pm

By Gabriel Circiog, Associate Editor

City Office REIT Inc. recently announced it has entered into an agreement to acquire Plaza 25 in Denver for a purchase price of $25.1 million. As major conditions to the acquisition have been satisfied, the transaction is expected to close in early June 2014.

Located in the Greenwood Plaza submarket of Denver, Plaza 25 is an office park featuring two three-story office buildings and one four-story office building. The combined structures offer 197,000 rentable square feet.

“We believe Plaza 25 represents an ideal first acquisition for City Office REIT. It is located in Greenwood Village, one of Denver’s top submarkets with proximity to executive housing, a strong educated employee base and an abundance of transportation networks including a light-rail station,” says James Farrar, CEO of City Office REIT.

Built in 1981, Plaza 25 was completely renovated in 2006. The property is flanked by the city’s Southeast Light Rail line and is within walking distance of the Arapahoe Station. Plaza 25 is currently 93 percent occupied and, based on the purchase price, is expected to generate an initial full-year cash net operating income yield of around 8.1 percent.

“The property is situated with Interstate 25 frontage and benefits from Greenwood Village’s numerous amenities,” Farrar says. “With its below market in-place rents and stable tenant base, we believe that Plaza 25 will continue to benefit from Denver’s strengthening leasing conditions and deliver our investors increasing cash flow. City Office REIT continues to review a strong pipeline of acquisition opportunities within our target markets and we remain focused on growing our portfolio and enhancing stockholder value.”

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Logo Courtesy of: www.cityofficereit.com

Brookfield Office Properties Inc. Sells 50 Percent Stake in Denver’s Tallest Building to MetLife

21 May 2014, 10:16 pm

By Gabriel Circiog, Associate Editor

Brookfield Office Properties Inc. recently announced it has sold a 50 percent stake in the Republic Plaza office building and entered into a 50/50 joint venture partnership with MetLife on the office tower in a transaction valuing the property at $480 million. Net proceeds to Brookfield are around $98 million. Brookfield will retain management and leasing responsibilities at the property.

“Brookfield looks forward to its continued ownership and operation of Republic Plaza and our newly formed joint venture with MetLife,” says Mark Brown, global chief investment officer of Brookfield Office Properties. “Our investments in the thriving Denver central business district continue to perform extremely well.”

At 56 stories in height, Republic Plaza is the tallest building in Denver. Built in 1984 and designed by Skidmore, Owings & Merrill, the skyscraper features 1,279,000 square feet of office space, 48,000 square feet of retail space and 511 parking spaces. The building is currently 95.2 percent leased with a weighted average remaining lease term of six years in place. The two largest tenants in the building located at 370 17th Street in Denver are Encana Gas & Oil and DCP Midstream. The two companies occupy just under 50 percent of the tower’s office space, with leases that expire only in 2019 and 2023, respectively.

“Republic Plaza is a trophy office tower in a core real estate market,” says Robert Merck, senior managing director and global head of real estate for MetLife. “Brookfield is an experienced and successful owner and operator of office properties and we are looking forward to expanding our partnership with them.”

Brookfield also owns and operates Denver’s second tallest building, 1801 California Street. The company recently completed a $50 million renovation program of the tower which included a new entrance plaza, interior lobby and restaurant.

Photo Courtesy of: www.brookfieldofficeproperties.com

United Properties Acquires 24 Acres and Expands EBC Development in Stapleton

14 May 2014, 3:20 pm

By Gabriel Circiog, Associate Editor

United Properties recently announced that it will expand its industrial development Enterprise Business Center. The Minneapolis-based developer and investor has acquired an additional 24 acres east of its EBC development from Forest City Stapleton Inc., the master developer for the redevelopment of Stapleton.

“We’ve had a tremendous amount of activity at EBC, which spurred our acquisition of additional land for more industrial development,” says Kevin Kelley, vice president, United Properties.

Situated near the southwest corner of Interstate 70 and Havana Street in Denver, the second phase of the EBC development is planned to feature a 467,000-square-foot bulk cross-dock industrial building.

The first phase of the Class A industrial development is currently under construction and upon completion will feature four buildings with 700,000 square feet of space. Around 600,000 square feet of that space is already leased or is pending final lease.

United Properties broke ground on the first two buildings in 2013 and Swire Coca-Cola USA has taken up all 257,000 square feet of one industrial building. Approximately 55 percent of the other 231,000-square-foot building is leased to Tire Rack and United Properties is in final negotiations with another tenant for 50,000 square feet of the remaining space. Tire Rack and Swire Coca-Cola USA are scheduled to move into the first two building in the summer of 2014.

United Properties recently started construction on the second set of industrial buildings at EBC, featuring a total of 100,000 square feet each. Two leases have been signed and one tenant will occupy an entire building while the other building is 44 percent pre-leased. The two tenants will move into the two new buildings in November 2014.

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Photo Courtesy of: www.uproperties.com

Griffis Residential Acquires 288-unit Apartment Community in Aurora for $40.8 Million

7 May 2014, 8:47 pm

By Gabriel Circiog, Associate Editor

Denver-based Griffis Residential recently announced the acquisition of the City Lights apartments. Located in Aurora, Colo. near the Fitzsimons Medical Campus, the Class-A community features 288 units and was purchased for $40.8 million.

The City Lights transaction was completed in a joint venture with PCCP LLC, becoming the fifth transaction for the partnership.

The City Lights acquisition is the second of the year for the company, taking the total tally of Class-A multifamily units that Griffis Residential owns and manages to 5,718. In January the company acquired The Wellington apartments, a 332-unit community in Las Vegas.

“City Lights apartments presents a compelling opportunity to apply our time-tested multifamily property investment strategy,” says Griffis Residential CEO David Birnbaum. “We see a bright future for City Lights due to its proximity to the strong labor market within the Fitzsimons Medical Campus and easy access to DIA and downtown Denver via the expanding public transit system adjacent to the property. Bolstered by a waiting list at City Lights for premium apartment units, we also have a ripe opportunity to implement our targeted capital improvement program, which is one of the cornerstones of our overall investment strategy.”

The company also announced that the newly acquired property will be renamed Griffis Fitzsimons South. Built in 2008, the community is located adjacent to the future 2nd and Abilene Street light rail station and just 2.5 miles from the Fitzsimons Medical Campus. The garden-style property offers six floor plans from one- to three-bedrooms, ranging in size from 637 to 1,439 square feet. Griffis Fitzsimons South features numerous high-end amenities including direct access garages and car ports, a clubhouse, fitness center, business center, heated pool and spas and a conference room.

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Photo Courtesy of: www.griffisfitzsimonssouth.com

Construction Starts on New Charter Technology and Engineering Center

1 May 2014, 2:28 am

By Gabriel Circiog, Associate Editor

Charter Communications Inc. recently announced that construction has started on the Charter Technology and Engineering Center, a new research and development facility.

Located in the Compark Business Campus Metropolitan District in unincorporated Douglas County, Colo., the new 85,000 square foot facility will house the Advanced Engineering teams, a large testing lab and resources for the Product, IT, Network Operations and Care teams.

Charter Technology and Engineering Center is expected to be operational by the end of the year and will ultimately house over 200 technical staff, including 55 new full-time employees and 45 new full-time contract positions. Charter

“Charter is pleased to build our lab in Colorado, a state with a long and impressive history in the cable industry,” says Senior Vice President and Chief Technology Officer, Jay Rolls. “Taking technical innovations from concept to customer involves a great deal of integration and testing. Having a state-of-the-art facility will allow Charter to expedite that process and give us an even higher degree of confidence in successfully rolling out amazing new innovations.”

The new facility, which will be double the size of the company’s current labs, will feature raised-floors and a climate-controlled lab environment which will allow Charter to develop and test it’s residential and commercial service offerings for high speed internet, video, voice, and mobile apps.

“CTEC is where we will move solutions through the product development cycle, from proof-of-concept, to Quality Assurance testing, to certification of readiness for launch, all focused on new cable telecommunications technologies,” Rolls says. “We also felt Denver was a great high tech recruiting location. There’s a large base of talent in the area, and it is also attractive to candidates who would consider moving. It’s a great environment where we can work on future technology and innovation.”

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HFF Secures Financing for Hudson’s Bay Centre in Denver and Bella Springs in Colorado Springs

23 Apr 2014, 6:47 pm

By Gabriel Circiog, Associate Editor

HFF recently announced that it has secured $21.5 million in financing for the Hudson’s Bay Centre. Working on behalf of the borrower, a 50-50 partnership between MDC Realty Advisors USA Inc. and Artis REIT, HFF placed the seven-year, 3.76 percent, fixed-rate loan with Principal Real Estate Investors. The loan proceed were used to acquire the Class A, 172,912-square-foot office building.

Located at 1600 Stout Street, along the mile long 16th Street Mall in the Midtown East section of Denver’s central business district, the 20-story transit-oriented Hudson’s Bay Centre is currently 96.4 percent leased. The property is adjacent to the 16th and Stout Station RTD light rail station and close to the 16th and California Station.

Over in Colorado Springs, HFF closed the $48.5 million sale of Bella Springs, a class A multi-housing community. HFF marketed the property on behalf of a joint venture between Griffis/Blessing Inc. and Consolidated Investment Group. The property was acquired by The Praedium Group and HFF secured a $31.525 million, five-year, 3.08 percent, interest only acquisition loan on behalf of the buyer through a life insurance company.

Located at 1050 Milano Point, the 364-unit Bella Springs was completed in 2001 and the property is currently 95 percent occupied. The community features numerous amenities, including a heated resort-style swimming pool and spa, fully-equipped fitness center, clubhouse, theater room and business center.

“In addition to its proximity to the prestigious United States Air Force Academy and the highly anticipated Copper Ridge mixed-use development, Bella Springs sits within one of Colorado Springs’ highest demographic areas.” says Jordan Robbins, director HFF investment sales team. “Furthermore, the asset is situated within the Academy School District 20, which is widely recognized as one of the top school districts in the State of Colorado. Coupled with outstanding panoramic views of the Rocky Mountains and numerous community amenities, Bella Springs presented prospective buyers with a high-quality investment opportunity with significant upside by continuing a proven value-add strategy.”

Photo Courtesy of: www.gbbellasprings.com

Northstar Commercial Partners Acquires Former Aurora Medical Pavilion

16 Apr 2014, 5:03 pm

By Gabriel Circiog, Associate Editor

Northstar Commercial Partners recently announced the acquisition of a four-story building, formerly known as the Aurora Medical Pavilion.

Located at 830 North Potomac Circle, the 113,568-square-foot building sits on 5.34 acres with interstate frontage on I-225 between 6th Avenue and Colfax Avenue. Northstar Commercial Partners plans to revamp the property for medical office use or to convert it to a patient/family housing facility dedicated to those people receiving medical care at nearby facilities.

“Aurora is a major center of medical services for our state, region and country,” says Brian Watson, founder and president of Northstar Commercial Partners. “We want to create a premier housing/care facility so that patients and families can stay in comfort while receiving world-class medical care nearby.”

According to Watson, the redeveloped facility could provide lodging for up to 200 people. The Colorado-based company is willing to develop the project and lease it to firms in the medical industry or related sectors. The major advantages of the property are the prime location, lower cost and immediate availability to serve the major medical facilities in the area.

The building was acquired for $3.4 million from NCWP – Aurora Medical Pavilion LLC by 830 Potomac LLC, an ownership entity created by Northstar Commercial Partners. Situated close to the University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus, the property is adjoined to the south by The Medical Center of Aurora, to the north is the Spalding Rehabilitation Hospital and the Ronald McDonald House. According to estimates from the Aurora Economic Development Council over $4 billion has been invested in new and existing medical facilities in the area.

Marriott Hotels Expands in Colorado with 215-Room Denver Marriott Westminster

11 Apr 2014, 8:39 pm

By Gabriel Circiog, Associate Editor

Etkin Johnson Real Estate Partners and White Lodging Services recently announced the opening of the full-service Denver Marriott Westminster hotel and Tiller’s Kitchen & Bar restaurant in Westminster, Colo.

The 215-room hotel broke ground in August 2012 and has become the first newly constructed, full service hotel in the Denver/Boulder corridor to open in over ten years. The six-floor Denver Marriott Westminster features 12,000 square feet of event, ballroom and meeting space and a new guestroom design.

Tiller’s Kitchen & Bar features a distinctly American menu character which celebrates the bounty of craft producers, local farms, Colorado Ranches and sustainable food sources.

“I am excited for the hotel opening and to represent the Marriott brand here in Colorado,” says Dave Kennedy, General Manager at Denver Marriott Westminster. “We are looking forward to welcoming guests and providing a quality experience for both visitors and those that live in the local community.”

Kennedy, in the past, was the general manager at the Renaissance Flatiron Hotel in Broomfield, Colo. and has joined White Lodging in 2002 as a regional director of training and recruiting. In 2003 he was promoted to general manager of the Boulder Marriott Hotel. Stasia Patience, with over 33 years of experience working for Marriott branded hotels, will join the Denver Marriott Westminster team as director of sales and marketing.

The Denver Marriott West also recently announced it has undertaken a $1 million renovation which aims to bring the beauty of its surroundings indoors. The renovation will cover all public spaces and the Copper Creek bar and restaurant, the casual American eatery undergoing a complete transformation.

Located at 1717 Denver West Boulevard, The Denver Marriott West, features 303 rooms and two suites. The hotel also features 15 meeting rooms with 10,300 square feet of flexible event space, two concierge levels, Starbucks, indoor and seasonal outdoor pools and a fitness center.

Rendering Courtesy of: www.marriott.com

KTGY Group Inc. Announces Phase III of the Vallagio at Inverness

3 Apr 2014, 6:06 pm

By Gabriel Circiog, Associate Editor

KTGY Group Inc., Architecture + Planning, recently announced that construction has started on Phase III of the Vallagio at Inverness. The transit-oriented master-planned development is located in southeast metropolitan Denver. Vallagio III, situated on the southeast corner of I-25 and Dry Creek Road, will add a total of 364 new homes to the project.

Developed by Englewood-based Metropolitan Homes Inc., Vallagio features a retail center, dedicated light rail station with a covered pedestrian bridge, open spaces and public art. Upon build-out Vallagio will include an estimated 1,000 residences.

Vallagio is situated just minutes from South Denver and Downtown, with easy access to the nearby light rail stop and I-25. Centennial Airport is less than ten minutes away and residents are close to numerous world-class resort amenities available at the Inverness Hotel, Conference Center and Golf Course.

On Lot 1 of the development, along the world-class Inverness Golf Course in The Resort Collection neighborhood, 36 for-sale single-story attached villas are under construction. Dubbed Taliesin Pointe, the lot features Ranch-style golf villas that vary in size from 2,800 to 4,700 square feet. After analyzing the previously designed footprints of Woodley Architectural Group Inc., the original architect, KTGY developed new plans for 30 of the units in order to meet the preferences of today’s buyers.

KTGY provided updates to the original design, provided by Kephart Architects, of Amberley Heights, a 96-unit luxury apartment community on Lot 2. The community features two four-story 48-unit mid-rise apartment buildings with one-, two-, and three-bedroom units averaging 1,600 square feet.

Over on Lot 3, KTGY designed Waller Commons, a 232-unit apartment community that features one- and two-bedroom units ranging in size from 800 to 1,350 square feet. The community will include a 4,500-square-foot clubhouse with a pool, fitness center, spa and community room.

“Residences at Vallagio are highlighted by classic exteriors, meticulously designed to mix seamlessly in a beautiful, park-like setting complete with landscaped gardens, public art, and a unique pedestrian orientation,” says Michael Ohara, AIA and principal at KTGY. “The homes offer low maintenance living; the lock and leave lifestyle that is desired by the diverse target market.”

Photo Courtesy of: www.vallagio.com

RingCentral Inc. Expands Denver Office

27 Mar 2014, 11:57 pm

By Gabriel Circiog, Associate Editor

San Mateo-headquartered RingCentral Inc. recently announced that the company is expanding its Denver office. The company provides cloud business communications solutions and had opened the Denver office in 2011 to increase sales, technical and customer support personnel as the company expanded nationally. Denver was chosen for its proximity to customers and access to a rich local pool of tech-savvy talent. In less than three years, the Denver office grew to over 100 employees. Over the next 12 to 18 months, RingCentral plans to nearly double its Denver area workforce.

Regional Vice President of Sales and General Manager of RingCentral’s Denver office, Dave DeMink, said in a statement: “The company is experiencing rapid growth and we are investing heavily in our most important asset, our people, as we innovate and scale. We expect the enterprise market to drive the next era in RingCentral’s success, and the Denver organization is a competitive differentiator for the company as we focus on growing local implementations and supporting our expanding up-market customer base.”

In other local news, the University of Denver recently announced that Denver philanthropists Anna and John Sie have donated $17 million to the University of Denver’s Josef Korbel School of International Studies. The donation is the largest single private gift in the 50-year history of the Josef Korbel School and will fund the construction of a 43,000-square-foot building for the school.

The new construction will adjoin the school’s existing Cherrington Hall and the Sié Chéou-Kang Center and will form the Anna and John J. Sie International Relations Complex. University Architect Mark Rodgers and architectural firm Anderson Mason Dale are collaborating on the final design and groundbreaking is scheduled to take place in late summer of 2014. The construction is planned to be completed by December 2015.

Logo Courtesy of: www.ringcentral.com

New African Cultural and Business Center, Afrikmall, Set to Open This Summer

24 Mar 2014, 5:19 am

By Gabriel Circiog, Associate Editor

An ownership entity created by Colorado-based Northstar Commercial Partners, 10180 E. Colfax LLC, has acquired a building in Aurora, Colorado and has provided a long-term lease to Afrikmall.

Afrikmall plans to create a Denver metro hub for the African community and will open its doors to Coloradans who want to experience African culture, food and entertainment.

“Our value proposition includes helping our tenants develop entrepreneurial skills and business experience through collaboration with other entrepreneurs across cultures, while enriching shoppers’ mall experience by enabling them to enjoy diverse African cultures,” says Cobina Lartson, founder and CEO of Afrikmall. “We invite the entire African Diaspora community and shoppers looking for an African experience to shop Afrikmall for a new taste of Africa right here in Colorado.”

Located at 10180 East Colfax Avenue, within the Aurora Cultural Arts District on the Colfax corridor, the property is at the center of a three-mile radius that includes the Stapleton and Lowry developments, and the University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus. A groundbreaking is scheduled to take place soon, with the grand opening of Afrikmall to take place this summer.

“The Afrikmall project pursues three objectives that we found compelling,” says Brian Watson, founder and president of Northstar. “It gives a home to small businesses serving their community, it creates a unique cultural experience that will draw many thousands of visitors, and it puts into productivity a vacant building in a prime area of Aurora. We are honored to help launch Afrikmall.”

Around two dozen businesses, including a variety of retailers and restaurants, are expected to locate within the 56,281-square-foot mall. At the moment the countries of origins represented by those business owners include Ehtiopia, Ghana, Ivory Coast, Liberia, Nigeria and Senegal, with others from Congo, Gambia, Kenya and other countries expected to follow.

“Afrikmall offers a truly unique business model for African entrepreneurs,” said Aurora Mayor, Steve Hogan. “I look forward to the rich cultural diversity Afrikmall will bring to Aurora, and I wish them tremendous success.”

Logo Courtesy of: www.afrikmall.com

Crow Holdings Capital Partners Acquires the Historic Brown Palace Hotel Portfolio

24 Mar 2014, 5:10 am

By Gabriel Circiog, Associate Editor

Crow Holdings Capital Partners recently announced that its Crow Holdings Fund VI has completed the purchase of Brown Palace.

The transaction includes the Brown Palace Hotel & Spa, as well as the adjacent Comfort Inn Downtown Denver, with a total of 472 guest rooms, 22,100 square feet of meeting space and five food and beverage venues.

Located at 321 17th Street in downtown Denver, the historic Brown Palace Hotel and Spa was built in 1892. It is the only downtown Denver hotel to receive the Forbes Four-Star and AAA Four-Diamond awards for over 30 consecutive years. The hotel features numerous amenities including a bar/lounge, restaurant, fitness center and business center.

The hotel will continue to be managed by an affiliate of Quorum Hotel Advisors, the property manager since 1987.

Talking about the acquisition, Diane Parmerlee, Crow Holdings Capital’s director of hotel investments, says: “We are pleased to add this landmark establishment to our Fund VI portfolio. The Brown Palace Hotel is well-aligned with Crow Holdings Capital’s hotel investment strategy, which is focused on upscale assets with strong underlying fundamentals.”

The Dallas-based asset fund manager, since 1998, has managed six private equity real estate funds with equity capital from these funds totaling approximately $4.1 billion. Fund VI is the largest fund, closing with capital commitments of $1.067 billion in August 2013. As of December 31, 2013 the real estate funds have acquired or developed over $12 billion in assets.

Image Courtesy of: www.brownpalace.com

Five Welton Street Projects Win $475,000 in Planning Grants Through the Welton Design / Development Challenge

7 Mar 2014, 1:15 am

By Gabriel Circiog, Associate Editor

Denver Mayor Michael B. Hancock and the Denver Office of Economic Development recently announced the winners of the very first Welton Design / Development Challenge, a new grant-making approach which aims to provide momentum to revitalize one of Denver’s most historic neighborhoods. The Challenge provides an opportunity to receive predevelopment funds for planning and design of commercial and mixed-use residential projects along the primary corridor of the Five Points business district.

In August 2013, Paul Washington, executive director of the Denver Office of Economic Development, said: “This challenge is a creative predevelopment strategy that will work to demonstrate the possibilities of the Welton Corridor to the larger development, investment and retail community. Through this approach, we will honor this historical neighborhood while igniting some real momentum into jobs, housing, and retail for Five Points. With its proximity to downtown, excellent transit, and historical cache, there is no reason that this important corridor can’t be the next retail and housing hot spot.”

Ten proposals were received in January and Denver’s Office of Economic Development community-based selection committee decided to fund the top five. Overall the ten applicant projects together represent $88 million of development activity which would create close to 500 jobs. The proposals feature 77,000 square feet of retail space, 63,000 square feet of office space and 277 new housing units.

The project winners were:

  • The Rossonian Development, located at 2600 block of Welton: The historic hotel will be renovated, restored and complemented by new, mixed-use construction. The 192,225-square-foot project will include 64 new residential units, office space, shopping, dining and venue options. Project award: $150,000.
  • Palisade Partners, located at 2460 Welton Street: Two adjacent vacant parcels will be developed into 82 apartments, 14 townhomes and over 3,000 square feet of ground-floor retail. Project award: $100,000.
  • Saint Bernard Properties, located at 2950 Welton Street: A 3,115-square-foot vacant lot will be transformed into a three-story, mixed-use building which will include four apartment units. Project award: $75,000.
  • The Arcade & Rosenberg’s Bagels, located at 2714 Welton Street: The historic Arcade Building will be renovated and transformed into 2,400 square feet of retail space and equal residential space on the upper floor to provide between two and four residential units. Project Award: $75,000.
  • nuROOT Innovative Office Space, located at 2942-2944 Welton Street: The project will feature 4,710 square feet of office space and 2,310 square feet for a new eating/drinking establishment. Project award: $75,000.

Logo Courtesy of Denver Office of Economic Development via Facebook.

Joint Venture Between Zocalo Community Development and Principal Real Estate Completes Sale of Residential Development at Union Station

26 Feb 2014, 4:28 pm

By Alex Girda, Associate Editor

Denver’s multifamily market recently recorded an important acquisition as an institutional client of Invesco Real Estate bought a residential complex from the partnership between Zocalo Community Development and Principal Real Estate Investors. The recently-completed apartment community is located in the city’s growing neighborhood of Union Station.

Cadence Union Station is a 219-unit residential is the first project of its kind to be opened in the area. The impact of the development became immediately apparent as the property quickly reached 20 percent occupancy in just one month since its opening. The interest generated by the property this close to its debut led to the current sale, and is indicative of the resurgence of Union Station. The Principal of Zocalo Community Development, David Zucker, recently said in a press statement that the company “had a distinct advantage by being the first to build in the Union Station neighborhood, acquiring what’s arguably the best location and building an asset that we believe will show itself to be one of enduring value.”

Developed at the core of the Union Station redevelopment which will eventually add a 22-bay underground bus terminal, an eight-track commuter rail station, as well as the renovation of the landmark that is Union Station this summer, Cadence will lead the way for the area in terms of residential appeal. The location also offers great proximity to two Light Rail stations, as well as the Denver International Rail line.

The community is LEED Gold certified by the U.S. Green Building Council, making it Zocalo’s fourth project in the Denver area to be awarded a LEED certificate. Cadence is the joint venture’s second of three development projects, with the first one, Solera, proving to be a resounding success when it was sold in 2011.  Equity for the project was provided by Principal Real Estate Investors’ Green Property Fund, a division that focuses on developing green certified multifamily projects.   

Image courtesy of cadenceunionstation.com

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