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New River North Project: DRIVE 2

Back in August 2012, we looked at a mixed-use office project, in the TAXI development, called DRIVE. After about a year since DRIVE has been completed, and fully leased, Zeppelin Development has broken ground on a new office project right next door to DRIVE. The new mixed-use office building, DRIVE 2, will be very similar to its neighbor; providing new-generation work spaces for both small entrepreneurial businesses and mid to large size companies.

Here is a map with the project site outlined. The building directly north of the site is the first DRIVE office building which is situated just behind the original TAXI redevelopment.

In the first picture, you can see the completed and fully leased DRIVE office building. DRIVE 2 will be almost identical to its neighbor in both massing and exterior materials. The new building will feature 50 glass garage doors to provide natural light, a 2,500 square-foot rooftop conference center and a bike shop.

 

DRIVE 2 broke ground in late October and is quickly making its way out of the ground. The elevator cores have already topped out at 4-stories and the steel structure is not too far behind. Here are some additional pictures of the project.

 

The 60,000 square-foot office building is expected to be complete by Spring 2014.

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15 Comments

  1. chachafish says:

    Interesting update. Thanks :)

  2. Jim Nash says:

    Love the way the finished building breaks out of the box! The angled elevator shaft in front, with dozens of little windows, the upper floors, each extending a little more over the ground surface wall, the receded windows behind the metal curtain wall, giving the whole façade a muscular feel. This is imaginative architecture, and I hope to see more buildings around Denver from this team. Only close neighbors will be able to appreciate this structure — so let’s hope we see this builder’s work along a big main street, like Broadway.

  3. Thanks for the update Ryan. Seeing more and more commercial and residential real estate popping up. Thinking 2014 will be a good year for the Colorado economy. Don’t believe I’ve seen Drive 1 yet, or just didn’t pay it any attention if I did. In any case it’s a good look for that area.

  4. Kyle says:

    Looks awesome!!

  5. Nathanael says:

    Looks like N Metro Rail should run right behind this?

  6. Isaac Z. says:

    I’m getting hungry for more infill updates! ! ! feed me! :)

    can you tell me what’s going on with the project on 18th and vine… or somewhere around there… I’ve project was left just as a steel frame for years… now they’re continuing the project(s) but with from frames and only left the stair cases as steel…lmk.

  7. Ty says:

    I am always pro-infill, but I wish developers would focus more strongly on areas downtown and immediately adjacent. RiNo is okay, as long as the growth is east of the Platte River. Everything on the Brighton Blvd side just seems like a waste. It is not bicycle or pedestrian friendly at all, even when using the river path, and the blvd itself is dirty, not well kept, lacks suffecient sidewalks, and carries way too many buses and trucks for comfort. Meanwhile, Arapahoe sq and plenty of vacant lots downtown could provide a much greater immediate impact for infill, and they would contribute more to the fabric of the city. I was sorely disappointed in my single visit to the source – both because of the terrible location and the forced “public market attempt” fell well short of my expectations. I mean really, a butcher shop/florist? Trying to hard to be like Pike’s Public market and it just felt fake and pretentious. Just my opinion.

    • Jim Nash says:

      Hey Ty, I wish developers and the city government would work together in Arapahoe Square, along North Broadway, to build mid-to-high-rise housing, over big box grocery, drug, Target — whatever kind of retail that’s so missing from the Downtown area. Decades ago, 16th Street was abandoned by major department stores, like Denver Dry Goods and May D&F.

      Seems like planners only encourage retail along 16th — and ignore the tremendous potential of Broadway, extending north to a True Denargo Market, with a Trader Joe’s or whatever. If planners and developers want the housing infill to really take off, they’ve got to get more retail going than just one King Soopers at Union Station. Thousands of new Downtown residents still have to go to surrounding neighborhoods for basic groceries and stuff, that people should be able to WALK to, Downtown.

      The huge infill retail lag shows a major flaw in the city’s central core planning. What’s the problem? Lack of tax incentives? Unrealistic parking requirements? If thousands of new apartments are being built — and rented — where are all these people supposed to shop, especially without a car? Where do people shop in Manhattan? In the suburbs? Of course not — they shop downstairs, around the corner, up the block.

      Arapahoe Square is still very heavy with homeless shelters, and the neighborhood has a high ratio of homeless people on the sidewalks. They will always be there. But with high-density retail and housing along Broadway, the streets will eventually be filled with workers, shoppers, renters, condo owners. To get a more prosperous majority of people in the neighborhood, the city has to encourage retail, including nightclubs and restaurants. But first, at least a supermarket, and a big drugstore, and a Target. All with many stories of housing, above. It can be done, but it takes leadership from city government.

      • Dan says:

        Amen Jim! Well said and I agree with the tremendous need for real retail in the downtown core. That and intra-city transit are the 2 big issues the city leaders need to address in order for Denver to truly become a 24/7 city.

      • Jerry G says:

        Granted Arapahoe Square has some significant liabilities. But it also lacks what those other sites have: proximity to community assets. Namely, the Platte River, transit, LoDo, etc. The light rail does not even technically have a stop in Arapahoe Square. These deficits were addressed in developing the section for Arapahoe Square in the Northeast Downtown plan. It calls for the establishment of catalysts to help spur development by providing community assets. Revamping 21st into a ‘Festival Street/Bike Boulevard’ to help connect Arapahoe Square to the Ballpark, LoDo, RiNo neighborhoods and the placement of a park/public place within A. Square. A grand square for Arapahoe Square, perhaps. The city should be putting their efforts into getting those put in place and then, with maybe some other incentives, private development will follow.

    • Artur says:

      Arapahoe Square has too many factors working against it to entice development, poor reputation, over-saturation of social services, entrenched land-owners, etc. I think in a decade the core of Arapahoe Square will remain in the same state it is now. There are some developments on the peripherally but those are all around vastly more desirable neighborhoods.

      • Jim Nash says:

        Artur, anyone considering renting, buying — much less building — in Arapahoe Square would be discouraged by your frank remarks. Totally agree with you about the over-saturation of social services, but all those blocks of empty parking lots, once developed, can oneday transform the “mix” on the streets, far-outnumbering the homeless and panhandlers.

        Los Angeles has the largest homeless population in the nation — mainly because it doesn’t snow here, and people don’t freeze to death. But expecting them to “move on” or just disappear is unrealistic. In the news media, we refer to a similar area of Downtown LA as Skid Row, without blinking. To expect any American downtown — including Denver — to be free of street people is unrealistic. They will always be with us.

        But Arapahoe Square can be transformed, if planners and politicians want to make it happen.

        First, CHANGE THE NAME of the neighborhood — which says nothing about the location — to North Broadway. Make the city’s biggest street the centerpiece of commercial development. It cuts directly through Downtown, Civic Center, the arts district of the Golden Triangle. Between 20th and the “Denargo Market” fantasy (no market), could be high-rise housing, above a huge City Market area, serving the greater Downtown. Seattle, Baltimore, San Francisco, Philadelphia, Chicago — every major city has a big, turbulent Downtown place to SHOP FOR FOOD.

        Baffling to me how Denver planners see only neighborhoods and zoning — but not Big Streets as focal points. Seems like they’re still in shock from the self-destructive Urban Renewal that gutted Downtown half a century ago, which contributed so much to the decline of the big stores along 16th Street. And they still cling to the idea that only “high end” retail along 16th is desirable. North Broadway is ideal for high-rise over big-box grocery and retail.

        In the immense public discussion and planning around Union Station, retail — especially food shopping — was an afterthought. It was all about transportation/housing/office space. But where was a City Market — not just a King Soopers, but dozens of specialty food stores — in the urban mix? Nowhere.

        Again, if the goal of Infill is filling the parking lot donut around Downtown with housing and workplaces, where do all these thousands of new Urbans get their food? North Broadway sits there, waiting, its obvious potential invisible to the politicians and planners who aren’t leading.

        Sorry to rant, but come on. Take a trip to Philly, Seattle, Chicago’s North Michigan Avenue, and go shopping. Buy specialty foods. All in walking distance from high-density housing. A no-brainer, except for Denver’s city government.

  8. John K says:

    I’m with Isaac. Need new fix. Ryan takes 9k photos and suddenly he is burned out?? :)

  9. Jason C says:

    @Ty, are you aware that Brighton Blvd will be remade, and that the Department of Public Works is considering cross sections that include trees, art and a separated bike lane? Also in the works is a pedestrian bridge from 36th on the east over the tracks to 35th on the west. With a light rail station at 38th and Blake, a pedestrian bridge connecting the development and businesses on one side of the tracks with The Source, the new Great Divide Brewery (among others) and Industry (a shared office space) as well as housing and various art galleries this section of town has the potential to really come together. There is obviously opportunity available for continued infill in Arapahoe Square and other parcels in downtown but that doesn’t mean that development shouldn’t continue along the Platte. Hopefully we will have more public market type building that sprout in some of those parcels. I will concede that we need to find a way to grant places like the Source a building wide liquor license so that you could walk around with your beer or cocktail.