Elan at Union Station Update #3

One of the most exciting projects in the Union Station redevelopment field has started to go vertical! The structure of Elan at Union Station, formally known as 20th and Chestnut, has broken the street level and looks like it is going to be taller than we anticipated.

What do I mean by “taller than we anticipated”? The ground floor of Elan at Union Station is going to house Downtown Denver’s first full service grocery store, and instead of the standard floor-to-ceiling height used in apartments, approximately 10 feet, the ground floor will have a floor-to-ceiling height of 28 feet. Because of that, the building will have the presence of a 7-story building while still only rising five stories. Here are some pictures of the project site.



Construction keeps moving forward in the Union Station neighborhood! I’m sure many residents around this area are looking forward to this project’s completion.

By | 2016-12-04T13:07:33+00:00 February 22, 2014|Categories: Infill, Residential, Union Station, Urbanism|Tags: |11 Comments


  1. Jim Nash February 23, 2014 at 1:40 am

    A few years ago we were seriously looking for a Downtown condo or townhouse. It’s the most diverse and interesting housing market in the city, but we chose to buy in another part of Denver for one key reason: no grocery store within walking distance. This new King Soopers finally provides the missing link in Downtown housing. The closer you live to the grocery store, the more attractive the property — and soon developers will be wishing they’d built more units, which will fill up fast. At last, you can actually live Downtown without owning a car. Real city living. Amazing that planners took so long to make this project happen.

    • Jason February 24, 2014 at 11:31 am


      I agree with your points. However, “planners” do not make projects happen. The developers do. In my experience, planners more often than not just get in the way.


  2. […] By Ryan Dravitz […]

  3. chachafish February 23, 2014 at 10:09 am

    Thanks for the update. Can’t wait to walk to the grocery store. Any word yet on what is going to happen to the old fire house across the street?

    • John O. February 24, 2014 at 11:24 am

      Hose Co. No. 1 is the oldest fire station still standing in Denver and is listed as a protected Denver Landmark. There is no definitive plan for the site as of yet that I am aware of, but stabilization work has begun to ensure the fire station will survive as a part of any new development.

  4. Nathanael February 23, 2014 at 3:30 pm

    This has even more effect than one might imagine — this is a grocery store which is actually within walking distance of the train station (both “commuter rail” and “light rail”). It’s easier to carry groceries on a train than a bus. Expect to see people taking their groceries home by train….

    And Jim is right. Developers will be wishing they’d built even more housing.

    I do wonder about the truck routes to supply the grocery store. I-25 to 20th St to Chestnut to 19th, it looks like? Or maybe the distribution centers are closer than I think and it’ll run down a different route….

  5. PCVH February 23, 2014 at 4:01 pm

    Downtown definitely needs a supermarket in a location that’s easy to get to on foot. I’m not convinced the Elan site is that spot for most downtown residents. The best location for easy walking would be within one block of a 16th Street Mall shuttle stop.

    • Jim Nash February 24, 2014 at 11:58 am

      Hope we see a Downtown Trader Joe’s soon.

      • PCVH February 24, 2014 at 6:19 pm

        Now you’re talking! But not necessarily on the Mall. A Trader’s within a five minute walk of both light rail, bus, and train could pretty much print their own money. I’m thinking of the Grand Central Market in NYC: if I had 5 minutes before I had to be on the train I’d run in there and grab something before catching MetroNorth. That market was always packed.
        Wouldn’t it be nice….

    • Nick February 25, 2014 at 10:23 am

      I’m fairly certain they chose that parcel as it is the easiest to drive to from LoHI. This is sort of a hybrid grocery store. It will serve Downtown but they are definitely hedging at that location by serving the car crowd as well.

      There has been rumor of another grocery store on 17th behind Union Station (Whole Foods). That would definitely be more Downtown serving.

  6. Mark February 24, 2014 at 4:29 pm

    Plus, the location is about half a mile from many spots in the lower Highlands. This development should make living in the lower Highlands more desirable.

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