New Project: Colorado Center Phase 3

Every once in a while, there are projects just outside of our usual ‘DenverInfill territory’ that catch our attention and are worthy of a mention. In the past we covered projects such as Aria Denver, and One Observatory Park, which break the mold of their surroundings adding quality, urban development to the area.

Today, we are going to head on over to the Colorado Center, located on Colorado Boulevard and Buchtel. The Colorado Center is the southernmost dense pocket on the Colorado Boulevard corridor and has been ripe for more density ever since the light rail station opened just south of it. At an occupancy of 96%, the Colorado Center has a third phase now under construction.

I’ve had this post drafted since August, but it got buried with all of the crazy infill that’s been going on around Downtown Denver. As I visited this project a couple of weeks ago, I decided that it’s time to finally dig up this post and update you on what’s going on.

Let’s start off with an aerial with the site in question outlined. I zoomed out a little bit to show the pattern of density in this area. Colorado Boulevard is a fairly large and dense commercial corridor with low-density/single family homes surrounding it on both sides.

2015-08-24_ColoradoCenterSiteFixed

The third phase of this project will consist of a retail, residential and office component. Here is an overview rendering of the third phase, courtesy of Tryba Architects. We will break down the details of each project element below, with additional renderings.

2015-08-24_ColoradoCenterRendering-01

The residential and retail component will be on the south side of the project, closest to the transit station. These buildings will consist of 269 apartment units and 40,000 square feet of new retail space.

2015-08-24_ColoradoCenterRendering-04

Here is an additional rendering of the planned 15-story residential tower.

2015-08-24_ColoradoCenterRendering-03

The second 15-story tower will contain 210,000 square feet of class AA office space over a 7-story parking structure.

2015-08-24_ColoradoCenterRendering-02

So what is going on today? Back in August, there was an official groundbreaking ceremony for the office portion of this project. Since then, excavation, foundation, and the cores have been completed with the main structure starting to go up. Here are some photos from two weekends ago.

2016-03-27_ColoradoCenter-05 2016-03-27_ColoradoCenter-06

The cores for the office building have topped out at 15 stories, which gives us a good gauge on how tall this building is going to be. This will definitely add some significant height to this already dense area.

2016-03-27_ColoradoCenter-03 2016-03-27_ColoradoCenter-04

I’m sure we can all agree that this is much better than the surface parking lot that’s been on this site for many years!

2016-03-27_ColoradoCenter-02 2016-03-27_ColoradoCenter-01

This is only the beginning of the Colorado Center expansion. With office and residential components so close to the Colorado Boulevard light-rail station, this project is a great TOD win for Denver!

By | 2016-12-01T18:33:54+00:00 March 28, 2016|Categories: Infill, Office, Residential, Urban Design|Tags: |11 Comments

11 Comments

  1. mckillio March 28, 2016 at 11:47 am

    This is how I envision suburban sprawl moving forward in America, pockets of mixed use, walkable, self sustaining developments. Some like this will be retrofitted, others will be planned from the ground up.

  2. Bill March 28, 2016 at 12:15 pm

    The existing parking structure is a nightmare. I’m glad to see they are planning for parking capacity, but the inconvenience of getting larger vehicles in and out of parking structures is just going to push me to visit other theaters.

    • Tyler sall April 6, 2016 at 10:52 am

      why are you driving buses into parking garages?

  3. Mark March 28, 2016 at 3:48 pm

    I live in U Park and am very, very glad to see this area finally getting some dense infill. The most embarrassing parts of the Colorado Station are the self storage and car dealership immediately next door. Even with this new development, both of those will remain, which is just tragic. As soon as I win the lottery I’m buying both, demolishing them and building 20 story high rises.

    On a related note, the old Van Delen/Denver Christian school campus just got demolished and is being turned into some sort of multi-story development, but I can’t tell what kind. Could be anything from apartments to senior housing. It is just one block away from the Colorado Station and needs better pedestrian access across Evans.

    • Jerry G March 28, 2016 at 10:30 pm

      Those are going to be 3-story townhomes. The going there is E-MX-3. There is a listing on Denver’s ‘Site Development Plans’ map.

      • Mark March 29, 2016 at 10:40 am

        Thanks, just found it (http://www.denvergov.org/maps/map/sitedevelopmentplans)

        Looks like a decent use of the space, but 156 parking spaces for 79 units!!! That’s way, way too much parking for a development that is one block from a rail line and adjacent to 3 usable (but not great) bike corridors.

  4. Today’s Headlines | Streetsblog Denver March 29, 2016 at 9:00 am

    […] Development Near Colorado Station Supplants Surface Parking Lot (DenverInfill) […]

  5. Trucker Mark March 30, 2016 at 9:50 pm

    So Ken, what do you know about any proposal for the land on the south side of Evans between I-25 and Colorado Blvd?

    Doing some research for another project I came across a blog on one of the local neighborhood group’s websites from maybe 2009 that was opposed to some previous plan for that land due to the proposed vertical height of the proposed development.

    Since then I have heard nothing else about any such plan even on the City of Denver plan map page, and the buildings on the south side of Evans continue to deteriorate, with a substantial rise in felony property crime over the last two years increasingly evident too.

    I am worried that the crime rate and evident ongoing deterioration of many of those properties will drag down the value of new permitted and proposed properties on the north side of Evans.

    I also discovered recently that the US-DOT and FHWA have designated both Colorado Blvd south of I-25 and Evans Ave as critical National Highway System Primary Arterials (in 2012) and CDOT has also given them some freight corridor designation too, in both cases, with a stipulated mission to reduce roadway congestion in order to provide quality time-competitive freight access to businesses along such routes, a mission that likely conflicts with any new bicycle use of either corridor.

    According to the new Federal HNS standard Evans is substantially out of compliance with several design guidelines which call for obstruction-free clear zones, with the stated location for utility poles, fire hydrants, other fixed posts or structures, bus benches, sidewalks, and even off-street parking outside of a clear zone 7-10 feet in-width from the curb.

    This US-DOT/FHWA page has lots of information on the NHS Primary Arterial design standards. I understand a lot of it but I am not an engineer either.

    https://www.fhwa.dot.gov/programadmin/standards.cfm

    Just so that we all know that making any modifications to either Colorado or Evans through the Colorado Station and the adjacent study area now have to be approved by FHWA, CDOT, and DRCOG and abide by their guidelines for Primary Arterials that maintain or improve freight access and reduce congestion under the new NHS law.

    • Ken Schroeppel March 31, 2016 at 8:10 am

      Good questions. Unfortunately, I don’t know anything about the project location near Evans you’re referring to. Maybe another DenverInfill reader can answer this question. One good place to start would be with the city council office that covers this area.

      • Nash April 3, 2016 at 2:58 pm

        On Councilwoman Kendra Black’s monthly newsletter, under “Projects,” the notation on the demolition of several businesses on the SE corner of Evans and Colorado says, “There are no plans for development at this time.”

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