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Archive of posts filed under the Office category.

Downtown Denver Non-Residential Projects: June 2016 Update

Yesterday we posted our Downtown Denver Residential Projects June 2016 Update, a semi-annual summary of new housing in the city’s urban core since the start of 2010. Today we take a look at all non-residential projects—office, hotel, civic, and other uses—that are completed, under construction, or proposed. Like our housing analysis, we use a 1.5-mile radius of the historic D&F tower at 16th and Arapahoe as our Downtown survey area for this summary. For our previous assessment, see our December 2015 Non-Residential Projects Update post.

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New 1144 Fifteenth office tower under construction in Downtown Denver, June 2016.

Click on the image to view our June 2016 Downtown Denver Non-Residential Projects exhibit or view/download a high-resolution PDF version (6 MB) formatted for printing at 11″ x 17″.

Office: The only office building completed during the past six months within our Downtown survey area was the 40,000 sf Industry Phase 3 project in River North, bringing the total square footage of office space completed since the start of 2010 to 1,933,000. However, two big projects started construction since our last update: the 430,000 sf 16 Chestnut building and the 210,000 sf Riverview at 1700 Platte project. With the other projects already in progress, that puts the total amount of new office space currently under construction in Downtown Denver at 2,053,000 sf. After all office projects currently underway are completed, about 4 million square feet of space—a significant amount in any real estate cycle—will be added to the Downtown market since 2010. In looking at the office projects still in the Proposed category, it’s likely that four of them totaling around 200,000 sf (1510 Market, 1615 Platte, Market Station, and SugarSquare) will break ground before the end of 2016.

Hotel: Downtown Denver’s hotel market continues to thrive in light of record-setting attendance at the Colorado Convention Center and the Mile High City’s emergence as an urban tourism destination in its own right. The number of new hotel rooms added to the Downtown market since 2010 stands at 1,776 and the completion of the 1,128 rooms currently under construction will put the number of hotel rooms in Downtown Denver over the 10,000 mark. Since our last update, three more hotel projects were announced (1701 Blake, 1600 Market, and 2525 16th Street) bringing the number of proposed new hotel rooms in the city center to 908.

Civic/Other: Compared to the office, hotel, and multi-family residential markets, the number of new projects falling under our Civic/Other category (uses such as cultural, educational, governmental, etc.) is fairly minimal. Currently, only two projects (Kirkland Museum and MSU Aerospace Engineering) are under construction, and only one project (CU Denver Wellness Center) is proposed and is scheduled to get underway this fall. But the few new entries in this category reflect not a lack of investment in this area but more the fact that we just finished a massive civic-projects building boom; just look at the Completed list.

Like our Multi-family Residential analysis, we added a Floor column to our exhibit this time. Here’s a bar chart showing the distribution of projects by the number of above-grade floors:

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Interestingly, the results are almost identical to our multi-family residential assessment. Half (33 of 66) of the projects are buildings 5 stories or less, about one quarter (16 projects) are in the 6-10 floor range, and around one quarter (17 projects) are buildings 11 floors or taller. Huh.

Just for fun, let’s look at all projects together—multi-family residential, office, hotel, and civic/other—to get an overall sense of the scale of new developments in the Downtown area since the start of the decade. The figures below are not just the merger of the data used to produce the bar chart above and in yesterday’s residential update. In order to avoid double-counting several mixed-use projects such as 16M, which includes both residential and office uses in one structure, I had to filter out the duplicates to come up with a list of unique buildings/projects. Also, as we did yesterday, townhome projects were eliminated from the residential data set. Anyway, here’s the frequency distribution table followed by a bar chart:

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So far, 117 different projects have been completed or are under construction within the Downtown area in the past few years. That’s a lot of “urban fabric repair” going on! Of those, 23 are buildings greater than 10 stories high. And while our baseline for tracking these project is January 2010, in reality, the overwhelming majority of these projects have occurred since 2012 when the Denver economy came roaring out of the recession.

That’s it for our June 2016 summaries! You can access all of our semi-annual summaries on one page using the “Development Summary” graphic link on the right sidebar.


Lower Downtown: 1510 Market Update #1

A few months ago, we reported on a new infill project—1510 Market— coming to the corner of 15th and Market next to the historic Rocky Mountain Seed Company building. The project has been working its way through the design review process at the Lower Downtown Design Review Board and will be back for another review in July. The project has already received the LDDRB’s approval for mass, form, and context, and now the final approvals remaining have to do with details such as ground-floor railings.

This rendering, courtesy of Tryba Architects, is brand new and is what will be submitted to the LDDRB in July:

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One interesting aspect of 1510 Market is that the building has virtually no brick as an exterior facade material. This reflects an enlightened interpretation of the design principles found within the LoDo district’s design standards and guidelines, which require traditional brick masonry for a new building’s street facade but does allow for the “constrained” use of other materials, such as steel and cast iron. In this case, 1510 Market’s facade will be primarily structural and ornamental steel, with brick used only on the small stairwell tower adjacent to the project’s historic neighbor on 15th Street. Yet, despite the lack of a masonry facade, the proposed building appears to fit nicely into its context and meets the other standards set forth in the LoDo design standards and guidelines: the building has a base, middle, and top, and the articulated patterns and rhythms of the facade are drawn upon and consistent with those of neighboring structures. In my opinion, this is a nice example of contemporary architecture existing harmoniously within a historic district.

1510 Market is technically an addition to the historic Seed Building at 1520 Market, and one of the Seed Building’s tenants, GoSpotCheck, will expand into and fill the entire addition, including the ground floor. Because it is common and often desirable for a restaurant to occupy the street level, the new structure has been designed to easily allow for that to occur in the future, with a grease trap and other restaurant infrastructure integrated into the ground-floor design. The patio along the Market Street sidewalk will be used by GoSpotCheck as an outdoor working and social space.

If all goes as planned, preliminary construction activities may be evident at the site in September.


Union Station: 16 Chestnut Update #4

Just a few days ago we reported that construction had begun on the 19-story 16 Chestnut project in Downtown Denver’s Union Station district. Monday, East West Partners and Starwood Capital Group announced they have sold the project to Invesco Real Estate. Despite the sale to Invesco, East West Partners will continue to guide the project as developer through the completion of construction.

Thanks to Chris at East West Partners and Alana from VOCA Public Relations, we’re happy to share this very high-resolution new rendering of the tower showing the DaVita logo on the side of the building. This is the view from approximately 16th and Little Raven looking southeast at the Millennium Bridge. The new tower under construction is on the left and DaVita’s existing headquarters building is on the right:

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By the way, while construction has been underway for only a few days, there’s already a sizable hole in the ground at the site!

2016-06-21 Edit: Here’s an additional high-resolution rendering courtesy of East West Partners. Thanks, Chris!

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Summer 2016: Central Denver Tower Crane Census

Happy first day of Summer readers! Back by popular demand, we are going to start the week and season off with a tower crane census. There was a lot of crane action going on over the weekend so this will be a fun census. All of the tower crane photos, with the exception of one, were taken on Saturday for an accurate count; even though the count is going to be tricky.

This census is for tower cranes only. The self erecting cranes (cranes without a ladder mast or cab) on smaller builds are not counted.

Why tricky? Let’s start out with tower crane number zero. As I got down to the Union Station neighborhood, workers were taking down the crane at Union Tower West. As much as I would love to count this, this crane has been completely taken down.

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Let’s move the count in a positive direction. One and Two belong to Pivot.

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Three and Four are for 1709 Chestnut. The second tower crane for this project wasn’t up on Saturday but it should be complete today.

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Tower crane number Five belongs to the 16th and Wewatta Hotel and Office Complex.

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The Confluence offers tower cranes Six and Seven. As a bonus, they were jumping the south tower crane over the weekend.

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Number Eight belongs to 28th and Vallejo and, since this is a Central Denver census, Alexan West Highlands brings number Nine to the table.

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I forgot the memory card for my other camera before I went up to take this photo so here is number Ten, belonging to Modera River North, in cell-phone-picture fashion.

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I said out loud, “No! What are you doing? I have a census to do…” as I saw what was going on at Dairy Block. A tower crane taking down another tower crane is not a sight we see everyday. Unfortunately, I can only count one for Dairy Block bringing the total up to Eleven.

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Twelve and Thirteen, belonging to 999 17th Street, are nicely tucked away in Central Downtown.

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1144 Fifteenth claims number Fifteen with Le Meridien / AC bringing the number up to Sixteen. If you look closely in the first photo, you can see the south tower crane for The Confluence continuing to jump itself.

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Seventeen belongs to the rare luffing jib over at SkyHouse. I’m sure number Eighteen, at Alexan Uptown, will be taken down very soon.

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Number Nineteen is working hard at Eviva Cherokee with Twenty and Twenty-One helping build the twin 30-story Country Club Towers.

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Last but not least, Twenty-Two stands tall above the Alexan Cherry Creek site. After a five hour tower-crane-spotting hike, I forgot to take a current picture of this one but trust me, it’s still there.

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As I was editing these photos last night, my wife nicely told me that she spotted one for Tennyson Place in Berkeley last month. After reviewing her phone picture footage, that brings our final total to Twenty-Three. Sorry, I don’t have a current photo of this one.

That’s a lot of tower cranes and about the peak number we are going to see this year. Our previous census, back in 2013, featured ten tower cranes with around three up in Cherry Creek at the time. 2016 has significantly more construction activity as the boom keeps on rolling!


Union Station: 16 Chestnut Update #3

Construction activities are underway at the 16 Chestnut site in Downtown Denver’s booming Union Station district.

In October 2015, East West Partners announced they were moving forward with their proposed 16 Chestnut office project, thanks to next-door neighbor DaVita agreeing to lease about two-thirds of the building for additional corporate headquarters space. Since then, the project has been going through the development review process with the city. This afternoon, East West Partners confirmed that the project is under construction. In our Update #2 post, we reported that East West Partners was aiming for construction to begin in July 2016; they beat their deadline by a few weeks!

The 19-story tower will fill the last undeveloped corner at the Millennium Bridge and will provide a significant sense of enclosure to RTD’s adjacent light rail and MallRide platforms. This is the perfect opportunity to share with you this lovely image from Ryan of the 16 Chestnut site from a few months ago:

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Today, workers started prepping the site and the adjacent streets for construction activities, and we have a hot-off-the-iPhone photo to prove it:

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In the photo above, in addition to the activities at the 16 Chestnut site, we can also see three other projects under construction: the 12- and 24-story 1709 Chestnut project on the opposite side of RTD’s Chestnut Pavilion, the 4-story 1975 18th Street project, and the three-tower 13-story Pivot project with its flagship Whole Foods on the ground floor.

The Union Station district’s build-out continues at a remarkable pace!


New Lower Highland Project: Platte Fifteen

Lower Highland’s booming Platte Street is set to receive another new infill development to add to its pedestrian-oriented mix of historic and contemporary buildings.

Platte Fifteen is a proposed five-story, 160,000 square foot project planned for the corner of 15th and Platte Street. Currently, about three-quarters of the one-acre site is covered by a surface parking lot, with the balance occupied by a 20,000 square foot building holding Vitamin Cottage Natural Grocers on the ground floor and Confluence Kayaks in the basement. Below is a Google Earth aerial showing the site location:

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The Platte Fifteen project is being developed by Crescent Real Estate and MDC Property Services with Legend Partners handling the retail leasing and Newmark Grubb Knight Frank managing the leasing of the office space. Denver-based OZ Architecture is designing the project. Thank you to everyone at OZ for providing the excellent images and assistance!

Platte Fifteen includes approximately 14,000 square feet of retail on the ground floor and around 135,000 square feet of office space on the upper four levels. Courtesy of OZ Architecture, let’s start with this overview rendering of the project showing the Platte Street (left) and 15th Street (right) corner:

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The ground-floor retail spaces and building entry along 15th Street at the corner are set back by almost 20 feet with a covered paseo to provide extra room for pedestrians:

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As this ground-floor diagram shows, the project features retail spaces facing both 15th and Platte streets. The development includes a few ground-level parking spaces plus two underground parking levels with a total of 236 automobile and 74 bicycle parking spaces. The vehicle entry is along Platte Street approximately where the current parking lot driveway is located:

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View of the building lobby:

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The four office levels will include about 10,000 square feet of outdoor space including terraces along Platte Street and a rooftop deck along 15th Street with great views of Downtown Denver:

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Here is a building stacking diagram for the 15th Street elevation:

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One very cool aspect of this project will be its use of Cross Laminated Timber. Platte Fifteen will be the first large-scale office building in Denver to be built using this construction technique that brings the warmth and aesthetics of large timber beams common in historic buildings into a modern open floor plan environment in a high-tech, sustainable way.

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Here’s one more overview rendering with Platte Street in the foreground and 15th Street on the right:

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Through a contextually scaled building with a modern glass and brick design and pedestrian-friendly ground-floor uses, Platte Fifteen will nicely anchor an important corner in Lower Highland and increase the vitality of what is already one of Downtown Denver’s most appealing and walkable mixed-use districts.

Construction should begin in 2017 with completion scheduled for late 2018.

2016-06-10 Edit: Gross building square footage revised to 160,000 SF per new information received from the developer.


Curtis Park-Five Points: 2560 Welton Street Update #2

Work has officially begun at 2560 Welton Street in the Curtis Park-Five Points neighborhood. This project will have a huge impact on the transit-connected Welton Corridor by adding 130 apartments, 15,300 square feet of office space, and 9,266 square feet of retail contained in a 8-story building. As a refresher, here two current renderings of 2560 Welton Street courtesy of Craine Architecture, the project’s architect.

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The site has been cleared, heavy construction equipment has been moved onto the lot, and excavation has commenced.

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This is very exciting news for the Welton Corridor as multiple projects are starting and wrapping up this year!


Central Downtown: 1144 Fifteenth Update #12

1144 Fifteenth Street, the largest and tallest project going up in Denver, is steadily rising as the core and parking structure start to make their way onto Downtown Denver’s skyline.

Here are two street level perspectives of the project. The two-story lobby is now prominent and the parking structure is currently up three stories. Once the garage tops out at 12-stories, the steel structure will start to go up ultimately topping out at 40-stories.

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I recently found a new perch to really capture how much of an impact 1144 Fifteenth is going to have. The Four Seasons (the building with the spire) is a great height reference as the 40-story office project will rise 37-feet higher than its neighbor.

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To wrap up, here is a bonus top down view of the project thanks to reader S. Autrey!

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The parking structure still has a bit to go and will take a significant amount of time. Hopefully by years end we will start to see the steel structure rise!


New River North Project: DriveTrain

A nearly 3-acre property between Brighton Boulevard and Arkins Court in Denver’s hot RiNo district is the site of a proposed mixed-use, pedestrian-oriented development called DriveTrain. Named in honor of former occupant Drive Train Industries and in a nod to River North’s industrial heritage, DriveTrain will include four buildings totaling over 350,000 square feet of space. To be developed by Tom and Brooke Gordon, the DriveTrain parcel is outlined on the Google Earth aerial below:

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(As discussed in our previous post, an adjacent parcel across 33rd Street will accommodate another component of Tom and Brooke Gordon’s vision for this area: River Row Homes at DriveTrain.)

The designer of the DriveTrain site and the project’s four buildings is RiNo-based OZ Architecture. Thanks to the good people over at OZ, we are pleased to present the DriveTrain site plan and architectural rendering below, as well as additional details about the DriveTrain concept and program:

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Overall, DriveTrain will include:

  • Approximately 220 residential units spread across three of the four buildings, offering a mix of for-sale condominiums ranging in size from big penthouses to micro-units, as well as affordable rental units targeted to artists that feature studio space on the lower level with living space above.
  • A 120-room boutique hotel
  • Incubator office space designed for creative companies seeking a collaborative working environment
  • Restaurant and retail spaces on the ground floors of all four buildings
  • A central landscaped courtyard for outdoor amenities and restaurant patio seating

DriveTrain’s site contains four internal parcels, as shown on the site plan above:

  • Parcel B: Condominiums in a 65,000 square foot, 6-story building overlooking Arkins Court and the South Platte River
  • Parcel C: A mix of uses in the development’s largest building at around 135,000 square feet in a 6-story structure facing 32nd Street
  • Parcel D: The boutique hotel in a 9-story, 100,000 square foot building facing Brighton Boulevard
  • Parcel E: The artist’s units in an 8-story building containing around 80,000 square feet overlooking 33rd Street

The view from 33rd and Arkins Court looking south toward Downtown Denver:

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Parking at DriveTrain will be located underground and will be available to not only tenants and residents of DriveTrain, but to the general public as well, providing access to the new River North Park and the neighborhood’s other amenities. DriveTrain will also be a 10-minute walk from the 38th and Blake station on the A Line.

Groundbreaking for DriveTrain is expected to occur in early 2017 with the project’s four buildings completed and open by late 2018.