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Archive of posts filed under the Retail category.

Lower Downtown: Z Block Update #1

In January 2014, we reported on Z Block, a new mixed-use development in Lower Downtown that would remove nearly a half block of ugly surface parking from the historic Windsor Dairy block. Z Block was proposed by McWhinney in cooperation with the brokerage team at Newmark Grubb Knight Frank and property owner Grand American.

The original Z Block concept included a new office building along the entire Wazee Street side of the block, and multifamily residential in a new building fronting a portion of the Blake Street side, with the two components connected by spanning over the alley and forming a T-shaped project site.

With this update, there are two major changes to the project. First, Denver-based Sage Hospitality, operators of the historic Oxford Hotel and the newly opened Crawford Hotel at Denver Union Station, have joined the development team. Consequently, the second major change: the residential component of the project has been dropped, a hotel component added, and the uses rearranged on the block.

The new eight-story Z Block Hotel will occupy the corner of 19th and Wazee and offer 170 rooms. The 6-story office component will now have an L-shaped footprint, fronting most of the Wazee side of the block and spanning across the alley to the Blake Street side.

We have a bunch of brand-new renderings to share with you, courtesy of the nice people at McWhinney, Dovetail Solutions, Shears Adkins Rockmore (designers of the office component) and JG Johnson Architects (designers of the hotel component):

The corner of 18th and Wazee showing the office component that extends for about two-thirds along the Wazee Street frontage:


A close-up of the center part of the Wazee side showing the main office entry:


The Z Block Hotel anchoring the corner of 19th and Wazee:


Closer view of the hotel at 19th and Wazee:


From the corner of 19th and Blake, the view of the hotel on the right and, on the left, the portion of the office space that spans across the alley to the Blake Street side:


View from 18th and Blake showing the office component in the center of the block and the alley side of the Wazee building:


Finally, a close-up of the offices facing Blake Street:


The project also includes 400 underground parking spaces and 30,000 square feet of retail and restaurant space.

In my opinion, this is a wise move by Sage Hospitality and McWhinney. With Sage already operating what are arguably two of Downtown Denver’s most prestigious boutique hotels in amazing historic structures with the Oxford and the Crawford, the addition of the Z Block Hotel gives Sage a third property—in this case a modern facility in a sleek new building—and over 360 rooms within three blocks of each other all between Union Station and Coors Field in the heart of Lower Downtown. Smart.

Z Block is scheduled to be completed by September 2016.

West Colfax: April 2014 Construction Update

If you happen to take a walk between Sloans Lake Park and Federal Boulevard, you’re going to see and hear a ton of construction going on. I’ve previously reported on three projects in the area, but thought I’d give you a mini tour of everything that’s going on in the neighborhood while updating you on those three projects. First the map:

Aerial with buildings

All of the parcels I’ve highlighted here are in some state of construction. The parcels outlined in red are mixed use developments that are underway: The St Anthony’s Hospital Redevelopment (#1) and Mile-High Vista (#5). The orange parcels are all townhome developments; thirteen projects averaging 6-8 units with. I’ll update you on the Framework project (#2) that I wrote about in an earlier post and show some pictures of the radical changes happening on 17th Ave (#3). Finally, there’s a bit of an unknown, the site at Federal and 16th avenue (#4) has recently been scraped in preparation for sale.

Project #1 – St Anthony’s Redevelopment (see my orignial post)

There currently isn’t much in the way of building happening at the old hospital site, but there’s a lot of behind-the-scenes preparation going on. All the buildings that are to be taken down have been demolished (minus an old maintenance building on 17th Avenue being used for a construction office) and the site is currently being regraded. Cameron Bertram of EFG, the owner’s representative, says that by mid-summer we should see utility work well underway and by fall the new city streets will be put in place. EFG currently has four of seven blocks under contract and is nearly ready to close on another. The Kuhlman Block Alliance will be developing the northeastern-most corner with a boutique hotel in the existing Kuhlman Building, restaurants, retail and apartments. Trammell Crow Residential will be developing two interior blocks with nearly 370 apartments. Finally, Littleton Capital Partners will be developing a retail anchor on the southern-most block facing Colfax. This block will contain a renovated 4-story office building, a retail pad, and a 12-screen Alamo Drafthouse Cinema as the anchor tenant. Here’s a rendering of the cinema block from Colfax and Raleigh Street taken from EFG’s website

2014-04-10_Alamo Drafthouse

Project #2 – Framework at Sloans Lake (see my original post)

Over at Framework, there is much work underway. The first phase is mostly framed and the developer has informed me that he will be breaking ground the second phase very soon as the first phase is already completely pre-sold. Here’s a shot of the first building (along 18th avenue).


The three-story buildings are strikingly noticeable among the primarily 1- and 2-story single family homes in the area, and given their location at the top of a small hill, can be seen rising up from the neighborhood from Sloans Lake Park two blocks away. This project was the first townhome development in the area, and has since spawned a flurry of construction on neighboring blocks; thirteen townhome projects are now underway in the immediate vicinity.

Project #3 – 17th Avenue

A radical change is occurring on the north side of 17th Avenue where five adjacent lots are in varying stages of construction by five different developers. What was once a 1- and 2-story single family street is rapidly getting an urban makeover.

2014-04-10_17th St Projects 2014-04-10_17thSt

Project #4 – A high profile site gets scraped.

On the triangular site overlooking the Federal Boulevard/Colfax interchange once stood a small institutional building. Recently, the owner scraped the building in order to better sell the property. The remainder of this 2+ acre site is covered with an asphalt parking lot, with spectacular views of Mile High Stadium, Downtown and Southeast Denver (not that the asphalt cares much). I personally hope someone snatched up this gem of a property and turns it into something worthy of this extremely prominent site. Here’s a panorama of the site taken from Grove Street.

2014-04-10_Federal Site

Project #5 – Mile High Vista (see my original post)

Last, but not least, is the Mile High Vista Project.  As you can see in the pictures below, the 7 story workforce housing component of the development has topped out and is being skinned and finished. Five stories of housing sit atop a two story podium of parking, resident amenities, and office space. The building is slated to receive a LEED Platinum rating, which is highly commendable for an affordable housing project.

2014-04-10_Mile High Vista 2 2014-04-10_Mile High Vista

In front of the apartment building (anchoring the corner of Colfax and Irving) is a two-story steel frame building that is to become a brand new 25,000 sq.ft. Denver Public Library branch. Construction of the branch had been delayed for some time due to some soil issues, but after a redesign of the foundation they are now making significant progress and hope to open next year.

I hope you enjoyed this little tour of the neighborhood; as you can see, it’s rife with construction activity, redevelopment and densification. Check it out and stay tuned.

New Cherry Creek Project: 1st and Steele

Zocalo Development has been bullish on Downtown Denver with recent developments such as Solera, 2020 Lawrence, and the still under-construction Cadence adding close to a thousand rental units. Now it’s time to look at their first project in Cherry Creek, which is also experiencing a significant building boom. Zocalo’s new apartment building will be located on the northeast corner of First Avenue and Steele Street; right across the street of the new 88 Steele Creek development. Currently the site is just a dirt lot with some torn up pavement. Here is a map with the site outlined.

This LEED-Gold apartment building will rise 12-stories and provide the Cherry Creek neighborhood with 185 rental units. Amenities will include their famous “Velo” bike room, a rooftop deck, fitness room, and ground floor retail. Here are a couple of renderings courtesy of their website.


Back in April, Zocalo received an approval from the city to change the zoning on this parcel to be able to build a 12-story building. This caused a slight neighborhood uprising concerning over-development, and traffic congestion issues. Zocalo responded by offering $80,000 on bikes, car sharing programs and other congestion relief measures in hopes of avoiding a lawsuit from the Cherry Creek North Neighborhood Association. Completion for this project is 2015 with the construction time frame still unknown.

New Lower Highland Project: Galvanize 2.0

Let’s stay on Platte Street to look at another new infill project! Galvanize, currently located in the Rocky Mountain Note building in the Golden Triangle neighborhood, has been very successful and will be expanding their operations into the Central Platte Valley. Similar to Shift Workspaces, Galvanize is a shared co-working center made for start-ups and small businesses. In these work-spaces, you would have the ability to rent a seat, station, or small office which is, once again, great for start-ups and newly established businesses. Now for the infill! Galvanize 2.0 will be situated on the southeast side of Platte between 16th and 17th. Here is a map with the site outlined.

Galvanize 2.0 will contain 60,000 square feet of co-working space rising 5-stories and since Platte Street is a retail corridor, the ground floor of Galvanize 2.0 will be dedicated to retail. Below are some conceptual renderings thanks to Open Studio | Architecture. These are not the final designs of the building but we can expect a modern glass and brick building.

Currently there is a 2-story brick building on the site which will be demolished to make way for Galvanize 2.0. I really wish they could have found a way to incorporate this neat little building into the development!

Construction is expected to start later this year with completion around Fall 2014.

Union Station: 20th and Chestnut Update #2

Since we last looked at the 20th and Chestnut project in the Hole-in-the-Ground Census, there isn’t much to report on as far as vertical progress goes. Having said that, there is something new and exciting on the site; a new tower crane! Here are some fairly recent pictures of it.


Let’s have another look at the site anyway! Here’s what it looked like as of Sunday afternoon. Most of the excavation is complete and foundation work for the underground parking structure has begun. Can you spot all five tower cranes in this picture?

I’m sure we will all love seeing this project rise as it will be providing the first full service grocery store on this side of Downtown Denver. Completion for this project is still about a year out however, that will come very quickly and by that time, the Union Station redevelopment project will be complete! Exciting!

New Lower Highland Project: Tejon 35

Continuing on with the Lower Highland construction madness, there is a new apartment project going up on West 35th Avenue and Tejon Street. This project is actually almost complete and it’s not very often we, here at DenverInfill, let a project this size slip through the cracks. But, as the saying goes, better late than never! Here is a map of where the project is located with the site outlined. You might have noticed that this project is kitty corner from the new LoHi Place project we announced a few days ago. That’s a lot of activity around this one intersection!

Tejon 35 is going to be a 4-story apartment building supplying the Lower Highland neighborhood with 29 rental units. This building will also have ground floor retail with outdoor seating to help activate this stretch of Tejon Street. All upper third floor units will have 19 foot ceilings with a loft area along with large balconies if you are facing east towards Downtown Denver. A 2,400 square foot amenity deck will be included which will also look over Downtown Denver. The facade is going to be comprised of, what we’ve been seeing a lot of lately, brick. Here are some renderings courtesy of the architect’s website.



The building has topped out with one floor of concrete and three floors of timber. Scaffolding has been put up all around the building which means we should start to see the facade go up very soon!


Tejon 35 is expected to be complete by late summer and will offer a mix of studio, one bedroom, and two bedroom units.

Union Station: 20th and Chestnut Update #1

Happy Monday! Let’s start off the week with some excellent news! There is no need to adjust your eyes, you are reading the title right. After many months of waiting and speculation, construction of the 20th and Chestnut project has finally commenced! As a refresher, I am re-posting the renderings from the last update we had on 20th and Chestnut (which was just over a year ago).


It may not look like much is happening but we are finally seeing some great signs of progress. The parking signs have been taken down, a construction fence now wraps around the site, a construction trailer is onsite, and a little earth moving has begun.


This is a key project for the Denver Union Station neighborhood because it is providing a full service grocery store to this side of downtown. This project will be a total of 5-stories with King Soopers occupying the ground floor.

New Infill Project: Midtown

Today we are going to be focusing on a new neighborhood development just north of Downtown Denver called Midtown. This isn’t going to be a typical infill post as it’s not downtown but it is worth taking a look at! Right around West 68th Avenue and Pecos Street there is a residential neighborhood being built from scratch. In the past, nothing has occupied the 184 acres of land except for a manufacturing and component testing facility. Since the facility’s shutdown in 2004, a ground water and environmental clean up started on the land and in 2007, the land was purchased with the vision of Midtown in mind. So how is this infill? Well, the land surrounding Midtown is already developed and this isn’t sprawling outside of what has already been established in the Denver metro area.

A couple of weeks ago, I met up with Tom Morton of Brookfield Residential and Perry Cadman of Brookfield Homes for an overview of this master planned development. I was able to peek inside some of the model homes and was also able to see their vision for Midtown.

Let’s start out with a couple of maps. On the left you will see how the land is going to be organized with the uses of each plot. On the right is an aerial view of the entire development, thanks to Norris Design. Also, as soon as the Gold Line commuter rail is complete, residences will be just up the street from the Pecos station.


Included in this development is a community center which will have the capacity to hold events, retail and a public garden. Some of the public garden land will be available to use in the future for mixed use development.

Phase 1 of this project is going to be mostly single family detached homes. On the maps above, you can see how many homes will occupy each block. This results in more land-efficient, alley-loaded, compact homes. The square footage for each house ranges from 1,797 to 2,228. Here is one example of many models that will be offered.

Interiors have both modern and contemporary finishes. Each home is envisioned with a sense of efficiency when it comes to lighting, energy, and space. This means there are many more windows, which are very energy efficient, customizable closets, kitchen and shelf spaces, an option for a finished basement, as well as a sealed house that doesn’t run up your heating and cooling costs. Let’s look at some interiors.



Prices will start from the high $200s and they have begun building the community. If you are seeking additional information, feel free to check out their website here.