650 17th Street Project Update #1

Back in September, we announced that a new tallest skyscraper might be coming to Downtown Denver. Now, the project, named 650 17th Street, seems to be taking the next step forward as the preliminary plans were filed with the city. These concept plans are to identify if there are any significant issues that will affect the design and feasibility of 650 17th Street. That being said, the images we are about to share do not reflect the final design of the project, rather they are more technical documents showing the height and breakdown of the building.

First, let’s start out with a bunch of perspective views from the ground level. All of the images below were created by Davis Partnership Architects, who are leading the design of 650 17th Street, and were pulled from the official documents submitted to the city.

These first four images show the podium from multiple angles. It appears that the parking deck will be covered completely.

Next up, let’s take a look at the tower again from the ground level, this time looking up. This gives a good example of how tall the tower is going to look from a pedestrian standpoint.

Lastly, here are four aerial perspectives from all four corners of the project.

650 17th Street is expected to rise 81-stories which puts the tower right at 1000 feet. Below are the elevations of the building along with some notes about the facade.

This will be a true mixed-use tower featuring both residential and hotel uses. We reported in our announcement post that there would be 248 condo residences, a boutique hotel, and 22,000 square feet of retail. However, that was projected for a 90-story tower and the official floor count is now 81; we are unsure of the final unit count at this moment.

Here is a breakdown of the tower, which is also depicted below:

Levels 1-2: Hotel and residential lobbies, retail. Levels 3-12: 778 parking spaces. Level 13: Hotel function level i.e conference rooms. Level 14: Hotel / Residential amenity deck. Level 15-24: Hotel rooms. Level 25-26: Mechanical. Level 27-52: Lower level condos. Level 53-54: Mechanical. Level 55-72: Upper level condos. Level 73-80: Penthouses. Level 81: Mechanical.

We currently have no information in regards to construction or if this tower is going to get built. Recently, there have been numerous articles stating that Greenwich Realty, the developer, did not close on the purchase of the land this tower would sit on. However, a developer does not have to have the parcel of land purchased to propose a project on it. We will continue with the project updates as soon as we receive more information.

By | 2018-03-11T22:04:48+00:00 March 8, 2018|Categories: Central Downtown, Infill, Lodging, Residential, Urban Design, Urbanism|Tags: |29 Comments


  1. Dave March 8, 2018 at 8:47 pm - Reply

    Please, please, please, please let this project happen!!!!

    • Alan March 9, 2018 at 8:56 am - Reply

      I’m 100% with you on this. Denver – in my opinion – is a city that would benefit significantly from a project like this both visually & economically. We need more for-purchase residential units downtown if we want to further develop and maintain a healthy and successful downtown environment / urban fabric. Most everything recently has been for-lease and mid-rise commercial which are both okay but not fully meeting Denver’s demand. Very few large-scale “high-rise” projects in the last several years for a city and metro area growing as fast as it is in both population and popularity. Fingers and toes crossed this happens soon.

  2. DenvertoSD March 8, 2018 at 10:02 pm - Reply

    they don’t even have land…

    • MatthewBaker March 9, 2018 at 9:02 am - Reply

      Right, here’s the article on this project being ‘scrapped’ https://www.denverpost.com/2018/02/26/mega-skyscraper-project-denver-no-land/

      • Randy March 9, 2018 at 12:58 pm - Reply

        Second paragraph: “But the developer’s attorney said the situation is a misunderstanding and his employer fully intends to buy the land and build the building.”

        Granted, the owner of the land claims the “deal is dead” later in the article.

        Time will tell…

  3. John R March 8, 2018 at 10:14 pm - Reply

    Almost 800 parking spaces, really? For only 250 condos or less, plus a downtown hotel. Ridiculous. Council needs to create parking maximums yesterday.

    • Dan March 8, 2018 at 10:35 pm - Reply

      Sure there are only 250 condos and some hotel component, but are there also parking spaces added to consider guests, i.e. the office workers who would have already been parking on this lot pre-construction, maybe parking for visitors who wish to visit for the restaurants that are supposedly going in, other retail guests, general downtown overflow parking, etc.

      Granted if I’m wrong and if the parking is dedicated SOLELY for the condo and hotel dwellers, then yes 800 spaces sounds excessive, however I sincerely doubt that they would dedicate 800 spaces if there wasn’t a legitimate demand for it.

      • John R March 9, 2018 at 6:58 am - Reply

        This building sits at the intersection of a dozen major rail and bus lines, in a downtown which provides for nearly every shopping need within walking distance, and through which it is easier to move by foot than car. More importantly, adding 700 more car to the downtown grid is guaranteed to cause even more congestion and pollution. It’s time we start minimizing the ability of developers to choke our streets and our air with cars. We tightly control every aspect of building but parking is some sacred cow that can’t be ratcheted down? I don’t buy it.

        • Dan March 9, 2018 at 7:44 am - Reply

          If the market demands parking, then developers will add it… I agree with you, it’d be nice to see a more pedestrian oriented city and metro area in general, but good luck trying to convince the rest of our residents to buy into this mentality. If our light rail was maybe 10 years ahead of where it is now, then this might have turned out differently. (personal opinion)

          I’m certainly not advocating for increased parking here: I work downtown and I would not be a fan of an additional 700 cars or so further cluttering the streets, especially during rush hour.

          • Sam March 9, 2018 at 8:21 am

            It’s not just “the market” either: it’s the fiscal backers of a project. If the underwriters feel that the parking ratio isn’t right for the site/area/city, that will make it harder to get financing…as if a clown show involving Buzz Geller and two relatively inexperienced developers from New York wasn’t enough risk already.

          • Chris A March 9, 2018 at 8:57 am

            I’m wondering what buildings they will have to tear down to add lanes of traffic to accommodate all the cars they keep building storage for. When will they expand Colfax, 17th, 15th, 18th, Market, California, Glenarm. We need more car lanes to accommodate all the cars.

  4. brendan March 9, 2018 at 8:30 am - Reply

    They failed to close on the land… so, first things first, right? https://www.denverpost.com/2018/02/26/mega-skyscraper-project-denver-no-land/

  5. sgsfghfg March 9, 2018 at 9:00 am - Reply

    I love this building, but (if it gets built) I have a sinking suspicion that the condos and penthouses will just be snapped up by foreign billionaires using American property to stash their money. The same thing is happening to a lot of the new upscale residential builds in NYC, London, and other major metros.

  6. Bobby Mucho March 9, 2018 at 9:07 am - Reply

    Can someone remind me why Denver doesn’t bury parking underground? It seems almost that it’s a requirement for parking to fill the podium?

    • Dave March 9, 2018 at 1:29 pm - Reply

      It’s cheaper to go up than go below.

  7. Ty March 9, 2018 at 10:29 am - Reply

    I thought this project fell through, and the owner of the land said something to the effect of now that the land is on people’s radar, they anticipate some sort of development on the land in the future… can you confirm?

  8. mike mcreynolds March 9, 2018 at 10:48 am - Reply

    Someone will undercut the deal on the land now that this developer has submitted plans. Another developer will plan a building that is smaller and able to recoup the investment funds faster and will pay more for the land than this developer is willing to……as exciting as I was for this it densest seem likely to happen.

  9. Richard March 9, 2018 at 11:19 am - Reply

    The lot is quite small and surrounded by 2 busy one-way streets plus a light rail line. I wonder how they can even stage the construction of such a large building using such a small footprint. It just seems unrealistic to me.

  10. Sam March 9, 2018 at 11:50 am - Reply

    Just remembered something. In a BusinessDen article concerning Greenwich’s failure to close on the land, Geller said the following:

    “[Geller] said he doesn’t see Greenwich ever building on his property, although “I could see them selling all the work they did to someone else.”

    Perhaps this plan submission gives Ursini & Co some more leverage when they try to unload this project on another master developer. Even though they’ve damaged their reputation and made the prospect of this tower as originally designed look a little improbable, I’d think that there is real value to a developer to have a comprehensive grasp of what the city will and won’t allow on a specific site, especially one without a height limit like this one.

  11. Ballpark resident March 9, 2018 at 8:03 pm - Reply

    I’m curios why this was blog was posted today when all the news sources indicated that the deal fell through days ago. It’s not happening. Would have been nice, though.

    • Ken Schroeppel March 10, 2018 at 7:40 am - Reply

      Because the fact that the developer submitted a formal concept plan to the city is still news, and as Ryan notes at the end of the post, the developer doesn’t need to own the land to submit a project to the city. In fact, it is quite common for developers to wait until they have received all of their approvals from the city before closing on the purchase of the land where the project would go. Who knows what will happen on this project, but we wanted to document the new information about the project submitted by the developer to the city.

  12. Bill March 10, 2018 at 12:22 pm - Reply

    Off subject request. Was noticing the Hilton Garden Inn from the Coloradan construction webcam and it looks close to topping out. Seems taller that the 12 stories advertised. Probably just the angle. Just looking for an update from someone in Denver. I live in Indiana and the only view of Denver I get is through this website and webcams. Thanks for your great website and amazing posts.

  13. Rob C March 13, 2018 at 11:12 am - Reply

    Good luck Denver! I don’t see a tower of this height coming to the city any time soon.

    • Dan March 13, 2018 at 3:29 pm - Reply


  14. mckillio March 14, 2018 at 1:47 pm - Reply

    How would the green roof amendment effect this and other skyscraper developments? Where would/could they put a green roof on here?

    • SPR8364 March 15, 2018 at 7:43 pm - Reply

      On the roof?

  15. Jeffrey March 16, 2018 at 8:58 am - Reply

    Interesting that no one has mentioned the potential impact of the steel tariffs on this. It’s gotta change their economics.

  16. Patrick March 16, 2018 at 12:59 pm - Reply

    If you’re going to build the tallest building in Denver (by leaps and bounds), where’s the rooftop bar? That would be THE spot for incredible views of the city and region.

    • Dan March 16, 2018 at 3:38 pm - Reply

      I could be wrong but I was under the impression that they would have something like that in one of the (smaller) side overhang/balcony things. Would be a largely wasted opportunity otherwise…

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