High-end hotel a possibility for 30th and Pearl

BOULDER – A high-end hotel and luxury senior living facility are two possible options being explored as part of a 400,000- to 500,000-square-foot mixed-use redevelopment project near the intersection of 30th and Pearl streets, according to one of the principals involved in purchasing the property.

Dan Otis of Denver-based Brickstone Partners said earlier this month that he and his partners hope to break ground in 12 to 16 months on a development that also would include a mix of office and retail. He said developers have also been in talks with a couple of single users about possible build-to-suit options for the site.

Pearl Place Associates LLC, formed by principals Brickstone and the Denver-based Forum Real Estate group, closed on three separate purchases: 2920 Pearl St., for $1.1 million; 2930 Pearl St., for $3.2 million; and 2095 and 2111 30th St., for $6.9 million. Peregrine Ridge LLC, led by Denver developer Richard Schierburg, also is an investor in the project.

Otis said the group has one final property, at 2121 30th St. under contract. Once that purchase closes, the contiguous properties that wrap around the Chase Bank at the southwest corner of 30th and Pearl will total 4.6 acres.

“We’ll flesh out exactly what the compilation of uses will be in the next couple of months,´ said Otis, who added that he expects the entitlement process with the city to take about a year. “Right now we’re in the market talking to a few tenants. There’s been quite a bit of interest. The site lends itself well to a lot of different uses and users.”

Because of all of the different owners and businesses involved, Otis said the purchase deal was a complex one that took about a year and a half in assembling all of the properties. He noted that broker Terry Kruegel, who represented Pearl Place Associates, was instrumental in pulling the pieces together.

The properties involved include a mix of businesses such as HB Woodsongs, which owned the 2920 Pearl property, and D&K Printing at 2930 Pearl, as well as a couple of retail centers on the 30th Street sites – all of which will be redeveloped. Otis said the properties include about 20 to 25 businesses in all, most of which are on short-term leases and will “be able to stay there and operate for a little while.”

Otis said zoning for the site allows for a maximum of 650,000 square feet of building space but that developers are aiming for less than that so they also can include a fair amount of green space and other community amenities.

Otis said he and his partners liked the central location for its proximity to the proposed transit village to the east, as well as Whole Foods across the street to the north and the Twenty Ninth Street retail district to the south.

“The location kind of speaks for itself. It’s a legacy asset and you just can’t replace it,” Otis said. “This is kind of the last large contiguous development parcel in the core of Boulder.”

Developers are working on the project with Denver-based Tryba Architects, whose projects range from the Colorado History Museum to Clayton Lane at Cherry Creek North.

Brickstone and Forum, owned by University of Colorado grad Darren Fisk, have been active in Boulder. Brickstone has had a hand in several student housing projects in Boulder in recent years, including the Gas Lamp Apartments at 910 28th St., The Lux at 855 Broadway and a new $40 million project in the works at 2885 E. Aurora Ave.

Fisk’s Forum was involved with the Two Nine North apartments near Twenty Ninth Street and a pair of projects on University Hill, including redevelopment of the Jones General Store site.

The property at 2095 and 2111 Pearl St. was purchased from 16th Street Offices LLC, with Becky Callan Gamble and Dryden Dunsmore of Dean Callan and Co. representing the seller. Woodsongs and 2930 Pearl St. LLC were represented by their attorneys in their sales to Pearl Place Associates.

HOUSEFAX LAUNCHES: A dot-com startup with dual headquarters – one in Boulder and one in Virginia – launched a service on July 2 that provides information on houses gathered from public records.

The online service, called Housefax, costs $59 per report and provides a history of a house through building permits, mortgage information, fire, flood, sinkhole and other residential property records from a variety of accredited sources. The service covers about 85 percent of homes in the United States.

Housefax.com LLC is led by founder and chief executive Eddy Lang in Haymarket, Virginia, and president Michael Abdy in Boulder.

The startup is backed financially by Boulder-based The Story Stock Exchange LLC, doing business as TeQuity Capital & Communications, led by Abdy, its president, and John Metzger, its chief executive. Metzger runs Metzger Associates, a public relations firm that primarily focuses on tech companies.

In 2012, Lang organized a team of technology, real estate and marketing professionals to build the database and buyer-beware reporting format designed to provide consumers with consolidated information.

Abdy said the timing is right for Housefax. Last year, Abdy wanted to make an offer on a house in Florida with his father, whose real estate career spans 40 years.

“I thought the house looked fine, but my dad’s sixth sense said, ‘This place has problems.’ He was right, and it showed me the need for a tool like Housefax. When I found that Eddy had the same idea, we joined forces.”


MORE ARISTA APARTMENTS: AMLI Residential, a builder of multifamily housing, has broken ground for an additional 168 luxury apartments at Arista in Broomfield. When completed, AMLI will have 526 units at Arista.

Construction will consist of seven three-story buildings on a five-acre parcel. The units will contain one or two bedrooms and range in size from 767 to 1,202 square feet.

At present, there are more than 600 residential units at Arista consisting of luxury apartments, townhomes, live/work lofts and two-story attached paired homes.

Arista, a 200-acre mixed-use project, includes parks, a hotel and a 1,500-space parking garage. Residential communities include KB Home, Arista Uptown Apartments, AMLI Residential and Century Communities.


WESTERN EXPANSION: Hard-drive maker Western Digital Corp. is in the process of expanding the size of its operation in Longmont including the addition of 18 jobs.

The company has leased an additional 18,000 square feet at 1951 S. Fordham St., where it shares a building with Xilinx Inc. and Marvell Semiconductor Inc. Western Digital will occupy 61,000 square feet.

Harold Teague, Western Digital’s vice president of the Longmont Design Center, said Tuesday that the company is moving in equipment now and hopes to be completely moved in by the end of July.

Western Digital’s operation in Longmont primarily is geared toward development of silicon architecture and support of that endeavor, and Teague said that focus would remain the same. Teague said the growth is attributable to a rapidly evolving storage industry and the fact that the added space will position the company well for taking advantage of the strong talent pool in the area when it comes to storage.


ALFALFA’S RECEIVES OK: Boulder developer Jim Loftus received final approval on July 2 from the Louisville City Council for the redevelopment of the vacant Safeway grocery store at 707 E. South Boulder Road.

The $31-million Center Court Village project will include a 28,000-square-foot Alfalfa’s Market with a 1,000-square-foot community room. That’s in addition to an 8,000-square-foot retail building and a 111-unit apartment complex. The 5.1-acre site also will include above-ground and underground parking.

The unanimous council vote brought to a close a two-year planning process during which Loftus’ original plan for the site – one that included nearly twice as many apartment units and less commercial space – was denied.

“It took a while to get it done,” Loftus said. “We’re anxious to get it going.”

A permit has been granted for demolition of the 54,000-square-foot Safeway, which closed in early 2010. Loftus said he expects demolition to begin by the end of July or early August. He expects to break ground on Alfalfa’s and the retail building by late September, with a targeted opening by late April. Construction on the three apartment buildings should begin by January, with the first opening by Thanksgiving 2014.

The redevelopment will account for about half of the commercial space at the site, which also includes a Walgreens, bank and shopping center that will all remain.

Joshua Lindenstein can be reached at 303-630-1943 or jlindenstein@bcbr.com.


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