Subaru dealership takes King GM site

LONGMONT — The owners of Valley Subaru and Valley Nissan in Longmont are moving the Subaru business to the former King GM site a few blocks to the west to accommodate growth.

WWW Properties LLC – an entity in which Valley owner Roger Weibel is involved with his brother Don – paid the King family $3.1 million in December for the site at 1800 Industrial Circle where that street intersects with Ken Pratt Boulevard.

The Industrial Circle site has been unoccupied since 2012. That’s when King Auto Group bought out Hajek Chevrolet and moved its GM and Buick dealership to the Hajek site at 1415 Vista View Drive east of town, forming King Chevrolet Buick GMC.

Roger Weibel said Valley’s expansion was needed to provide an appropriate level of customer service.
Valley will tear down the former King showroom on the south side of the nearly seven-acre site. The service building to the north will remain, with a roughly 8,800-square-foot addition built on to the southeast corner of that building that will include a new Subaru showroom. The old parts department will also be renovated. Valley Subaru will go from six and a half service bays that it has now to about 16 at its new site.

The move will allow Valley Nissan, meanwhile, to expand into Valley Subaru’s current digs. The Nissan dealership is at 1005 Ken Pratt Blvd., with Valley Subaru next door at 1045 Ken Pratt Blvd.
“We’re way overloaded here as far as ground space and mechanic stalls and parts area,” Weibel said. “And this is an opportunity for us to keep it fairly close for management.

“This way, Nissan benefits, Subaru benefits and the customer base will benefit.”

Tom Moore of Longmont-based Moore & Bishton Architects PC is leading design of the new facility, though no builder has been named yet. Weibel is working through the planning process with Subaru and the city right now, and said it could take a little over a year before construction is done and the move occurs.
Valley Nissan and Subaru combined employ about 70 people now. Weibel said that number will jump by about 20 when the new Subaru store opens. He declined to disclose revenue figures for the stores but said Valley Subaru sales eclipsed 1,000 new units in 2013 and Valley Nissan’s sales were similar.
The Weibel family has been a staple of Longmont’s car dealership scene since the 1970s when Weibel and his brother came to town to run St. Vrain Chrysler Dodge. Don is retired and out of the dealership business now. But Roger’s son Jay and daughter Leslie are involved.

In addition to Valley Subaru and Nissan, Weibel owns Loveland Ford as well as Longmont’s Prestige Chrysler Dodge Jeep and Ram at 200 Alpine St., having recently completed renovations to that dealership.

“We’re very active in the business,” Roger Weibel said. “We’re here every day. Boulder County, the city of Longmont, it’s been good to my family.”

BOULDER
17WALNUT BREAKS GROUND: Fort Collins-based Brinkman Construction Inc. has begun work on 17Walnut, a new 26-unit modern loft complex being built at the northeast corner of 17th and Walnut streets on the site of a former 7-Eleven and Buffalo Exchange thrift store.
The $6.2 million building is being developed by a group of investors led by Element Properties. It will include three stories and 41,943 square feet over an underground parking garage. The one, two and three-bedroom units will range in size from 600 to 1,400 square feet.
Element will lease and manage the building, while Studio Morgan Creek is the architect. Element director of development Kevin Knapp said rental rates have not yet been set. Construction is slated for completion in the first quarter of 2015.

SPEC WAREHOUSE RISING:  Steel framing is rising out of the ground for a speculative 32,000-square-foot office and warehouse building at 5025 Pearl Parkway.
Joe Poli, principal of Humphries Poli Architects in Denver, said there is no tenant slated for the building, yet. But he anticipates construction to be completed by late second quarter or early third quarter of this year.
Sand Construction Inc. of Denver is the builder on the project valued at $4.6 million, according to a building permit issued in October.
The building will include a small two-story office structure attached to a 40-foot tall warehouse. Poli said he expected the project’s Boulder-based ownership group, First Fidelity LLC, to begin marketing the building as it gets closer to completion.

CRESTONE TO PEARL WEST: Crestone Capital Advisors will be a tenant of the estimated $80 million PearlWest redevelopment at the former site of the Daily Camera at 1048 Pearl St.

Gibbons-White Inc. president Lynda Gibbons, who is handling the leasing for PearlWest, said Crestone will occupy just less than 30,000 square feet on the top floor of the Pearl Street side of the property.
PearlWest, being developed by Denver-based Nichols Partnership, is slated for a mix of office, retail and restaurant space, as well as a theater and parking structure.
Completion is targeted for the third quarter of 2015.

D&K MOVING: D&K Printing Inc. closed in December on the purchase of a 16,500-square-foot building at 5637 Arapahoe in Boulder – the former home of Product Architects Inc. – from D&B Ventures LLC for $1,643,400. D&K plans to move there in March.
D&K’s landlord at 2930 Pearl St. had informed the company of plans to sell the site a few years ago, D&K’s president Gary Bennett said. And last summer 2930 Pearl was purchased by a group of Denver developers. In conjunction with three surrounding properties purchased by the same group, the developers have proposed a large mixed-use project on the site that includes retail and office space as well as a 120-room hotel.
D&K, founded in 1964, had leased the spot on Pearl since 1980. Bennett and his wife have owned the company since 2001, though Bennett has worked there for 37 years, starting when he was just 15 years old.
Bennett said the purchase of the building, as well as a new press, came at a good time when the business could land favorable financing. D&K financed the purchases through Great Western Bank and the Small Business Administration.
“We’ll own (the building) for less than we used to be paying in rent,” Bennett said.

APARTMENT VACANCY: Apartment vacancy for the combined Boulder and Broomfield area declined year over year in the fourth quarter of 2013 even as the Denver metro area’s rate as a whole increased to a two-year high.
That’s according to figures released by the Colorado Division of Housing and the Apartment Association of Metro Denver.
Together, Boulder and Broomfield counties had 3.4 percent vacancy rate, down from 3.7 percent for the same period a year ago. The Denver metro area’s rate hit 5.2 percent, its highest since hitting 5.4 percent for the fourth quarter of 2011.
Rental rates in the metro area, however, kept rising. Average rent in Boulder and Broomfield counties climbed to $1,198.13 per month, up from $1,194.19 in the third quarter and $1,103.61 a year ago.

FIUS BUYS:  The owners of FIUS Distributors LLC recently closed on the purchase of 2125 32nd St. in Boulder to accommodate the company’s strong growth and provide space for a factory showroom.
Twenty 1 Twenty 5 LLC paid the Keneth C. Schneider Family Limited Partnership LLP close to $1.8 million for the 17,200-square-foot building. Becky Callan Gamble and Brit Banks of Dean Callan and Co. brokered the deal.
FIUS, which stands for Family Inada US, distributes Japanese-made Inada massage chairs in the United States as well as the Positive Posture line of recliners. Positive Posture LLC is a separate company from FIUS, but it operates under the same roof and has some ownership crossover.
President Cliff Levin said both FIUS and Positive Posture will move to the new building over the next month and occupy about 11,600 square feet. Construction supplier Fastenal has an existing lease on the remaining space and will remain there. FIUS and Positive posture lease about 3,500 square feet at 1750 55th St. now.

CALLAN DEALS: Becky Callan Gamble and Dryden Dunsmore of Dean Callan and Co. recently represented Industrial Land Leasing Corp. on a pair of building sales.
The 4,000-square-foot building at 3121 Longhorn Road was purchased for $673,200 by 3121 Longhorn Road LLC. Tim Shea of Pedal to Properties represented the buyer.
The 9,000-square-foot building at 5853 Rawhide Court, meanwhile, was purchased by McRawhide LLC. It is occupied by Sonoma Tilemakers. Chris Jensen of Vista Commercial represented the buyer.

BROOMFIELD
GREAT INDOORS SELLS: The same ownership group that bought most of FlatIron Marketplace in July closed recently on the purchase of the former Great Indoors store, helping pave the way for revitalization of a Broomfield shopping center that has fallen on hard times.
Provident Realty Advisors and The Kroenke Group, through an entity called FlatIron Marketplace 2013 LP, paid Sears Roebuck and Co. $5.2 million for the Great Indoors store and 4.8 acres on which it sits at 231 E. Flatiron Crossing Drive.
The 155,000-square-foot Great Indoors has been vacant since Sears shuttered the store in late 2012. It represents a large chunk of the shopping area that covers 45 acres and more than 400,000 square feet of restaurant and retail space east of the FlatIron Crossing mall.
FlatIron Marketplace 2013 LP purchased most of the shopping center from Ohio-based DDR Corp. in July for $20.3 million. According commercial real estate brokerage CBRE’s online listing for FlatIron Marketplace, nearly 143,000 square feet are available for lease at the shopping center, not counting the Great Indoors space.
Large stores like Great Indoors, Nordstrom Rack, Linens N Things and Office Depot have all closed in recent years.
Broomfield economic development director Bo Martinez said the city has been working on finding opportunities to revitalize FlatIron Marketplace during the past 12 months. He said the new owners don’t have any definitive plans yet, noting that revitalization could entail anything from retenanting the existing buildings to redeveloping the site into a higher-density mixed-use development.
“We’re going to work very closely with them on repositioning and redeveloping the FlatIron Marketplace area,” Martinez said.

SKYESTONE UNVEILED: Taylor Morrison Homes is hosting a grand opening Feb. 15 and 16 to showcase model homes for Skyestone, its new 55-and-over community.
Skyestone is located at 12091 Red Fox Way, off of Simms Street and West 108th Avenue.
Skyestone will offer eight single-family floor plans with the option of finished or unfinished basements. The homes will range in size from 1,584 to 2,858 square feet, and range in price from the low $300,000s to the $500,000s. A future community building will be completed in 2015.

LOUISVILLE
SAM’S CLUB SALE: A group of Boulder and Denver investors has purchased the former Sam’s Club building and property at 550 S. McCaslin Blvd. with an eye on finding a new retail use for the site.
A pair of entities – Centennial Valley Investment LLC and Seminole Land Holdings Inc. – paid Sam’s Club $3.65 million for the building and 13.2 acres on which it sits, according to county records.
The sale comes four years after Sam’s Club shuttered its Louisville store. The 127,000-square-foot building has been mostly dormant since.
Seminole Land Holdings is an entity formed by Thomas Garvin of Boulder. Garvin is the former owner of Thomas Garvin and Associates, a used office furniture dealer that he sold in the early 2000s. His son Travis Garvin, who owns a similar Boulder-based business called Low Cost Office Furniture, said that he would be leasing space in the Sam’s Club building in the short term.
Low Cost Office Furniture’s presence there will be temporary until a long-term tenant is found, according to Longmont economic development director Aaron DeJong. No redevelopment plans for the site have been filed with the city. DeJong said the ownership group is looking to fill the building, not scrape it and fully redevelop the site. He said the priority is on finding a single tenant rather than breaking up the building.

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


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