Own It Vista is a flex-commercial condo project in Lafayette. Courtesy Envision Constructors LLC

Development company finds its niche

LAFAYETTE — Barbara Clinard had been in the construction field for years, but it wasn’t until she connected with her biological father that she began developing projects on her own.

When she was in her 30s, Clinard learned the identity of her father: Jeff Skinner, who owns the Lafayette storage-space development company Own It Storage LLC.

“I grew up in Utah not knowing he was out there,” she said. 

At the time of her discovery, Clinard was overseas working on construction projects with a military contractor. When she returned to the states, she opted to come to Colorado in an effort to explore a relationship with her newfound dad. 

“I found out that he was a developer, and I’d been in construction my whole life,” Clinard said. “… We just really clicked and now we’re best friends. It’s really cool to find out that there’s this extension of yourself you didn’t know about, and you’ve got so much in common.”

As their relationship grew, the father and daughter duo decided to go into business together.

“He’d been getting a lot of calls from people wanting to run their business out of the storage spaces [built by Own It Storage] but they’re not zoned for it,” Clinard said. So the two decided to develop commercial real estate.

The result is Own It Vista, a flex-commercial condo project with 16 units ranging in size from 2,700 to 15,400 square feet on Horizon Avenue in Lafayette. 

While the project was rewarding, it wasn’t always smooth, Clinard said.

“We got all the way through the site plan and getting that approved, but we couldn’t find any money” to break ground, she said. “We were really struggling. We thought we were going to lose everything.”

Clinard was chatting with a developer friend who told her about Stephen Tebo, a local commercial real estate magnate who had invested in a prior project. 

“I just cold called his office,” Clinard said. “Literally three days later he was out looking at the land with us and looking at our plans. He liked the concept and over the next several months we hashed out a deal.”

With an infusion of cash, Clinard’s company Envision Constructors LLC was able to complete the office condo project this summer.

The property is zoned for light industrial uses and is home to an array of different businesses from a car accessory installer to an antique book restorer to a flooring company.

“You can’t live in the units and you can’t do retail, but you can almost do anything else,” Clinard said. 

As a female developer in a commercial real estate market that can often feel like an old boys club, Clinard said she goes out her way to try to raise up other women. 

“I try to hire women whenever I can. A few of my engineers were women, my drafter was a woman,” she said. “I try to support women-owned businesses, especially in this field.”

LAFAYETTE — Barbara Clinard had been in the construction field for years, but it wasn’t until she connected with her biological father that she began developing projects on her own.

When she was in her 30s, Clinard learned the identity of her father: Jeff Skinner, who owns the Lafayette storage-space development company Own It Storage LLC.

“I grew up in Utah not knowing he was out there,” she said. 

At the time of her discovery, Clinard was overseas working on construction projects with a military contractor. When she returned to the states, she opted to come to Colorado in an effort to explore a relationship with her newfound dad. 

“I found out that he was a developer, and I’d been in construction my whole life,” Clinard said. “… We just really clicked and now we’re best friends. It’s really cool to find out that there’s this extension of yourself you didn’t know about, and you’ve got so much in common.”

As their relationship grew, the father and daughter duo decided to go into business together.

“He’d been getting a lot of calls from people wanting to run their business out of the storage spaces [built by Own It Storage] but they’re not zoned for it,” Clinard said. So the two decided to develop commercial real estate.

The result is Own It Vista, a flex-commercial condo project with 16 units ranging in size from 2,700 to 15,400 square feet on Horizon Avenue in Lafayette. 

While the project was rewarding, it wasn’t always smooth, Clinard said.

“We got all the way…