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ARCHIVED  October 1, 1996

Fossil Creek Nursery buys new site on South College

FORT COLLINS – The landscape of southwest Fort Collins continues to change as growth pushes farther down College Avenue.One project well under way is a new headquarters for Fossil Creek Nursery, now at 4919 S. College Ave. The business’ new home will be about 20 blocks south of the current location.
Owned by Jack and Christine Feting since 1990, Fossil Creek Nursery sits on 10 acres of land leased from an investment group headed by Paul Heffron, a Boulder-based real estate broker.
“The land this nursery is on sold about eight years ago, and we’ve had a long-term lease,” Jack Feting said.
Now, the increasing potential for development along South College has prompted the landowners to intensify efforts to sell the property.
Feting said the nursery’s new, 15-acre location is owned, not leased. Rhys Christensen of Realtec Commercial Real Estate Services Inc. helped the Fetigs find their new location.
“We can control our destiny a little better,” Feting said.
The new nursery will include a larger store – 5,000 square feet, compared with the current 1,500 square feet – with an attached greenhouse and a separate building for the landscaping division. Additionally, there will be a new emphasis on water gardening and a large seminar area.
Feting said the new construction will be done in an attempt to maintain some of the ambiance of the old farm that used to operate on the site. The site was purchased from a group that plans a business park farther south on College Avenue.
The Fetigs also own Alpine Gardens in Greeley, a landscape contracting and maintenance business.
Heffron, the Boulder real estate broker, said there are no immediate plans for the property that Fossil Creek Nursery will vacate. One source said the asking price for the property is around $10 million. Heffron would say only that the owners may try to annex the property into the city.
Fossil Creek Nursery’s new site already is within the city limits.Lot database being preparedFORT COLLINS -A Colorado State University graduate student in marketing is compiling a database that bankers, developers, builders and real estate agents alike could use as a valuable tool.
Working in conjunction with The Group Inc., Laurie-Ann Mitchell since December has been tracking residential building lots from conceptual review all the way to issuance of a building permit.
The idea, she explained, is to get a handle on the ups and downs of the residential industry. Is it overbuilt? How might lot availability affect pricing? Just how many projects are under way in the Fort Collins area?
“We currently believe the housing market is overbuilt,” Mitchell said.
A complicated tool that requires a significant amount of time to research and update, the database ideally will eventually be combined with other market data and billed as the Northern Colorado Economic Database. It likely will be housed at CSU.
Mitchell, working under the supervision of CSU professor Dr. John Snyder, said subdivisions can be tricky to track.
For example, if a project is discussed in conceptual review to include a certain number of lots, it may actually go through the planning process with a different, revised number. Likewise, some projects go through the planning stage named something other than they were in conceptual review. It’s essential to ensure that the lots and projects are not counted twice.
“I’ve been cleaning it up a lot,” Mitchell said.
There have been previous attempts to maintain similar databases, including one by The Group. But the time required to keep up with the project makes it impractical to do in-house.
Mitchell said the database likely will continue to be maintained by graduate students.
The current version of the database tracks activity from January to mid-August. It lists 73 projects in the Fort Collins area, both single-family and multi-family. Figures show that a grand total of 11,403 units have been approved during that time period. Of those, 8,609 lots are vacant, and 2,220 housing permits have been issued. The remainder have had no activity as of yet.SBA loan gives bowling alley a liftLOVELAND – A familiar business in the heart of the city has been undergoing a facelift.
Bill Hill Jr., who purchased the Ram Lanes bowling alley in 1991, has spent the past five years working on upgrading the facility and bringing it up to modern standards.
Hill was able to combine his previous loans and lower his monthly payments with a $500,000 U.S. Small Business Administration guaranteed loan arranged by Tom Wilczynski of The Money Store Investment Corp.’s Fort Collins office.
“I want to bring Ram Lanes into the ’90s and make it a good, clean, safe place for families and bowlers of all ages,” Hill said. “I’ve reopened the lounge upstairs that had been closed since the 1970s, installed a Karaoke system in the downstairs lounge … and opened Billy Boys Subs & Pizza where the snack bar used to be.”
His long-term goal is to turn Ram Lanes into a “2000 bowling center” with new ball lifts and masking units, laser lighting and TV monitor scoring.
Located at 808 14th St. SW, Ram Lanes was built in 1964. When Hill took over the business, most of the equipment and furnishings had never been upgraded.
He also has installed new carpet, painted inside and out, and posted new signs. Additionally, Hill put in an automatic scoring system and purchased and improved the pinsetters the previous owner was leasing.Affordable housing under wayESTES PARK – Long a topic of discussion in Larimer County, affordable housing now is becoming more of a reality.
Work recently began on The Lone Tree Housing Village Apartments in Estes Park, a project that should provide units to families and individuals that fit into a specific tax bracket established by the Colorado Housing and Finance Authority.
That organization, along with the Colorado Division of Housing, Federal Home Loan Bank of Topeka, the Park National Bank of Estes Park and the town of Estes Park, the Simpson Housing Limited Partnership, and the Loveland Housing Development Corp. all made the project possible.
Another affordable-housing development is under way at the northeast corner of Harmony Road and Shields Street in Fort Collins.
It will provide 116 units, the first to be available in November. It is owned by the Affordable Housing Project of Fort Collins. Kaufman & Broad also is one of the partners and designed the project. Swinerton & Walberg Co. is the general contractor.Leasing activityMr. Neat’s Formalwear sold a 3,841-square-foot retail space at 217 Fourth St. East in Loveland for use as the Mary Constantine-Nelson Dance Studio. The studio has operated in downtown Loveland since 1983 and will begin operations at the new location Dec. 1. Larry Melton and Dan Eckles of Realtec Commercial Real Estate Services Inc. brokered the deal.
Nielsen’s Frozen Custard leased 944 square feet at The Shops at Westwood in Windsor. Kent Smith is opening a desert concept restaurant new to Northern Colorado. It will feature frozen custard deserts and deli sandwiches. The store will open this month. Rhys Christensen of Realtec handled the deal.
Medicine Bow Wines leased 1,721 square feet at 344 Foothills Parkway E., Suite 23, in Fort Collins. Pete Newman and David Keller are opening The Connoisseur, a fine wine and gift shop. The business features personalized labeling of wines for use as gifts. They plan to open this month. Rhys Christensen of Realtec handled the deal.
Moovies, the video-rental company that recently purchased Showtime USA, leased 7,500 square feet in Harmony Market. The company located in a new building by Bogaard Construction Inc. that bridges Steele’s Market and Builders Square. Peter Kast of Kast Real Estate Services Inc. and Dave Veldman of Veldman Morgan Commercial handled the deal.
Hewlett-Packard Co. has leased 18,300 square feet in the Greens at Horsetooth East. They will use the space for a division that trains clients and for software engineering design. The division, supported by 40 to 60 employees, is being moved off-site to make room for other expansions on the H-P Fort Collins campus.ÿ

FORT COLLINS – The landscape of southwest Fort Collins continues to change as growth pushes farther down College Avenue.One project well under way is a new headquarters for Fossil Creek Nursery, now at 4919 S. College Ave. The business’ new home will be about 20 blocks south of the current location.
Owned by Jack and Christine Feting since 1990, Fossil Creek Nursery sits on 10 acres of land leased from an investment group headed by Paul Heffron, a Boulder-based real estate broker.
“The land this nursery is on sold about eight years ago, and we’ve had a long-term lease,” Jack…

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