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 August 1, 1999

Reynolds buys VanVleet property for $1.5 million

Developer Bill Reynolds, head of Boulder-based W.W. Reynolds Cos., has closed on the purchase of VanVleet property at the northeast corner of Arapahoe Road and Foothills Parkway — just beyond city limits.

“That isn’t much of a story yet,” Reynolds said of the $1.5 million purchase. “Some day it will be.”

The interesting aside is that Reynolds had the 40-acre parcel under contract for about four years because of issues such as the county’s industrial zoning and the fact that the land is about two-thirds in the flood plain and floodway. There also are wetlands and “sensitive riparian areas that will never be developed,” Reynolds said.

“We’re just looking at all the options now,” he said. “It’s a special piece of ground. It will have to be treated properly.”

The property, just west of Ball Aerospace, has been in the VanVleet family since turn of the century, according to CB Richard Ellis broker Frank Kelley, who represented both sides — Reynolds and Wayne VanVleet — in the transaction.

“The VanVleet family was interested in working with only the most sensitive and highest quality developer for the property, and that was Bill Reynolds,” Kelley said. “It’s been through a lot of generations.”

He said at one point about five years ago the Women of the West Museum took a run at it. “I’ve worked with Wayne for a long time on this thing, 20 years,” Kelley said.

The University of Colorado purportedly had some interest in the property that never panned out, but Kelley would not verify that.

BIG SALE INC.: BankOne Colorado N.A. has sold its building at 1800 Broadway to Vail Commons Partnership LLC and G.B. Ventures LLP — Paul Eklund and Bill Reynolds — for $7.9 million.

The partnership is considering a future mixed commercial and residential development for the property — depending on what shakes out with the city’s plan to redo the residential growth management system (RGMS)

“The rules, the way they’re set up in the city now, we couldn’t do it or wouldn’t do it because of the (RGMS) allocation system,” Reynolds said. “It’s too uncertain whether we could get our allocations.

“The city (staff) is in the process of making recommendations (to city council) to change that so they would encourage this kind of project happening, and we couldn’t do it without some different rules.”

Regarding the possibility of what’s being called “inclusionary zoning” being adopted — by which a developer would include 20 percent affordable housing in a project or buy his or her way out of it — Reynolds said, “This would not be affordable housing.”

He added the site probably would not bear the density needed to include 20 percent affordable because of the 55-foot height limit.

“But if we could pay some kind of fee and the city would place it elsewhere then we could see,” Reynolds said, adding that other cities have adopted policies where the developer pays and the city buys affordable units elsewhere in the city or the developer builds affordable units elsewhere.

Either way, if Boulder really wants residential units downtown, it needs to realize that “that’s not where the affordable housing is going to be built,” Reynolds said, promising “it will be a big project even if we don’t do the mixed use.”

Representing BankOne in the sale of the 54,563-square-foot building on a 2.7-acre site was Lesle Superchi and John Miller of Trammell Crow Co.

BankOne will continue to operate at 1800 Broadway in a long-term lease-back.

SMALLER SALE: Boulder-based accountant Richard Blumenthal and a partner, David Brewster, planned to close July 30 on the sale of 4890 Riverbend Road. The two will buy the 6,300-square-foot office building for $899,000 from Riverbend Property Associates.

WISE SPACE: The Naropa Institute, soon to be known as Naropa University, has proposed a new multi-use building for its main campus at 2130 Arapahoe Ave. The school also has 20,000 square feet at 3285 30th St., of which almost 4,000 square feet is leased out and about 16,000 square feet is in use.

The new building, about 20,000 square feet, is expected to go before the planning commission in early October, said Dana Ming, project coordinator for the school.

“We are not anticipating any difficulties with them,” Ming said. “We have worked through all the issues that they came back to us with, and those all seem to be resolved.”

The school could break ground as early as mid-December; then the project would be finished in August 2000. Included with the new building is a renovation of the current library.

School leaders are working on a cost estimate and obtaining contractor bids. The school is refinancing as well as searching for donors to contribute to the new building fund. The new building will house student functions, admissions, registration, financial aid, the bursar’s office, academic departments as well as different staff offices, classrooms and conference rooms.

The architect is Denver Architecture (yes, based in Denver). The design is in keeping with the classical nature of the campus but with newer materials. The plan is to “integrate a sense of sustainability in the building” as well as to capitalize on passive solar, Ming said.

Naropa, which is celebrating 25 years this summer, has about 850 full-time students; a decade ago it had about 250 full-time students. “It’s pretty dramatic growth,” Ming said.

Naropa is famous nationwide for its writing and poetics program, but just to limit its fame to that is not quite accurate, Ming reports. It is more that the vision of Naropa has been to bring wisdom from around the world together in one place. Studies other than writing and poetics include theater and dance, arts, psychology, environmental studies and religious studies.

BORDERS? The Colorado Group’s Reg Lawson represented seller BMV Family Trust in the sales of 1622 to 1630 Pearl St. — about 17,500 feet of ground — to two LLCs formed by development partners J Nold Midyette and Don Rieder. The 1600 block closed July 6, Lawson said, for $1.875 million; it had been under contract for nine months. The current plan calls for a mixed office and retail project that could be home to Access Graphics and Boulder’s first Borders bookstore.

BIG FINANCE INC.: John Richert, principal of Terrix Financial Corp., has arranged a $1.6 million refinanced loan for the Sanitas Building, a 16,572-square-foot industrial property built in 1998 at 3125 Sterling Circle in Boulder. The loan is for 10 years at 7.999 percent with a 30-year amortization. The borrowers were developers Erich Bussian and Chris Hanson, both Boulder High School grads.

THE FAR EAST: Reg Lawson, representing developers Bussian and Hanson, has leased the balance of space, about 6,000 square feet, in the Sanitas Building at 3125 Sterling Circle to worldprints.com, which also will be absorbing some sublease space.

The total of the building is 16,572 square feet.

MORE REG: In other Lawson news, he recently got the listing for the 6,250-square-foot building at 1945 28th St. developed by La Jolla, Calif.-based Larry Robinson. Lawson says interest has been “substantial” but that it’s preferred one tenant take the whole building — several interested parties have wanted to take pieces. “The building really lends itself to a single user,” Lawson explains.

PLANNING CHIEF: Long-time city planner Peter Pollock has been named Boulder’s new planning director. He starts Aug. 23.

Pollock, who has been with the city for 18 years, was appointed to the post by City Manager Ron Secrist. He has been the city’s director of community planning since 1991.

Boulder reviewed more than 120 applicants for the job, which was been vacant since 1997 when Will Fleissig departed.

TEBO BUY: Boulder-based Tebo Partnership LLC, headed by developer Stephen Tebo, has purchased 10,200 square feet at 1590 Broadway for $550,000 from the American Cancer Society, Rocky Mountain Chapter.

CROSSROADS UPDATE: Brad Power, Boulder Urban Renewal Authority (BURA) executive director, reported to the BURA board of commissioners that The Macerich Co., owner of Crossroads Mall, is scheduling its “Boulder Crossroads” redevelopment project and has started “interior abatement efforts” in the space above the former Stage store, which will be the Macerich mall management office as well as the community meeting room.

The community meeting room will have outdoor roof access.

The initial demolition will be at the southeast corner of the mall building — the location of the new theater building. Demolition will continue in sequence to enable the phased construction of the south end of the mall.

The completion of the entire first phase is scheduled for August 2000.

The feasibility study for an interactive learning center at Boulder Crossroads is under way. The consultant, White Oak Associates of Marblehead, Mass., visited Boulder the week of June 28, when Power attended a session related to the location of the facility at Crossroads.

“The BURA and city funding that was committed to the project has been disbursed,” Power wrote to commissioners in his July 15 memo. “Over the next several weeks, the consultants will draft a concept development plan, which will then be subjected to a series of revisions based on additional input from local sources.”

Power notes that the Boulder Chamber of Commerce will study the feasibility of a large conference facility within the city.

“As you know, Macerich has indicated they are exploring the potential for a hotel/conference facility to be located at Crossroads as a future phase of the mall redevelopment project,” Power wrote. “The city manager will discuss potential city funding for a portion of the study with the city council within the next several weeks. BURA staff will monitor the progress of the chamber study and will provide status reports to the board. Macerich also is planning to monitor and participate in the study effort.”

WALKING ON THE ‘NET: Boulder’s Pedestrian Shops in July opened the expansion of its downtown shop. The new addition, which features local sandstone, boulders, steel and glass, was designed by architect Jim Vander Vorste, who in 1991 designed the redevelopment of the building at 1425 Pearl St. The expansion includes space for the retailer’s growing Internet business (www.comfortableshoes.com).

The Pedestrian Shop opened in the 1300 block of Pearl Street in 1972 as an Earth Shoe Store — the name changed seven years later — and moved in 1991 to its current location.

HOME REPAIR: The city of Boulder’s Department of Housing and Human Services has $110,000 in Home Repair Program funds available for low-interest loans to qualified Boulder homeowners. Homeowners who meet the guidelines can borrow up to $25,000 for needed home repairs.

The emphasis of the program is on code and safety repairs and energy conservation measures and does not cover cosmetic remodeling.

A household’s total income cannot exceed $33,450 for one person, $38,250 for two people, $43,000 for three or $47,800 for a family of four.

Information: Luther Green in the city’s Housing Division at (303) 441-3157.

CATS AND DOGS: The Humane Society of Boulder Valley, an independent non-profit, is seeking funding from the cities and towns that contract it for animal care and control services for a new $4.8 million facility to be constructed at the society’s current site, 2323 55th St. According to architectural evaluations, the current 27-year-old building is beyond repair.

The society plans to raise $3 million for construction of a 26,000-square-foot building through private donations, foundations and corporate gifts. The balance of $1.8 million is expected to come from the governments that use the society, including Boulder ($896,000), Broomfield ($172,000), Erie ($24,000), Lafayette ($173,000), Louisville ($111,000), Nederland ($24,000) and unincorporated Boulder County ($400,000). The amounts are based on the use from each area.

The society hopes to complete the project within the next two years.

More than 8,000 animals annually receive care from the Humane Society of Boulder Valley, and more than 44,000 people used its programs and services in 1998.

“We provide an open-door shelter that is one of a handful in the nation to accept every animal regardless of age, temperament or health and to place 100 percent of the adoptable animals in homes,´ said Jan McHugh, executive director.

CONTRACT: ReNove has been awarded the contract for the remodel of Cornerstone Church, 1190 S. Broadway. The commercial construction company has offices in Louisville and Boulder.

BOULDER COUNTY

CONTENTIOUS: Loveland-based Arkins Park Stone Corp. saw its request to expand the site of its 10-acre sandstone quarry about one-third of a mile north of the Lyons town limits tabled indefinitely by the Boulder County Planning Commission in July because its attorney was not present. The commission likely will take it up again next month, but it’s a contentious issue, reports staff planner Chris Toebe.

“We have a fair amount of neighborhood opposition to that one,” he explained.

Reportedly a neighbor complained to the state that the quarry was exceeding its stated boundaries of no more than 10 acres of land. The state found it to be true, and now the company has applied to incorporate the entire site — up to 56 acres.

VACATION: Valtec Investments LLC received a conditional recommendation from the planning commission to vacate part of an easement at 7161 and 7209 Valtec Court, the site of two buildings on two lots off East Arapahoe Road west of 75th Street. Next up: Valtec Investments will ask for a 1,290-square-foot addition.

MOUNTAIN SPACE: Boulder County commissioners in July approved a plan in which the county would buy to preserve as open space about 2,500 acres of land — mostly in the vicinity of Gold Hill — currently overseen by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM). Since 1986, BLM has planned to dispose of the public lands to other government agencies or to the private sector.

A June survey showed 81 percent of Boulder County residents who responded wanted the county to buy BLM land to preserve as open space rather than have it be open to development.

“I believe strongly that the people of Boulder County want to preserve as much open space land as possible,´ said Boulder County Commissioner Ron Stewart, who also serves as Parks and Open Space director.

BROOMFIELD

THIRD PARTY: Broomfield-based Colorado & Santa Fe Land Co. has expanded into third-party building services. The company offers general contracting services as well as direct construction and maintenance services in HVAC, roofing, electrical and grounds maintenance such as landscaping, snow removal and sweeping.

“We service over 17 million square feet of buildings for over 200 customers along the Front Range,” says President Jeff Deis.

ERIE

WONDERLAND: Boulder-based Wonderland Hill Development Co. plans a co-housing community of 25 to 30 homes on 20-plus acres adjacent to an 80-acre constructed wetlands and wildlife preserve. The site currently is part of the 120-acre Rainbaa Farm two miles west of I-25 straddling both sides of Colo. 52 and on the west side of Weld County Road 5 — about two miles north of the Erie Town Center and at what is planned to be the north edge of Erie when it is fully developed.

Planning, design and cost approvals would occur in 2000, with construction in 2001. Homes would likely be in the low $100,000 and up.

The farm has been operated as a sheep ranch by David and Nicole Yardley for the past eight years. Much of it consists of lowlands with a high water table.

The site is likely to be annexed into Erie.

LONGMONT

FRCC UPDATE: The Longmont City Council in July approved the annexation of what’s known as the Baker property at Main Street and Quail Road, which includes 225 acres of developable land currently on the market — for $30,000 an acre or $6.75 million — and 45 acres to be transferred in the future to the city for a Front Range Community College (FRCC) campus, among other public uses.

Now FRCC will continue working to procure funding for design work from the state or from a public-private financing deal.

“One way or another it will get done,´ said broker Tim Hill.

MAX RENEWAL: Maxtor Corp. has renewed its lease of 40,000 square feet in Longmont Technology Park I at 345 Francis St. in Longmont. Trammell Crow’s Dan Bess represented Longmont Technology Park I.

PROSPECTING: The Longmont Area Economic Council is talking to an Internet-related company with plans to hire 15 people that is looking for 10,000 to 15,000 square feet of Class-A office space. The average salary is $100,000. The council’s also in discussions with an industrial company looking for 400,000 square feet of existing space with 14-foot minimum ceilings and also with a drape and bedspread maker considering Arizona and Colorado.

TENANTS, TENANTS: Four more tenants have signed on at Meadowview Village at Airport and Nelson roads in Longmont: NEC Electronics, Ground Zero Engineering Group, Galaxy Video and Mortgage Development Co. The 58,000-square-foot retail and office development was constructed in 1998 and now is 70 percent occupied.

LYONS

HIGH-END: Coldwell Banker Colorado Landmark, Realtors has four lots — $325,000 to $600,000 apiece — under contract in Caribou Springs Ranch, a new high-end gated community at St. Vrain and U.S. 36 in Lyons.

“It’s exciting for us,” says Joel Ripmaster, president, “because it has taken a while.”

The company also is marketing three speculative homes in the subdivision — $1.85 million to $2.35 million apiece.

WESTMINSTER

TOP OFF: The Westin Westminster construction schedule is on time — top-off of the 14th floor was expected in late July, with the opening of the $80 million hotel scheduled for March 2000. The 369-room hotel and conference facility is a joint project between Inland Pacific LLC and the city of Westminster. Denver-based Hoffman Construction Colorado is the general contractor.

PROMENADE: Excel Legacy Corp. (AMEX:XLG) — in a joint-venture partnership with Entertainment Properties Trust (NYSE:EPR) — will develop the $50 million Westminster Promenade. Construction of the newest phase of the Westminster Promenade is scheduled to get under way in August, with completion slated for the first quarter of 2000.

Situated on a 42-acre site at the junction of U.S. 36 and 104th Avenue, Westminster Promenade will encompass up to 325,000 square feet of hotel, restaurant, retail and entertainment space. It is anchored by an existing 24-screen AMC theater owned by Excel Legacy.

The 5,100-seat theater was recently ranked as the sixth highest-grossing theater in North America — in film revenues — by Entertainment Data Inc. The theater’s 1999 attendance figures are estimated at about 2.4 million visitors.

NEW DIGS: Westminster is developing a master plan to build a new police/fire building near its city hall at 4800 W. 92nd Ave. The existing 31,000-square-foot facility at 8800 Sheridan Blvd. opened in 1979. According to a consultant’s report, it is too small and outdated.

The usable area of the site could accommodate a new facility of 60,000 square feet.

Developer Bill Reynolds, head of Boulder-based W.W. Reynolds Cos., has closed on the purchase of VanVleet property at the northeast corner of Arapahoe Road and Foothills Parkway — just beyond city limits.

“That isn’t much of a story yet,” Reynolds said of the $1.5 million purchase. “Some day it will be.”

The interesting aside is that Reynolds had the 40-acre parcel under contract for about four years because of issues such as the county’s industrial zoning and the fact that the land is about two-thirds in the flood plain and floodway. There…

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