CU searches for new developer after Shea Properties checks out

Posted by puguh on Saturday, February 19, 2011

CU searches for new developer after Shea Properties checks out. The former University of Colorado Hospital campus is up for grabs now that the school has ended the contract it had with Shea Properties to develop the site.

The economic downturn prevented Shea from fulfilling its obligation to buy property for the first phase of its project by the July 31 deadline. The company renegotiated its contract with the university last summer but was still unable to start work on the project at East Ninth Avenue and Colorado Boulevard.

The opportunity to redevelop the site is a result of the Health Sciences Center's relocation to the Anschutz Medical Campus in Aurora in 2007.

The university now is searching for another developer to take over the project, said Jacque Montgomery, spokeswoman for CU.

It does not need to issue a request for proposals because the property already has the appropriate zoning for the general development plan conceived by Shea.

"We're aggressively marketing the property and pursuing any possible developers to develop the property," Montgomery said. "We just need to find new folks who might be interested in developing the site."

Since 2004, Shea has invested nearly $6 million in rezoning and master planning the 30-acre site. It worked closely with the Colorado Boulevard Healthcare District board, an all-volunteer 13-member community organization that guided the general development planning process.

"The zoning the board went through over the last two years has been put as an overlay on the property, and any change would require that it go back through the system," said Mary Nell Wolff, chairwoman of the district board. "From a neighborhood perspective, the protection is that the zoning runs with the property."

The plan re-establishes the street grid to incorporate the property into the surrounding neighborhoods. It includes up to 1,200 residential units, 150,000 square feet of retail space and about 500,000 square feet of office space.

"We believe the parcel will ultimately become the neighborhood asset that Shea envisioned in collaboration with the community," Shea's Peter Culshaw said in a statement.

The board will hold a meeting to discuss the changes from 4 to 6 p.m. March 3 at the Molly Blank Conference Center on the National Jewish Health campus.


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