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Prospector Place in the News

ARES Designs Mixed-Use Bldgs. For Downtown Golden Sites

by Jill Jamieson-Nichols, Colorado Real Estate Journal

The view from what will become Prospector Plaza.

The view from what will become Prospector Plaza.

A pair of surface parking lots in downtown Golden are targeted for mixed-use development.

The Golden Urban Renewal Authority is negotiating with developer Ardex Real Estate Services LLC to design and build the buildings, which would include a mix of office and retail space, apartments and two-story live/work suites. Located on Jackson Street between 12th and 13th streets, the properties would bookend the Gateway Station parking garage.

GURA has envisioned the redevelopments for years, issuing requests for proposals, but the recession and continued weak economy scuttled its plans. “With several years of sustained growth and extremely limited supplies of new, high-quality commercial space downtown, GURA feels the time is right to try again,” said Mark Heller, the urban renewal authority’s executive director.

Heller said the authority selected Lakewood-based ARES because of its “knowledge of the Golden community, its experience in building high quality and sustainable structures, and its ability to finance and deliver a timely product that contributes to downtown Golden’s continued vitality with a minimum of public subsidy.” 

“GURA is confident that ARES’ ability to build high quality projects in very constrained spaces, such as Golden’s downtown, will result in much-needed commercial space with relatively little disruption.The new commercial and public offerings will create space for Golden’s businesses to grow and for new businesses to relocate or launch here,” Heller said.

The two developments would total approximately 70,000 square feet, with development split fairly evenly between the two lots, which total 7,828 and 9,396 sf. The buildings would be three to four stories and offer up to 25,000 sf of contiguous office space and retail up to 9,000 sf. One- and two-bedroom apartments, along with two-story live/work units, would round out the mix. Parking would be provided under the buildings and in the adjacent parking structure.

The entire project will be designed and built using sustainable methods and materials , meeting a minimum of LEED Silver and Golden’s “rigorous” sustainability requirements , according to Zach Winters of ARES.

ARES hopes to break ground this year, delivering the buildings in mid- to late 2014. Several spaces already have been reserved, including an office for ARES and affiliate Colcon Development LLC’s new headquarters, and Winters said he expects both buildings will be fully leased prior to construction, based on interest already received, he said.

ARES and Colcon Developent were selected from several local real estate companies and developers who responded to GURA’s request for proposals to develop the sites. The companies’ structure puts architecture, construction management, marketing and other development disciplines under one roof, helping streamline the process and deliver a quality development to the community, ARES said.