Colorado

Mayor Hancock announces 2017 Mayor’s Design Award Winners

We are honored to have Terraza del Sol as a featured project for this year’s Mayor’s Design Awards. Terraza del Sol features 42 energy efficient one, two and three-bedroom apartments priced affordably to residents earning 30% to 60% of Area Median Income, which is between $18,000 and $43,260 per year.  Monthly rents range from $389 to $1,081 per month, depending on the size of the unit.  The 71,000 square-foot building includes a fitness room, interior bike storage and a large outdoor terrace with gathering and play space for families. Other amenities include a community lounge, media room and in-unit washers and dryers. The project was completed in December 2016 and was fully leased in April 2017

Key to the overall approach is Mi Casa Resource Center, which opened its new organizational headquarters and Family Economic and Education Center on the main floor of the building. At nearly 20,000 square feet, the space will house Mi Casa and its core partners, providing entrepreneurial training, business counseling and microloans, career training, coaching and job search assistance, financial coaching; tax preparation; English as a Second Language programs; GED test preparation and computer literacy classes, and legal consultations.  Mi Casa hopes to double its impact from 2,500 participants to 5,000 in the next three years.

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Mayor Hancock announces 2017 Mayor’s Design Award Winners

Sixteen projects honored for excellence in architecture, exterior design, placemaking

 DENVER – Mayor Michael B. Hancock and Brad Buchanan, executive director of Denver Community Planning and Development, will honor 16 projects for excellence in architecture, design and place-making during the 2017 Mayor’s Design Awards ceremony tonight at 6 p.m. at the Chambers Grant Salon of the Ellie Caulkins Opera House.

View a slide show and download images and descriptions of the winning projects. >>
(Photos may be credited: “Courtesy of Denver Community Planning and Development.”)

“We are here to celebrate the projects that are getting it right. Whether they are big or small, buildings or art, homes or commercial buildings – these projects truly represent the Denver that we know and love,” Mayor Hancock said.

Since 2005, the awards have been presented to Denver homeowners, business owners, nonprofits, artists and others for their creative contributions to the public realm through innovative design. Winners can range from community placemaking projects to adaptive reuse of historic structures to single-family residences to major mixed-use downtown buildings. Each brings something special to Denver’s unique visual fabric and speaks to our collective commitment to building healthy, sustainable communities.

The awards ceremony will be held at 6 p.m. tonight at the Chambers Grant Salon of the Ellie Caulkins Opera House, Denver Performing Arts Complex (1400 Curtis Street). The event is free and open to the public; a reception will follow. For more information on the event and the awards, visit DenverGov.org/MDA.

The 2017 Mayor’s Design Award winners are:

  • Auraria Higher Education Center 1363 9th Street
  • The Deck, 651 16th Street
  • Ashley Union Station, 1850 Chestnut Place
  • Cobbler’s Corner, 2436 W. 44th Avenue
  • Cuba Cuba Café and Bar Patio Expansion, 1173 Delaware Street
  • Illegal Pete’s on Colfax and Race, 2001 E. Colfax Avenue
  • Alchemy Creative Workspace, 66 S. Logan Street
  • Shift Workspaces-Bannock, 1001 N. Bannock Street
  • Mid-Century House Restoration, 618 South Monroe Way
  • Beloved Community, 3722 Walnut Street
  • The Blue Trees, 700 14th Street
  • Terraza del Sol, 355 S. Grove Street
  • The Maven Hotel at Dairy Block, 1850 Wazee Street
  • Seed Building and Addition, 1500 Market Street
  • Avanti Food and Beverage, 3200 N. Pecos Street
  • The Triangle Building, 1550 Wewatta Street

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BUILDING COMMUNITY: Denver Community Planning and Development (CPD) is responsible for visionary city planning and ensuring safe, responsible, sustainable building. CPD regulates planning, zoning, development and maintenance of private property in Denver. We’re working hard to make Denver a great place to live, work and play! Visit DenverGov.org/CPD or follow us on Twitter at @DenverCPD.

Viewpoint: Denver voters seek action on affordable housing

Co-Written by Kimball Crangle and Melinda Pollack, Denver Business Journal, May 5, 2017

While Denver’s civic leadership focus turns to infrastructure, Denver voters continue to rate the affordable housing challenge as a top priority that they would like to see the city council and mayor more aggressively address. We believe there’s a path forward that yields a more inclusive, connected and affordable Denver for all, if we invest in both.

A recent poll of likely Denver voters also provides evidence of strong support for common sense laws to enhance the rights of renters, plus raise more civic capital to stem the affordability crisis. The lack of affordable housing is affecting virtually all households and is rapidly reshaping our city’s neighborhoods, racial composition, culture and distinctiveness. The poll reveals these ongoing concerns, and also suggests a path forward for addressing the issue in a more substantive way.

Terraza del Sol is an affordable housing project in west Denver.

Terraza del Sol is an affordable housing project in west Denver.

The poll, co-sponsored by Enterprise Community Partners and All In Denver, two nonprofit organizations that advocate for affordable housing and social equity, was conducted by a professional community relations firm in the first half of February and carries a margin of error of about 5 percent. The organizations conducted the poll in the aftermath of Denver’s effort last fall to create a new dedicated fund for affordable housing. Billed at the time as a “first step” to address the city’s affordable housing crisis, the new dedicated fund is estimated to create up to 600 affordable units per year in a city that is tens-of-thousands short. The poll was designed to gauge whether the issue remains high on voter’s minds, and whether there is an appetite to move more forcefully on the issue.

The poll revealed as least four major themes that Denver civic leaders should consider.

  1. There is broad support for the city’s housing fund that was created last fall.Seventy-four percent of Denver voters approve of the housing fund that was established by a new property tax and developer fees last fall. Notably, only 19 percent of Denver voters disapprove. Approval of the housing fund extends throughout the electorate, including fiscally conservative voters and high-income households. Created through a split vote and with organized opposition from the business community, Denver’s City Council members should be reaffirmed that their actions are viewed by constituents as both necessary and responsible.
  2. Affordable housing continues to be rated as one of the most important issues for the city to address. When asked to identify two issues that voters would most like to see the city council and mayor address, only education outranks the housing-related concerns of affordable housing, homelessness and cost of living. Transportation, a current focus of city policy and funding efforts, ranks a distant fifth.
  3. There is strong support for common sense policies to protect renters.Colorado ranks low nationally in tenant protections, which makes it more difficult for renters to qualify for and remain in affordable units. The Enterprise-All In Denver poll explored a variety of common sense protections that could level the playing field for tenants and be immediately enacted by the city. Tenant protections such as preventing landlords from profiting on application fees, requiring landlords to have good cause for evictions and allowing tenants to use all sources of income to qualify for housing all received support from more than three-quarters of survey respondents.
  4. There is evidence that voters would support bolder solutions to affordable housing. To test the appetite for supporting bolder approaches to affordable housing, the poll sought opinions on a potential bond issue that could create from $150 to $300 million in capital for a variety of initiatives. Similar bond issues have recently passed in several cities and counties along the West Coast where housing affordability issues are arguably more severe than Denver. Bonding the affordable housing package that was approved last fall, which would result in no increase in taxes, registered support from 75 percent of survey respondents. A more ambitious scenario that would create a slight increase in property tax, was supported by two-thirds of survey respondents.

The path forward to a bolder policy response to Denver’s affordable housing crisis is set by the city council’s action last fall, and is bolstered by the findings from the Enterprise-All In Denver affordable housing poll. In addition to establishing a dedicated fund, the city council authorized that a housing plan be developed to provide more comprehensive solutions. The plan, to be completed this year, could provide the blueprint for a bolder solution in 2018, including additional resources and stronger protections for lower income members of our communities.

We hope that our policymakers join us in continuing to keep affordable housing front and center in the civic conversation, much like the issue continues to be front and center in the minds of Denver voters.

Kimball Crangle is co-founder of All In Denver and Colorado market president for Gorman & Company, a development firm specializing in affordable housing. She can be reached at 303-887-2707 or kcrangle@gormanusa.com. Melinda Pollack, also a co-founder of All In Denver, is vice president and Denver market leader with Enterprise Community Partners, a national non-profit organization advancing affordable housing. She can be reached at 303-376-5405 or mpollack@enterprisecommunity.org.

TERRAZA DEL SOL, WESTOOD CATALYST

By John Rebchook, Denver Real Estate Watch, August 8, 2015

DENVER – A groundbreaking ceremony is scheduled for Tuesday for a $15 million, 42-unit apartment building, Terraza del Sol, which is viewed as a catalyst for Westwood, one of the poorest neighborhoods in Denver.

Gorman & Co., in its first Denver project, is developing Terraza del Sol on a 1.3 acre-site at 3116 W. Alameda Ave.

The three-story development will provide housing for those earning 30 percent to 60 percent of the area median income.

Monthly rents will range from $382 for a one-bedroom unit to $733 per month for three-bedroom units.

Qualifying renters would earn from $23,000 to $46,020 annually.

Mi Casa Resource Center, a Denver-based nonprofit that has served the community for four decades, will occupy the first floor, providing a range of educational and economic services.

“We specialize in complex public-private affordable housing partnerships in communities that are revitalizing in an equitable way,” said Kimball Crangle, Gorman’s Colorado Market President.

The City of Denver, Denver Urban Renewal Authority, Colorado Health Foundation, the Urban Land Institute and others have worked for years to bring new investment to the area

Almost a third of all of Denver’s substandard housing units are in Westwood, and 95 percent of the children in that south-central/west Denver neighborhood are eligible for free or reduced-price lunch.

Paul Lopez, the Denver City Councilman for Westwood, grew up in the neighborhood and knows what is it like to grow up poor with substandard housing.

“As a young man, my family constantly moved searching for decent, safe, and affordable housing,” Lopez said.

“Every time we moved, I had to change schools, make new friends, and the six of us would share a two-bedroom apartment,” Lopez said.

Terraza del Sol addresses social issues that have plagued Westwood, according to Lopez.

“By providing the units at Terraza del Sol, we are not only creating affordability, but sustainability in the lives of people in Westwood,” Lopez said.”

The 71,000-square-foot, energy-efficient buildings will embrace healthy living goals. Amenities will include a fitness room, interior bike storage, a large outdoor terrace with gathering and play space for families, a community lounge and media room.

Mi Casa Resource Center will open its new organizational headquarters and Family Economic and Education Center in almost 20,000 square feet in Terraza del Sol.

The space will house Mi Casa and its core partners, providing:

  • Entrepreneurial training;
  • Business counseling and micro-loans;
  • Career training, coaching and job search help;
  • Financial coaching;
  • Tax preparation;
  • English as a second language programs;
  • GED test preparation;
  • Computer literacy classes;
  • And legal consultations.

“We are excited to bring our comprehensive economic and educational services to this beautiful facility in Southwest Denver,” said Christine Márquez-Hudson, CEO and executive director of Mi Casa.

“This will enable Mi Casa to provide easier access and help more families achieve lasting economic stability,” Márquez-Hudson added.

Terraza del Sol is being financed through the Colorado Housing and Finance Authority, State of Colorado Department of Local Affairs, Denver Office of Economic Development, Denver Urban Renewal Authority, Citibank and Enterprise Community Partners, Inc.

Terraza del Sol was designed by Shopworks Architecture.The general contractor is Deneuve Construction Services. When complete, the property will be managed by the Ross Management Group.

Have a story idea or real estate tip? Contact John Rebchook at JRCHOOK@gmail.com. DenverRealEstateWatch.com is sponsored by 8z Real Estate. To read more articles by John Rebchook, subscribe to the Colorado Real Estate Journal.

NEW AFFORDABLE HOUSING GETS GOING IN DENVER’S WESTOOD NEIGHBORHOOD

Nonprofit Mi Casa Resource Center will also move its headquarters into the building

By Joe Vaccarelli, The Denver Post, August 11, 2015

DENVER – A new affordable housing development that will also house a prominent Denver nonprofit officially broke ground Tuesday in Denver’s Westwood neighborhood.

The $15 million Terraza del Sol project — developed by Gorman and Company — will bring 42 units of affordable housing to 3116 W. Alameda Ave. The ground floor will serve as the new organizational headquarters of the  Mi Casa Resource Center and include the organization’s Family Economic Education Center.

Mi Casa has served the Latino community in the Denver metro area for the past 40 years; the education center will offer services ranging from legal consultation and entrepreneurial training to GED test preparation and computer literacy classes.

“Residents are not just facing affordability, but access to good quality jobs and education and training,” Denver City Councilman Paul Lopez said. “This project brings both together.”

Mi Casa will sell its current headquarters at 360 Acoma St. The new building should be ready fall 2016.

“This is where we need to be,” Mi Casa CEO and executive director Christine Marquez-Hudson said. “This facility will serve not just families living overhead, but the entire area. I think this is a facility we envision being a catalyst for the community.”

The 42 units will provide energy-efficient one-, two- and three-bedroom apartments that are available to people earning between 30 and 60 percent of the area median income. That translates to between $23,000 and $46,020  per year. These 42 units are part of 337 affordable housing rentals that will be available in Westwood in the near future, according to Lopez.

Rents will range from $382 per month for a one-bedroom unit to $733 per month for three bedrooms. Other amenities at the development include a fitness room, indoor bike storage, media room, outdoor terrace and community room.

The project is financed by Colorado Housing and Finance Authority, State of Colorado Department of Local Affairs, Denver Office of Economic Development, Denver Urban Renewal Authority, Citibank and Enterprise Community Partners, Inc. The building was designed by Shopworks Architecture.

Joe Vaccarelli: 303-954-2396, jvaccarelli@denverpost.com or twitter.com/joe_vacc

http://www.denverpost.com/denver/ci_28622452/new-affordable-housing-gets-going-denvers-westwood-neighborhood?source=infinite

$15M APARTMENT PROJECT KICKS OFF IN WESTWOOD

By Burl Rolett, BusinessDen, August 12, 2015

A ground-breaking ceremony on Tuesday kicked off construction of a new apartment complex. Photo by Burl Rolett.

A ground-breaking ceremony on Tuesday kicked off construction of a new apartment complex. Photo by Burl Rolett.

DENVER – A new-to-Denver developer is breaking into the market with a $15 million apartment project aimed at low-income renters.

Gorman & Co. broke ground Tuesday on Terraza del Sol, a 42-unit affordable housing development at 3116 W. Alameda Ave. The project has been in the works for more than a year, Gorman’s Kimball Crangle said, and started to take shape after talks with Councilman Paul Lopez about rising housing costs in the Westwood area.

“This area has historically been one of the more affordable neighborhoods in Denver,” said Crangle, Gorman’s Colorado market president. “But even the neighborhoods that have long been affordable are starting to get more expensive.”

Plans for the $15 million development call for a mix of one-, two- and three-bedroom apartments set aside for renters making between 30 percent and 60 percent of the area median income. The project is expected to be finished by November 2016. Terraza del Sol will also house nonprofit Mi Casa, which will relocate its Baker headquarters to the development.

C:Revit14049 - Gorman Westwood14049 Grove St Apartments_steve

The 42 apartments are expected to be finished by next fall. Rendering courtesy of Gorman & Co.

Mi Casa, which offers employment services primarily to Latino families, will own a 20,000-square-foot office condo on the project’s first floor. The nonprofit’s condo will be the development’s only commercial space.

Mi Casa has been in Baker for about 13 years, but CEO Christine Marquez-Hudson said the neighborhood is “gentrifying rapidly.” Mi Casa’s headquarters at 360 Acoma St. is under contract to be sold. The deal will close, Marquez-Hudson said, when the nonprofit’s new office in Westwood is finished.

“This is really Mi Casa’s home,” she said. “This is where we need to be now and for the next 20 years and even more than that looking into the future.”

Terraza del Sol is Gorman & Co.’s first development project in Denver, Crangle said. The development firm is also working on a 70-unt affordable housing project at 71st Avenue and Federal Boulevard in Adams County.

Rooms at Terraza del Sol will rent for between $382 per month for one-bedroom units and $733 per month for the three-bedroom apartments, according to a company press release. The 71,000-square-foot building will include a fitness room, an outdoor terrace and a common lounge room.

Though the entire building will be limited to renters making less than 60 percent of the area median income, Crangle said 90 percent of the apartments will be set aside for renters at or below 50 percent.

For a single renter, 30 percent of the area median income for Denver County comes out to $16,800, according to figures released in March by the Colorado Housing and Finance Authority. A single person at 60 percent area median income would make $33,600. For a two-person household, those figures come out to $19,200 and $38,400.

The project is being financed by Citibank and Enterprise Community Partners, as well as the Denver Office of Economic Development, Colorado Housing and Finance Authority, Colorado Department of Local Affairs and the Denver Urban Renewal Authority.

The general contractor is Deneuve Construction Services, and Shopworks Architecture designed the project.

CHFA provides funds for Westwood project

By: Inside Real Estate News, October 2, 2014

Grove Street Apartments, a planned 42-affordable housing development in southwest Denver’s Westwood neighborhood, has been awarded almost $1 million in federal tax credits.

The Colorado Housing and Finance Authority $915,504 in Federal Low Income Housing Tax Credits for the development by Gorman & Co. on a 1.3-acre site at 3116 W. Alameda Ave.

The development is part of a comprehensive revitalization effort being implemented by city leaders in partnership with the Westwood community.

CHFA recently announced the final round of LIHTC allocation awards for 2014, which included Grove Street Apartments, a proposed mix-use development incorporating affordable housing and a nonprofit community services organization.

“By partnering with cities and Urban Renewal Authorities, CHFA can leverage our resources even further to help address the need for affordable housing, especially in communities like Westwood where revitalization has been prioritized,” said Cris White, CHFA executive director and CEO.

Westwood has been identified as a blighted Urban Renewal Area in need of reinvestment by the Denver Urban Renewal Authority.
In addition to the tax credits, the $14.3 million project will include a financial contribution from DURA.

“We are extremely pleased to partner with Gorman and Co. the Colorado Housing and Finance Authority, and the city and county of Denver by deploying DURA resources for the Grove Street Apartments,” said Tracy Huggins, DURA’s executive director.

“The redevelopment of this site, identified as a priority location for redevelopment in the 1990 Urban Renewal Plan, represents a significant milestone for the corridor,” Huggins continued.

DURA has had a long relationship with Westwood.

“For over 20 years, DURA has worked with individual residential and commercial property owners to reinvest in the Westwood area,” Huggins said.

CHFA’s allocation of federal LIHTC in round two will allow Grove Street Apartments to leverage $3.35 million in DURA funds that otherwise would not be available to support redevelopment in the area.

These resources are crucial, as 24 percent of Westwood’s families live below the poverty line and 95 percent of the children in Westwood are eligible for free or reduced-price lunch.

According to the U.S. Census, approximately 27 percent of all of Denver’s substandard housing units are in Westwood. Its rental housing stock also is old. Some 78 percent of renter-occupied housing in Westwood was built before 1980.

Additionally, Westwood’s affordable housing rentals are 99.8 percent occupied with very long wait lists, of up to 300 people.
“Grove Street Apartments is the kind of catalytic project we specialize in,” said Kimball Crangle, Colorado market president for Gorman & Co.

“We’ll provide high quality housing and services for working individuals and families who are low income earners, helping to strengthen the economic well-being of families and transforming the community over time,” Crangle added.

Crangle was previously a senior developer for Denver Housing Authority and led its flagship Mariposa redevelopment at West 10th Avenue and Osage Street.

The development of Grove Street Apartments coincides with coordinated efforts by City Councilman Paul López, Mayor Michael Hancock’s administration, and others to bring new investment into the Westwood neighborhood spanning housing, health care and food access needs.

“Mayor Hancock is focused on five critical strategies for Westwood revitalization through community investment—parks/open space, youth, fresh food, affordable housing, and commercial development,” said Paul Washington, executive director of the Denver Office of Economic Development.

“We are therefore so pleased to see Grove Street Apartments added to Denver’s spectrum of affordable and workforce housing, and particularly in Westwood, as one of the highest areas of concentrated poverty in the city,” Washington added.

“The Grove Street Apartments development is a catalyst project for Westwood,” said López, who represents the area.

“In addition to critically needed affordable housing, this mixed use development will bring job training opportunities to southwest Denver,” he said.

The construction of Grove Street Apartments is estimated to generate $15.85 million in economic impact and support 74 jobs. Ground breaking is expected in early fall of 2015 with an opening in fall of 2016.

Low Income Housing Tax Credits to Help Support New Affordable Housing in Westwood Neighborhood Revitalization

For Immediate Release
TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 30, 2014

contact:
Jerilynn Martinez, 303.297.7427
jmartinez@chfainfo.com

Hilarie Portell, 720.810.3906
hilarie@portellworks.com

Low Income Housing Tax Credits to Help Support New Affordable Housing in Westwood Neighborhood Revitalization

(DENVER) – A new affordable housing development in south west Denver’s Westwood neighborhood was awarded $915,504 in Federal Low Income Housing Tax Credits (LIHTC) by Colorado Housing and Finance Authority (CHFA). The development, Grove Street Apartments, is part of a comprehensive revitalization effort being implemented by City leaders in partnership with the Westwood community. CHFA recently announced the final round of LIHTC allocation awards for 2014, which included Grove Street Apartments, a proposed mix-use development incorporating affordable housing and a nonprofit community services organization.

“By partnering with Cities and Urban Renewal Authorities, CHFA can leverage our resources even further to help address the need for affordable housing, especially in communities like Westwood where revitalization has been prioritized,” said Cris White, CHFA executive director and CEO.

Grove Street Apartments, at 3116 West Alameda Avenue, being developed by Gorman & Company, will be a 1.3-acre, mixed-use development that will bring 42 units of much-needed affordable housing and services to the Westwood neighborhood, an Urban Renewal Area identified by the Denver Urban Renewal Authority (DURA) as blighted and in need of reinvestment. In addition to the tax credits, the $14.3 million project will include a financial contribution from DURA.

“We are extremely pleased to partner with Gorman and Company, the Colorado Housing and Finance Authority, and the City and County of Denver by deploying DURA resources for the Grove Street Apartments. The redevelopment of this site, identified as a priority location for redevelopment in the 1990 Urban Renewal Plan, represents a significant milestone for the corridor. For over 20 years, DURA has worked with individual residential and commercial property owners to reinvest in the Westwood area,” said Tracy Huggins, DURA’s executive director.

CHFA’s allocation of federal LIHTC in Round Two will allow Grove Street Apartments to leverage $3.35 million in DURA funds that otherwise would not be available to support redevelopment in the area. These resources will be critical as 24 percent of Westwood’s families live below the poverty line, and 95 percent of the children in Westwood are eligible for free or reduced-price lunch. According to the U.S. Census, approximately 27 percent of all of Denver’s substandard housing units are located in Westwood, and 78 percent of renter-occupied housing was built before 1980. Additionally, Westwood’s affordable housing rentals are 99.8 percent occupied with very long wait lists (up to 300 people).

“Grove Street Apartments is the kind of catalytic project we specialize in,” said Kimball Crangle, Colorado market president for Gorman & Company. “We’ll provide high quality housing and services for working individuals and families who are low income earners, helping to strengthen the economic well-being of families and transforming the community over time.” Crangle was previously a senior developer for Denver Housing Authority and led their flagship Mariposa redevelopment at 10th Avenue and Osage Street.

The development of Grove Street Apartments coincides with coordinated efforts by City Councilmember Paul López, Mayor Michael Hancock’s administration, and others to bring new investment into the Westwood neighborhood spanning housing, health care, and food access needs.

“Mayor Hancock is focused on five critical strategies for Westwood revitalization through community investment—parks/open space, youth, fresh food, affordable housing, and commercial development,” said Paul Washington, executive director of the Denver Office of Economic Development. “We are therefore so pleased to see Grove Street Apartments added to Denver’s spectrum of affordable and workforce housing, and particularly in Westwood, as one of the highest areas of concentrated poverty in the city.”

“The Grove Street Apartments development is a catalyst project for Westwood,” said City Councilman Paul López, who represents the area. “In addition to critically needed affordable housing, this mixed use development will bring job training opportunities to southwest Denver.”

The construction of Grove Street Apartments is estimated to generate $15,852,402 in economic impact and support 74 jobs. Ground breaking is expected in early fall of 2015 with an opening in fall of 2016.

About Colorado Housing and Finance Authority (CHFA)
CHFA finances the places where people live and work. Created in 1973 by the Colorado State Legislature, CHFA strengthens communities by making loans to low- and moderate- income homebuyers, affordable multifamily rental housing developers, and small and medium sized businesses. CHFA also provides education and technical assistance about affordable housing and economic development. CHFA is a self-sustaining public enterprise. CHFA issued bonds are not obligations of the state. For more information about CHFA please visit www.chfainfo.com. Contact our Denver office at 1.800.877.chfa (2432), or our Western Slope office at 1.800.877.8450.

About Gorman & Company, Inc.
Gorman & Company, Inc. specializes in revitalizing communities through innovative housing partnerships. As a trusted partner and respected industry leader since 1984, they specialize in downtown revitalization, the preservation of affordable housing, workforce housing and the adaptive reuse of significant historic buildings. Gorman & Company has offices in Denver, Co; Milwaukee & Madison, WI; Chicago, IL; Phoenix, AZ; and Miami, FL. Learn more at www.GormanUSA.com.

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Gorman & Company, Inc. Partners With Town Of Vail And Wright And Company To Build 112 Unit Deed-Restricted Employee Housing In Vail, Marking Vail’s Largest Employee Housing Project Ever

VAIL, Colo., Sept. 16, 2014 /PRNewswire

– Gorman & Company, Inc., an affordable housing development leader for over 35 years, has partnered with the Town of Vail and local developer Jen Wright and Wright and Company for the redevelopment and new-construction of Lion’s Ridge Apartment Homes on a 5.24-acre parcel on Vail’sNorth Frontage Road opposite Vail Mountain, which is the eastern half of the existing Timber Ridge employee housing complex. All costs of construction will be borne by the developer while the town will lease the underlying land to the developer with payments deferred up to 10 years. The town has invested $8Million in the parcel to insure the units remain deed restricted housing.

The groundbreaking, held Tuesday, September 16 at noon, was open to the community as a celebration of the Town’s housing milestone. Construction begins immediately.

“This is a phenomenal project for Gorman & Company, Inc. in that it involved complicities that the Town of Vail Councils and staff for many years, and the associated Town and community planners and financiers all solved. The result will be a beautiful housing project benefitting the community of Vail for the long-term,” said Gary Gorman, chief executive officer of Gorman and Company, Inc.

Lion’s Ridge Apartment Homes will be comprised of 112 deed-restricted units and a manager’s unit, will be constructed by Gorman General Contractors with construction management by the local firm of RA Nelson. The project, comprised of one and two bedroom units will include four, three-story tall buildings. The Town of Vail will continue to own and operate 95 rental units on the western side of the property.

“Lion’s Ridge Apartment Homes will be for the year-around employee in Vail who wants to live and work in Vail for the long-term,” said Jen Wright, principal of Wright and Company, the locally-based developer. “They will be ‘loft-like’ with galley kitchens, washer-dryers, storage and, generally-speaking, nice apartment homes which appeal to the Vail residents who are established here.”

Vail Mayor Andy Daly, echoed Wright and Gorman’s sentiments. “I couldn’t be more proud of this monumental accomplishment knowing that our investment on behalf of the Town of Vail taxpayers is fundamentally sound and will become part of this community’s legacy,” he said.

Construction to begin at Lion’s Ridge

By: Scott N. Miller, Vail Daily, September 15, 2014

VAIL — It’s been more than a decade since a big rental housing project was started in Vail. And, like anything in Vail, this project has carried plenty of controversy.

Town officials and developers Tuesday will hold a ground-breaking ceremony for the Lion’s Ridge apartments. That 113-unit project, on the eastern half of the 10-acre Timber Ridge property, will essentially replace the old units — which date to the early 1980s. But instead of units geared toward seasonal workers, these new apartments are aimed at year ‘round residents.

Every unit in the new apartments will have its own laundry equipment and furnace. The new apartments will also feature a small storage area for every bedroom.

At a Vail Town Council meeting in November of 2013, community development department director George Ruther noted that the plan for the new apartments is to present an in-Vail option to people who can live elsewhere.

That’s a scaled-down vision from several more ambitious plans floated over the years.

Those plans began percolating in the early years of the previous decade. Then, the original owner of Timber Ridge was ready to put the property on the open market, since federal tax incentives that kept the property in the “affordable” housing pool were set to expire.

Former Vail Mayor Rod Slifer recalled that town officials at the time believed the town wouldn’t be able to replace those 198 units of employee housing, and decided to buy the property.

“The council at the time felt it was important to keep it there for housing,” Slifer said.

Since then, there have been at least three proposals to replace the apartments with everything from rental housing to entry-level condos. All those proposals ran into various roadblocks, most having to do with the cost of building in Vail.

The most recent proposal — the one breaking ground Tuesday — is more modest. Developers Jen Wright and Gary Gorman brought the essentials of this plan to the Vail Town Council in 2013. Even after approval in November of 2013, more hurdles cropped up.

The project was supposed to break ground in May, with an eye toward the first tenants moving in in time for the 2015-16 ski season.

But ground breaking was delayed, due to what Wright said were difficulties with possible lenders. In late summer, Wright and Gorman asked to modify the original agreement, extending the terms of the ground lease for the apartments from 35 to 50 years, and adding an option for the developers to buy the property within the first decade.

That purchase price is about $5 million, roughly half of what the town paid for that part of the property.

Developers said both those changes were essential to get the project running. And plan supporters on the council have argued that contributing property, in whole or part, is standard practice in building workforce housing in mountain towns. However, the prospect of selling town land was a sticking point for some residents and a couple of council members.

Second-term council member Margaret Rogers first ran for office in 2007 pledging to get a Timber Ridge plan in place. She opposed the latest deal, both because of the potential cost to the town and the fact there aren’t more units being built.

Rogers and fellow council member Dale Bugby were in the minority on council, and cast the dissenting votes when the plan was put up for approval.

Wright praised Vail Mayor Andy Daly and Town Manager Stan Zemler for keeping the process going through the most recent hurdles.

“We couldn’t have gotten this done without the town,” Wright said.

Slifer believes the deal remains a good one for the town.

“It’s been a good investment,” he said. “It’s terribly important to preserve rental housing in town.”

Craig Cohn, a member of the Vail Local Housing Authority board, said he’s also eager to see new housing built.

“As a member of the (board), it doesn’t really matter what the deal was,” Cohn said. The important thing, he said, is building new housing for Vail’s front-line workers

“The town of Vail is under-housed at this price point,” Cohn said. “The sooner we get going the better.”

And, Wright said, “the town will end up with a nice project. It’s going to be a great place for people to live.”

Timber Ridge construction weeks away?

Scott N. Miller, Vail Daily, July 31, 2014

VAIL — After several years and a few false starts, the job of replacing the Timber Ridge apartments should start in the next few weeks.

Work was supposed to begin in May to replace the apartments on the eastern side of the 10-acre parcel. That work was delayed when a development team led by Gary Gorman and longtime valley resident Jen Wright ran into unexpected hurdles obtaining financing for the project.

Wright said the hang-up primarily involved the length of the land lease for the new apartments. The original agreement called for a 35-year lease. But, Wright said, lenders all asked for a longer lease term. The Vail Town Council on Tuesday will be asked to extend that lease out to 50 years, which will enable the developers to complete their financing agreements.

George Ruther, head of Vail’s Community Development Department, said the lease extension could be a good thing for both the town and the developers. The developers get the extra years lenders require, while the town will get another 15 years of lease payments on the property.

If council members approve the deal, Wright said construction work could start in the next few weeks.

GETTING READY

While building hasn’t yet begun, Wright’s group has been working to get ready to tear down the eight existing buildings that will make way for four new ones. That work right now is focused on removing asbestos from the 1970s-vintage buildings, a project that came as something of a surprise to everyone involved. That work should be finished in the next couple of weeks, Wright said.

When work does start, Wright said it will take about a year to get the first of the planned 113 units ready to rent. Wright said most should be ready to rent by the time the 2015-16 ski season begins, with the rest coming to market during the season.

YEAR-ROUND TENANTS

When the new apartments are ready to rent, they’ll come to market with year-round tenants in mind. The new apartments will have storage lockers for every unit, and every apartment will get its own laundry equipment.

Town Council member Greg Moffet said more room and better amenities is a matter of “respect for the people we have working for us.”

Town Council member Margaret Rogers opposed the current plan, asking instead for more units on the property. Now, though, she said she wants this plan executed as quickly as it can.

While the eastern half of the property is ready to be rebuilt — and renamed Lions Ridge — nearly 100 of the older Timber Ridge units remain. While there was talk several years ago of re-doing the entire site, Ruther said the western half of the complex will stay as it is for the foreseeable future.

Ruther said the town — which owns the property — is putting about $1.3 million this year into exterior and interior renovations on the western half of the property. No one puts that kind of money into 92 units unless they’re going to stay in the rental pool for a long time.

But, with Vail Resorts leasing about half the units and individuals renting the rest, Ruther said revenue from the western half of the property pays the town’s remaining debt on the entire parcel.

SHORT-TERM IMPACT

While construction will take more than 100 apartments out of Vail’s rental pool for the coming ski season, Ruther said he expects people will be able to find other housing in the valley.

“We knew there would be some short-term impact, but this is the only way we can re-develop the property,” Ruther said.
When construction does begin, it will mark the end of a long period of planning and several false starts. Moffet said one such plan was well underway when he ended his first stint on council in 2007. And Rogers said she made getting Timber Ridge re-done part of her first campaign for a council seat.

“That was six-and-a-half years ago now,” Rogers said. “This has been a long time coming.”