NexCore Closes on Golden Project Site

NexCore Group closed yesterday on the acquisition of two properties in Golden, Colo., clearing the way for Golden’s Gateway Station: an approximately $20 million mixed-use redevelopment that will transform a blighted corner of the city’s downtown core into an exciting hub of residential and commercial activity.
The first phase of Gateway Station, which is to be completed by October 2007, will include about 16,000 square feet of street-level retail and restaurant space and about 7,500 square feet second-floor for-sale office condominiums, topped by 34 luxury residences. The redevelopment will transform a stretch of Golden’s historic Washington Avenue that has been an eyesore since Hested’s Department Store vacated its building nearly three decades ago.
“The redevelopment of this site has been the No. 1 priority for downtown Golden for more than two decades,” says Mark Heller, Secretary and Executive Director of the Golden Urban Renewal Authority (GURA). “The site’s great potential to positively affect the already dynamic nature of the area has finally been unlocked by an especially creative public/private partnership among NexCore, the City of Golden, the Golden Urban Renewal Authority and the Golden Civic Foundation.” GURA will contribute $1.25 million for infrastructure improvements and the Civic Foundation is providing a $685,000 loan.
“A lot of other developers walked away from it,” NexCore President & CEO Greg Venn says of the Gateway Station site. “But, as someone who has lived in the area for about 15 years, I have a personal interest in preserving and enhancing the historic character of Golden’s downtown.” As a developer, Mr. Venn says he also sees the opportunity to make better use of the real estate through a high-quality 24/7 mixed-use redevelopment. City officials agree.
“NexCore’s redevelopment of the old Hested’s site is the best chance in decades to redevelop this part of downtown Golden,” says City Manager Mike Bestor. “The new residents, businesses and customers generated by this development will boost vitality at a time when downtown is under increasing competitive pressure from other communities that have attempted to duplicate Golden’s charm.”
“We are very pleased with NexCore’s willingness to thoughtfully incorporate suggestions made by dozens of citizens who weighed in on the proposal during multiple public hearings,” adds Mayor Chuck Baroch. “We believe this project will be a fitting addition to historic downtown Golden, keeping with the character of our town while increasing vitality along an entire city block.” The City Council gave its final approval to the project Nov. 10 by a unanimous vote.
The NexCore team’s success with other difficult projects, especially medical buildings has made them problem-solvers, Mr. Venn explains. Mixed-use projects like Gateway Station are a good fit because NexCore routinely deals with densely developed sites, limited parking and costly real estate. “We faced many of those same challenges with this project,” he says.