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TCR buys land at Sloans for 369 apartments

Highlights:

  • Trammell Crow Residential closes on land at Sloans.
  • TCR plans 369 units at former St. Anthony’s Hospital campus.
  • Sales price of $61 per square foot includes 709-unit parking garage.
Bridges will connect the Trammell Crow Residential buildings designed by JG Johnson Architects at Sloans.

Bridges will connect the Trammell Crow Residential buildings designed by JG Johnson Architects at Sloans.

Trammell Crow Residential, one of the nation’s largest apartment developers, has purchased 4.483 acres on the former St. Anthony’s Hospital campus across from Sloan’s Lake, where it plans to develop a 369-unit apartment community.

It marks the first land purchase at the former St. Anthony’s Hospital site, now called Sloans, which will be transformed into a residential, retail and office community.

The site purchased by TCR includes the existing 709-parking garage, which will provide parking for the apartments as well as future planned retail, including a proposed  Alamo Drafthouse Cinema by a different developer, Littleton Capital Partners.

Records show TCR paid $11.85 million or $60.69 per square foot. The two parcels it purchased are bordered by Stuart and Quitman streets and West 16th Avenue.

EnviroFinance Group bought the entire site 19.65 acre site for $10.4 million, or just under $12 per square foot, including a recent purchase of $750,000 for a parcel along West Colfax Avenue and Perry and Quitman streets, according to public records.

“We were the first movers, so I think the $61 per square foot price we paid is just a fantastic deal,” said Matthew Schildt, a managing partner of development for TCR.

John Winslow, a principal of Winslow Property Consultants, agreed.

He noted about six months ago a Texas developer paid $148.78 for the former Contemporary Learning Academy school site near Vallejo and West 27th Ave., about 2.5 miles northeast of the Sloans site.

“I consider those two sites very comparable,” said Winslow, who was not involved in either deals, but has been tracking the Denver real estate market for more than 30 years.

TCR put the Sloans land under contract about a year ago.

“We are super-excited about this,” Schildt said.

“First, obviously Sloan’s Lake is a huge recreational amenity for the area that has a history of being long under-utilized,” Schildt said.

“Second, we love the PUD (planned unit development) style aspect of the site, that is going to really bring a lot of strength to the entire property as well as providing great amenities for our residents.”

He is thrilled that future neighbors is likely going to be an Alamo Drafthouse Cinema.

“That is going to be a tremendous amenity for our residents,” Schildt said.

“We’re really looking forward to Alamo,” he said. “In addition, we will have ground-floor retail in our buildings, other retail is planned by the movie theater, and there is an existing 45,000-square-foot office building, on the site and the ground floor of it will be retail.”

The entire site is shaping up nicely, he said.

“EFG has just done a great job with bringing in developers. There is even a possibility of a 12-story condo tower on the site,” Schildt said.

“We also like for macro trends of people wanting to live in these urban, walkable areas that are close to light rail and downtown,” he added.

TCR’s  energy-efficient apartment buildings are being designed by JG Johnson Architects. The buildings will be five-stories tall at their highest point.

One of the apartment buildings will wrap around the existing parking garage built in 1994 for the hospital and the other building will not require separate parking because of the existing parking garage.

“We will use most of the parking spaces for our buildings, including a portion for our ground floor retail,” Schildt said.

Part of its deal requires it to put in a permanent easement in place that will provide parking and a separate entrance for the retail site that is to include the Alamo Drafthouse Cinema and other retailers.

“That was baked into our price,” Schildt said. “We could have paid more and then sold the parking we didn’t need to another developer. We accomplished the same thing with one transaction instead of two transactions.”

Dorit Makovsky Fischer and Hayden Hirschfeld of NAI Shames Makovsky represented EFG as the seller and TCR represented itself.

“I think this TCR sale is huge and it is exciting that they are basically going to stat construction right way,” with the first residents moving in about a year, said Makovsky Fisher.

“EFG has done an amazing job,” she said.

“Having a big hospital there had been such an impediment to development on this part of town,” Makovsky Fischer said. “Now, you have this huge opportunity on the West side that never existed before.”

The timing couldn’t be better for a new community to emerge on the West side, she said.

“When you look at everything that is happening to the north in West Highland, the area around the lake and all of the new development to the east, it really is fabulous,” Makovsky Fischer said.

Of the remaining parcels that EFG owns, three are under contract and two “are heavily being negotiated,” she said.

“Developers are seeing huge value at Sloans,” she said.

EFG is developing the land, but not any of the new developments.

“We feel privileged to be the master developer on such an important site in West Denver,” said Cameron Bertron, lead developer for EFG.

“TCR has been great to work with and the neighborhood response to their plans has been really positive.” Berton added..

Winslow said it may appear to some that EFG is making a windfall profit from the sale to TRC.

“After all, EFG is more than recouping what they paid for the whole site with one sale,” Winslow said. “But EFG also is paying a tremendous amount of money – many, many millions of dollars – to tear down the former hospital buildings, cleanup the site and put in all of the infrastructure. And when you look at comps, Trammell Crow Residential actually paid a very reasonable price for the land.”

Interested in buying a home in Sloan’s Lake? Please visit COhomefinder.com.

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