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Glendale resuscitates dormant plans for giant entertainment complex

August 09,2017 09:15

An ambitious plan for a large entertainment complex in Glendale, which has been beset by major setbacks during the past few years, got new life Tuesday night when city leaders voted 6-0 to start negotiations with a Dallas-based developer to build the ...


An ambitious plan for a large entertainment complex in Glendale, which has been beset by major setbacks during the past few years, got new life Tuesday night when city leaders voted 6-0 to start negotiations with a Dallas-based developer to build the project.
Glendale 180, a $175 million project that could feature 25 bars and restaurants where adults could walk around carrying to-go alcoholic refreshments on the banks of Cherry Creek, has been a centerpiece of Glendale’s economic development plans for nearly a decade.
A previous developer the city teamed up with to build Glendale 180 — Wulfe & Co. — backed out in late 2015, and little happened with the project in the intervening 18 months.
On Tuesday night, the City Council approved a resolution that authorizes Glendale to initiate talks with Lincoln Property Company for an exclusive deal to build the complex, which could have as much as 200,000 square feet of shops, restaurants and bars — and a hotel — on 12 acres of city-owned land at the southeast corner of Virginia Avenue and Colorado Boulevard.
Lincoln has built similar projects in Texas, Nevada and North Carolina, and Glendale deputy city manager Chuck Line said the company is clear about what the city wants to do at the site.
“Entertainment-based projects are being looked at more as the problems in the retail sector have increased,” Line said. “Entertainment — that’s one of the things that Amazon can’t compete on.”
Tuesday’s resolution gives the city and Lincoln 120 days to hammer out a development agreement, after which Lincoln would present a specific plan for how Glendale 180 would take shape. Line said the city will vet those plans carefully to ensure it is getting the signature project it wants for the city of 5,300, which is completely surrounded by Denver.

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“I don’t think it’s beneficial to just have any project,” he said.
Plans for Glendale 180 ran into difficulties in 2015 when the owners of a carpet store adjacent to the project site refused to sell their 6-acre parcel to the city. The situation generated allegations by the store owners that the city planned to condemn their business and force a sale, which brought protesters out on the street to condemn the prospect of an eminent domain action by Glendale.
The city announced a few months later that it could proceed with construction of the project without the parcel where the carpet store stands.

Originally from Boston, John Aguilar covers Denver's suburbs for The Denver Post, where he has worked since April 2014. He has also worked at the Boulder County Business Report, the Rocky Mountain News and the Boulder Daily Camera.

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