Cherry Creek Perspective

Welcome to Cherry Creek Perspective which provides monthly news of mobility-related real estate throughout the Denver-metro area, and news of real estate, public sector and economic developments in the southeast Denver – Glendale area, relying in part on articles published in Real Estate Perspective. Each business day for Real Estate Perspective, the JRES staff reviews all Denver metro area wide and local newspapers, trade journals, government websites, blogs and other sources for commercial and residential real estate and economic news. News items are condensed into easily readable summaries providing all of the essential facts for the Real Estate Perspective newsletter. And Apartment Perspective, provides a detailed update of Denver metro area apartment rental, vacancy and development/construction activity including proposed projects. A searchable library of all of the JRES newsletters content is available at:

The latest on Real Estate and Mobility is also available at a Group in LinkedIn with that name and moderated by Bill James at:

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Set your calendar for Rail~Volution Denver, September 17-20, 2017. Energize your mind and find the partnerships and tools you need to build livable, vibrant communities with transit. Mobility is changing, but transit is still the backbone for creating vibrant, livable places. At Rail~Volution Denver 2017 you can expect a dynamic mix of speakers from different perspectives and geographies. You’ll find out how new mobility options and new technologies are changing practices on the ground. You’ll also learn about innovative approaches to affordable housing, healthy communities, and getting more out of limited resources. For over 20 years, Rail~Volution has been the place to engage in thoughtful discussions with change makers and influencers, the place to share ideas and breakthroughs, frustrations and inspiration, about building livable communities with transit.

Denver Community Planning and Development reports that city planners have heard from thousands of Denverites about your priorities for how we grow as a city. Join us at one of five Blueprint Denver workshops in September to review and provide input on draft maps and potential future growth strategies. We’ll talk about creating new transit corridors, employment and residential hubs, and ensuring all residents have access to amenities, transportation, jobs, trail connections and quality open space. Join your neighbors and city planners to help identify ways of managing population growth that are inclusive, equitable and honor the things we love most about our city.  The southeast Denver workshop is Thursday, September 14 at 5:30 p.m. at University of Denver: Anderson Academic Commons, 2150 E Evans Ave



RTD and Transdev receive driverless vehicle

RTD and longtime operating partner, Transdev, tested an autonomous shuttle last month to explore the future of transportation. The electric driverless vehicle, an EZ10 shuttle manufactured by French company EasyMile, accommodates 12 people at a time and protects passengers from road hazards and technical failures. Fleet management software enables remote and real-time monitoring and control.  While RTD doesn’t have plans to purchase these vehicles, we’re always looking at ways to innovate and examine new mobility options to meet the transportation needs of our growing region. Learn more about the EZ10 shuttle.

Denver City Council Member Jolon Clark reports that eTuks have started serving the Heart of Broadway:

When: Thursday Nights from 6 to 10:30 p.m. starting July 13, and running through October 5

Where: Circulating the Broadway Corridor from the Alameda Light Rail station to 6th Avenue with five stops.

Cost: FREE!

Thank you to eTuks, the Baker Broadway Merchants Association, Punch Bowl Social, Xcel Energy, New Amsterdam Organics, and D4 Urban for helping to make this pilot happen and make all rides FREE.

Eyes on the Street: The 14th Street Bike Lane Is Immediately Denver’s Best

Unlike the dilapidated plastic posts on the 15th Street bike lane, this bikeway’s curbs make for a comfortable ride on a popular route.


“Around the time cars began to dominate cities, no respectable urbanite would want to be considered a “Jay”—1920s slang for a country bumpkin.”

Driverless cars and trucks don’t mean mass unemployment—they mean new kinds of jobs

“Many forecasts estimate, ours included, that shared autonomous vehicle fleets will begin being introduced in 2020 and start materially cannibalizing the driver-driven segment by the middle of the decade…Historically, wholesale job retraining has been challenging to scale, but the inexorable nature of this transition demands that we try to help them be productive in an even more digitized world economy.”

Colorado debuts driverless truck to protect road crews

“It just didn’t make any sense to me to have a human being in a truck designed to be hit,” Shailen Bhatt, executive director of the Colorado Department of Transportation, said in an interview Friday.

These videos show pure traffic chaos – or do they?

“Imagine an alternative world without traffic rules, where you approach a junction and there’s no encouraging green light to get you on your way…In streets where this has already been implemented – from Germany to Japan to Israel – rather than increasing traffic collisions, road rage, fear and the negative emotions that come with the loss of order, it has in fact improved the appearance of roads, sociability – and even reduced road accidents in some cases.”

6 Reasons Electric Vehicles Are Taking Over The World

“Depending on a variety of factors, you can get a significant amount of cash for purchasing an electric car. For example, if you live in Colorado and meet the right conditions, you could get over $10,000 in subsidies from the federal and state government. This can make the decision to go all electric that much easier.”

Autonomous Vehicles and Streets: A Guide to Potential Impacts

Drones on Streets – Not the flying kind (those are probably further off in the future) but the terrestrial ones. Picture an Amazon truck parking in a neighborhood and sending off twenty delivery AV rovers. Will those drive in the street? On the sidewalk? How will they affect other modes? What should we suggest or try to regulate?

Smart Technology Is Coming To A City Near You

“The Mile High City is partnering with local educational institutions, tech companies and developers to create an entrepreneurial city. One of its biggest developments, Peña Station NEXT, is a partnership with the city, Panasonic and developer L.C. Fulenwider…Denver will improve transportation by using intelligent transportation systems, which include wireless communication, car navigation and traffic signal regulation, to monitor and improve transit.”

Vox/Mobility Lab video: The high cost of free parking

Bottom line, says Shoup: “We require our cities to be built with a lot of parking. Off-street parking requirements really spread throughout the United States faster than almost any other urban-planning invention. They arose partly because of the lack of management of on-street parking.”

The Dilemma When Uber or Lyft Outcompetes Public Transit

“One possibility is that government will mandate minimum levels of service in all communities where ridesharing firms are allowed to operate. Maybe in exchange for agreeing to such an arrangement, large incumbent companies would be offered licenses denied to other companies. We’ll have traded the taxi medallion system for a new entrenched regulatory regime.”


Real Estate

Denver City Council Member Paul Kashmann reports that, Council voted 10-2 (I voted “yes”) to approve the $1.8 billion proposal to revamp the main terminal (the Great Hall) at Denver International Airport. The purpose of the P3 (Public-Private Partnership) plan is to revamp our security process and relocate it to the north half of the sixth level currently occupied by ticket counters and offices, as well as replace our current fifth-level security operations with another 50,000 sq.ft. of restaurants and retail, and an upgraded reception/greeting area (think along the lines of Union Station).

The plan brings together DIA and a three-pronged private partnership including locally-based Saunders Construction, Ferrovial (a huge Spanish Corporation involved at airports around the world, including ownership of Heathrow Airport in London), and an equity group led by former basketball star and long-time businessman, Earvin “Magic” Johnson.

The construction is budgeted at $650 million. DIA will put up $480 million with the private partners investing $170 million. DIA has also set aside a $120 million contingency fund to cover changes it may decide to make along the way. Unexpected cost overruns will be absorbed by Ferrovial et al. After construction (four to five years), Ferrovial will manage the concessions in the Great Hall for 30 years, splitting the revenue from those concessions at a ratio of 80% (DIA’s share) to 20% (Ferrovial). Construction costs along with interest, and 30 years of operations and maintenance charges brings the total contract cost to a cap of $1.8 billion.

If DIA chose to bond the needed money instead of involving private partners, they could gain significant savings. Airport CEO Kim Day is firm that having the builder assume the risk of cost overruns, project management and operations and maintenance of the Great Hall makes the investment well worth the higher cost.

Currently, Council approves concession contracts at DIA, but the proposed contract places all responsibility for Great Hall concessions (10 -15 percent of the airport concessions) with Ferrovial for the length of the agreement. Ceding this oversight is a matter of concern that has gotten much attention, along with the finances, labor issues and other elements of the project. I have spoken with talented, informed folks whom I respect who think this is a bad deal, and I have spoken with talented, informed folks whom I respect who think this deal makes good sense. After a great deal of investigation and reflection, I arrived at a place of comfort that the contract protects the airport against financial catastrophe during construction and during the length of the contract. Our security vulnerabilities must be addressed as quickly as possible, we must dramatically reduce the time and stress of going through security and the floor of the Great Hall should be a suitable compliment to the majesty of the roof above, not simply a corral for a travel-inspired cattle call.–den–great-hall-facts.html

Council Member Mary Beth Susman reports that Denver City Council unanimously referred to the November ballot the 2017 General Obligation Bond. The Bond has been divided into seven ballot question for transportation and mobility, safety, Denver Public Library, parks and recreation, Denver Health Medical Center, city-owned cultural facilities, and city-owned facility improvements.

The process started last year as the bond committee solicited residents, city agencies, council, and the mayor’s office for ideas. More than 4,000 ideas for investment were received through emails and public meetings. More than sixty volunteer stakeholder committee members staffed five committees and reviewed potential projects for transportation and mobility, arts and culture, city-owned facilities, parks and recreation, and safety. These committees submitted their winnowed list to an executive committee that further narrowed down the list. From there the executive committee sent the package of projects to the mayor’s office for review. Finally, the bond package was sent to City Council for final review and debate, and ultimately referral to the ballot.

The package of infrastructure investments includes 460 projects valued at $937 million. More than half of the projects on the list will fix and repair existing infrastructure, with the remainder dedicated to upgrades and new infrastructure across the city. More than half the dollar amount goes to projects addressing Denver’s over-burdened transportation system.

Council Member Wayne New reports on the Platte to Park Hill (P2P) Storm Drainage Project and City Park Golf Course.  The City Park Golf Course funding bill was approved at the August 14 City Council meeting. This golf course redesign is required due to the planned P2P storm drainage retention area that will be developed on the course. Much of the opposition discussion centered on the part of this storm drainage project that is associated with the I-70 development, which is already underway.

The $5 million redesign of the golf course will feature a new club house, full driving range, and golf course hole changes that will improve the course layout and will include the retention area as part of the design. Two golf course design firms will be involved, and Hale Irwin will be one of the designers. Hale Irwin is a University of Colorado graduate, was one of the most successful and popular professional golf tour players for 30 years, and has extensive golf course design experience.

Council Member Kendra Black reports that Wellshire Golf Course is transitioning from High Line Canal water and is installing a new irrigation system using potable water. Construction on the new irrigation system began after Labor Day and will extend to spring 2018.  Also the construction on Tower 3 at the Colorado Center (2000 S. Colorado Blvd.) has been completed, adding more than 220,000 square feet of office space with a ground floor space designed for high-end restaurants.

Also Council Member Black reports that after 5 years of planning, design work and fundraising, The Denver Art Museum will begin renovation work on the North Building starting Nov. 20, 2017. This project will feature a new Welcome Center, bring more educational programming into the museum and address critical infrastructure issues.


From the LinkedIn Group – Mobility and Real Estate


“A new trend in local economic development is emerging. Companies today are less interested in tax breaks and more interested in vibrant neighborhoods with affordable housing options, restaurants, nightlife, and other amenities in walking distance, and a range of transportation options for their employees. Talented workers—and the companies who want to employ them—are increasingly moving to these sorts of places.”


“Until now, homebuyers, real estate investors, asset managers, developers, planners and economic development professionals have experienced difficulty accessing a comprehensive database in a simple, standardized methodology to benchmark month-to-month changes in home values and rental rates in TOD locations.”

Why are Trader Joe’s parking lots so small?

“They act like people go to places for good parking, but it’s not true,” he says. “We’re learning that you don’t have to oversupply parking everywhere to make places attractive. In fact, it makes them less attractive because they’re all spread out and not walkable.”

Transitioning Building Design to a Future of Compact, Driverless Cars

“Compact driverless electric cars, once they become mainstream, will usher in many changes in U.S. urban centers from how cities are designed to how real estate is developed, he said. Curbside parking may disappear. Parking spaces will be narrower. Office buildings may need a large “queuing” area at the front where autonomous cars drop their passengers. Parking garages and parking lots will be converted to other uses.”


“One unknown effect of AVs will be how it changes transit. On the one hand, this new technology could be a boon for transit as it helps solve transit’s perennial first/last mile hurdle. Lyft can get people to the train, light rail, or bus station, increasing catchment areas and boosting ridership. On the other, riders may simply decide to stay in that Lyft all the way to their destination – especially as the price of the trip drops dramatically as technology replaces the highest cost of the trip – the drivers. ”

Will dead malls be the next logistics hubs?

“Analysts estimate that about 400 of the roughly 1,100 malls across the country will close in the coming years. At the same time, there’s an enormous appetite for industrial space, which is expected to see 247 million square feet delivered this year, according to JLL.”

The Dilemma When Uber or Lyft Outcompetes Public Transit

“One possibility is that government will mandate minimum levels of service in all communities where ridesharing firms are allowed to operate. Maybe in exchange for agreeing to such an arrangement, large incumbent companies would be offered licenses denied to other companies. We’ll have traded the taxi medallion system for a new entrenched regulatory regime.”

City Council clears $1.8 billion terminal partnership for takeoff at Denver International Airport

“The most notable part of the plan for passengers is the relocation of all security screening to the north ends of the upper level, modernizing the checkpoints with faster technology. The project calls for consolidating ticketing areas — already shrinking as the airlines rely more on self-check-in kiosks — into smaller spaces.

In the ensuing three decades, Ferrovial — which operates London’s Heathrow Airport and is part of an international conglomerate — will manage expanded money-generating concessions spaces on the main floor, including contracting with the operators of retail and food outlets.”

Denver’s 34-year deal at DIA might be the city’s first big public-private partnership, but don’t expect it to be the last

“No P3 is exactly alike. But advocates argue that the public benefits from private-sector innovation that occurs when project financing is coupled with design, construction, operation and maintenance, as happens in the most complete deals.

“That’s what it’s really all about: For every dollar you pay an architect, the contractor gets about 10 bucks, and the maintenance and operation costs about $100 over the next 40 years,” said Frank M. Rapoport, a P3 negotiations attorney with the New York law firm Peckar & Abramson. He also is the chief strategy adviser for the Association for the Improvement of American Infrastructure. “(Private partners) know they’re stuck maintaining this building for 30 or 40 years.

“You know, often they overbuild it,” he said, to reduce upkeep costs later on.”

RTD and Denver seek developer for affordable condos at 29th and Welton

“We do know that some of the condos will be priced to be affordable to people earning 80 percent of area median income, per OED. It’s also possible for the development to have commercial space on the ground floor. OED also says that zoning allows for a five-story mixed-use building.”

Here’s a closer look at some of the projects slated for East Colfax

“Secrist is just one of the developers betting on East Colfax. Other major projects in the pipeline include a seven-story apartment, multiple retail strips and a sanctuary. Many feel the pace of redevelopment on the corridor will only increase in coming years.”

The Cherry Creek Parkageddon Never Came. Where Is All the Hoopla?

“The Denver neighborhood, which is bound by 6 th Avenue, Colorado Boulevard, and Cherry Creek S. Drive and includes the Cherry Creek North shopping area and the Cherry Creek shopping center, saw an increase in retail sales tax collections in February from $2,368,058 in 2016 to $2,408,471 in 2017.”


Partnering with Brookfield Asset Management (BAM), Macy’s has identified at least 50 of its 841 stores that are suitable for a parking lot redevelopment opportunity known in the industry as “out-lots” or “carve-outs.”

Here’s why Denver’s thinking about center-lane buses on Colfax

“It turns out all the people who showed up for public comment helped change the city’s mind from an earlier side-street design.  Under this plan, buses on Colfax would get roughly 15 minutes faster through design alone. The buses would also move 28,000 more people, more than twice the current volume, when finished in 2035. Elsewhere, BRT lowered travel times by 40 percent in Mexico City and spurred $6.3 billion of investment in Cleveland.”

Denver’s Mariposa District leads charge in changing the face of public housing

“The Mariposa District is located near RTD’s 10th and Osage rail station. The brick public housing built in 1954 fell to modern apartments and condos and the city added more capacity. Before construction started in 2012, 252 people were living in the 14-acre area. Now, about 1,500 people occupy the 581 mixed-income units…DHA’s executive director Ismael Guerrero said the phased approach is what caught the attention of other housing authorities around the country.  “It was often a model of demolishing the entire site and building from the ground up,” Guerrero said about past tactics. “We knew that was a concern, so we started building replacement housing first, and then demolishing after families had options (of where to go).”  In cases where projects are razed and rebuilt, typically only 10 to 15 percent of tenants return. About 48 percent returned to the Mariposa District.”

The Future of Growing Cities Requires Less Parking, More Shared Rides

“Autonomous vehicles cannot totally replace public mass transportation, Bouteiller said. “Mass transport in the future will be rails, full stop,” he said. The efficiency of trains on tracks, whether underground, on street level, or elevated, is unparalleled by any other mode of transportation. But he thinks inner-city movement could become much more flexible in the future, perhaps in the form of autonomous eight-seat buses—a middle ground between traditional buses and taxis.”

A Suburb Embraces Rail and BRT | Talking about Denver’s Rail~Volution

“The City approached partners at RTD to develop an Intergovernmental Agreement that allowed the City to build a parking structure, access roads, a bus loading and unloading facility, and the transit plaza on the north side of the rail corridor. As part of revising the original RTD surface-parking plan, City staff focused on improving connections and fostering future transit-oriented development with a revised station design. Now, the station and the surrounding area are envisioned as a key neighborhood asset within Westminster. Station design focused on creating an amenity and setting the stage for future development, a safe and attractive transit environment for patrons, and key connections to new development, transit and open space.”



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