Private Development Partner Needed for CU Denver Facilities Master Plan

DENVERThe University of Colorado Denver is collaborating with real estate advisory and management firm JLL to find a real estate development partner for the implementation of its Facilities Master Plan.

JLL will work with CU Denver to determine how to leverage existing real estate assets and realize master plan priorities, including building a new, first-year residence hall and dining facility to meet the needs of its growing student body.

“As Colorado’s only public urban research university, CU Denver is committed to its home in the heart of this vibrant city,” said CU Denver Chancellor Dorothy Horrell. “We’ve hired JLL to help us determine how we can maximize our real estate assets to the benefit of our students now, while ensuring our land is preserved for the needs of our university in the future.”

JLL is soliciting a private-sector partner for a development, operation and management opportunity at Walnut and 4th Streets (near the intersection of Colfax Ave. and Auraria Parkway) that includes the existing 700-bed Campus Village Apartments and an adjacent, undeveloped parcel.

“The site offers an existing revenue stream from the in-demand Campus Village Apartments. It’s located next to the Auraria Campus with nearly 50,000 students, as well as two light rail stops — one of which provides direct access to Mile High Stadium,” said Bob Hunt, managing director with JLL Higher Education Group. “It’s an attractive development opportunity for a partner to activate under-utilized land with mixed-use development, enabling CU Denver to direct its focus and funding to its critical facility needs.”

The selected partner will also work with CU Denver to develop a first-year housing and dining facility on the Auraria Campus. This new facility will bring first-year students into the heart of CU Denver’s campus neighborhood and strengthen the university’s connection to downtown Denver.

CU Denver Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs Raul Cardenas says the new residence facility will help build community, acclimate students to campus and further connect them to the university’s vibrant downtown setting. “I look at this as a gateway for our students, a way to show them what our campus is really about. They will feel that energy from the get-go.”

The partnership contract will be structured as a long-term land lease with the university retaining land ownership. The resulting revenue will be used for campus priorities such as the development of the first-year residence and dining hall and to fund ongoing operations and maintenance services.

The partner will be selected by March 2019.

This is the first step of the university’s Facilities Master Plan, which spans the next 10 years. The plan also includes a new engineering and physical sciences building.

Images courtesy of JLL

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