Apartment Perspective Sample Issue

Overview

Denver remains a popular apartment market for developers, lenders, investors and renters. The metro area benefits from a vibrant economy, attractive natural and built environments and a welcoming attitude towards newcomers. These factors combine to generate apartment development, investment and demand.
Developers continue to build and plan new apartments in metro Denver and no slowdown in construction activity is evident. Rental rates were increasing due to strong demand, but the amount of new apartment construction coming onto the market is causing conditions to soften. More incentives and specials are being offered, especially in newly completed projects and in the upper rental rate range.
Over the long term Denver remains an attractive market for apartment investment but it is important to be cautious since market conditions may deteriorate in 2017.

The Denver Apartment Market

The apartment market in metro Denver contains 217,779 units in apartment properties of 50 units or more. The City & County of Denver has the largest number of units, followed by Arapahoe County. Development is active in all metropolitan seven counties, especially in Denver. Transit-oriented and downtown projects comprise many of the metro Denver apartment properties underway and planned. A very limited amount of development of rental apartments is taking place in projects with less than 50 units.
The following table shows, by county, the number of units in projects of 50 units or more existing, under construction and proposed as of the end of the 1st quarter of 2017. Not all of the proposed projects are likely to be built, and others will subsequently be announced. In addition the table lists the number of units started and completed during the 1st quarter of 2017 and for all of 2016:

Country Units Exisiting Units Under
Construction
Units Proposed 1st Quarter
Started
Total 2016
Started
1st Quarter
Completed
Total 2016
Completed
Adams 29,079 839 1,026 0 1,100 511 740
Arapahoe 50,478 3,028 1,514 0 1,742 238 827
Boulder 13,643 1,847 3,011 0 1,847 0 422
Broomfield 6,737 508 1,121 0 0 168 600
Denver 74,518 13,397 11,511 2,405 5,766 1,612 4,557
Douglas 15,106 2,149 1,127 0 1,952 0 1,221
Jefferson 28,218 3,457 3,417 893 1,382 997 836
Total 217,779 25,225 22,727 3,298 13,789 1,808 9,203

The Denver Economy

Apartment demand is driven by several factors, including population growth and the health of the local economy, measured primarily by growth in employment. Apartment demand, defined as net absorption (physical occupancies minus departures), is also affected by demographics.
In Denver, for example, the influx of younger residents or “millennials” benefits apartment demand, as does the rising demand for apartments by older “lifestyle renters” who no longer desire the responsibilities of property ownership. To some extent the number of college and university students also affects the market, especially in Boulder and in neighborhoods adjacent to the University of Denver and to the Auraria higher education campus downtown.
In terms of younger renters, however, it is important to recognize that many are burdened by student loan debt and may not be making salaries adequate enough to justify renting some of the more expensive apartment units popular among developers today.
The following table shows employment and unemployment data from the US Bureau of Labor Statistics for the US, the State of Colorado and metro Denver. Data is for March 2017 for the US and Colorado and for February for Denver, Boulder and metro. All data is preliminary. The Bureau of Labor Statistics defines Boulder as a separate metro area for statistical purposes. Change in employment and unemployment is from the same period one year before.
Employment growth for metro Denver and the state of Colorado remains positive, although the growth rate slowed in late 2016 and early 2017. The federal data is often amended later so it is best to follow trends instead of actual numbers.

 

Employment Change Unemployment Change
United States 145,858,000 1.5% 4.5% -0.5%
Colorado 2,857,600 2.9% 2.6% -0.7%
Denver 1,510,900 2.7% 3.2% -0.4%
Boulder 180,300 2.9% 2.8% -0.3%
Denver/Boulder Metro 1,691,200 2.7% 3.1% -0.4%

 

To put matters in a broader perspective, the following table shows year-end employment and unemployment trends in metro Denver (including Boulder County) since 2010, using data from the US Bureau of Labor Statistics. Change for 2017 is from the 1st Quarter of 2016, indicating the possible slowing of employment growth in metro Denver

 

Year Employment Change % Change Unemployment
2017 1,691,200 44,900 2.7% 3.1%
2016 1,687,300 67,500 4.2 2.5
2015 1,619,800 10,700 0.7 3.0
2014 1,609,800 55,300 3.6 3.9
2013 1,553,800 38,000 2.5 5.5
2012 1,515,800 33,200 2.2 6.9
2011 1,482,600 31,100 2.1 7.8
2010 1,451,500 20,600 1.4 8.7

 

Total employment in the Denver metro area has been increasing since 2010, rebounding from the effects of the Great Recession of 2008 and 2009. However, the increase between the end of 2014 and late 2015 showed a considerable slowing in the rate of growth. The slowdown in employment growth became evident in the spring of 2015. Since then growth has rebounded.
Denver continues to be mentioned on numerous “best of” lists, some of which are frivolous but others pertain to actual economic performance. Even with the vagaries in employment trends the metro economy is still attracting new businesses. Indicative of the fluidity of the local economy, several major announcements were made during the 1st quarter of 2017 that will result in new employment, including:

  • Amazon will occupy a regional distribution center in Aurora and employ approximately 1,000 people.
  • Smucker’s will build a manufacturing plant in Longmont, creating 500 jobs.
  • Ball Corporation is expanding its Westminster manufacturing plant and will create about 300 new positions.
  • TransAmerican Corporation is adding 200 jobs at its downtown Denver office.
  • Partners Group AG selected Denver for its new US headquarters and will construct a new building in the Interlocken Business Park in Broomfield. The new headquarters will house about 150 employees.
  • United Health eliminated 120 positions in Centennial.
  • Software company eFolder selected Denver as its new headquarters, consolidating operations in Atlanta and San Francisco. About 108 people will work in the new headquarters, the location of which was not announced.

Of the most appropriate “best of” rankings, Denver was included on the following during the 1st quarter of 2017:

  • US News and World Report magazine named Denver as the 2nd best major city in the US for quality of life.
  • An analysis by LinkedIn ranked Denver 4th for relocations of companies from the Bay Area, following Portland, Seattle and Austin.
  • Travel management firm On Call International rated Denver 5th best US city for business travel.
  • A study by American City Business Journals found that metro Denver had the 7th highest population growth rate among major cities from 2010 to 2016.
  • Real estate firm CBRE ranked Denver as the 8th best metro area for commercial property investment.

A factor to take into consideration is the decline in energy jobs in Colorado, especially for the coal, oil and natural gas sectors. This decline is due to lower prices caused by vastly increased US domestic supply of recently discovered natural gas and lessened demand due to competition from renewable sources, stricter environmental controls, a worldwide market glut and economic slowdowns in Europe and other economies.
Some energy analysts believe that the situation may be improving. So far evidence of a rebound is limited to the addition of some drilling rigs but employment remains depressed.
In Colorado the effects have been felt most in the producing sections of the state, especially in the northeast and northwest. In Denver there have been closures of regional and national oil and gas company offices, although the magnitude of the job losses has not been great. Those types of losses are being felt more in cities with greater concentrations of energy jobs, such as Houston and Oklahoma City. Nonetheless, it is a situation to watch, and is also affecting the downtown office market as space is being vacated or offered for sublease just when a large amount of new speculative space is being completed.
Conversely, Denver is a center for the development of new energy technologies, especially in wind and solar power. The growth in these companies helps to create something of a balance to job losses in the coal, oil and natural gas sectors. However, the Trump administration’s apparent hostility to such sources may be a negative for Denver’s economy.

Denver Apartment Market Conditions

For purposes of vacancy rates, net absorption, and rental rates we use data supplied quarterly by the Apartment Association of Metro Denver. We have concerns about some of the methodology used in that report, so it is best to consider trends instead of the AAMD report’s actual numbers.

For development activity, however, construction starts and completions are based on actual quarterly visits by James Real Estate Services, Inc. staff to the locations of every apartment community of fifty units or more under construction or proposed in metro Denver.

The following table shows market conditions and development activity for 2016 and recent years. The 2017 vacancy and rental rate data are for the end of the 1st Quarter. Absorption numbers, starts and completions are for the entire year. Data for previous years is annual or year end. Rental rate change is a comparison of the 1st Quarter 2016 and 1st Quarter 2017 averages.

 

Vacancy Net Absorption Units Started Units Completed Average Rental Rate Rental Rate Change
2017 5.7% 4,664 3,298 1,808 $1,382 5.1%
2016 6.2 11,056 13,789 9,203 1,347 4.3
2015 6.8 864 9,562 10,952 $1,292 .6
2014 4.7 6,474 10,842 8,236 1,168 8.8
2013 5.2 2,788 10,417 3,741 1,074 9.7
2012 4.9 3,138 9,643 2,194 979 5.0
2011 5.4 1,536 3,029 1,051 932 2.5
2010 5.5 6,827 1,406 3,503 909 3.9
2009 7.7 4,069 1,054 2,009 875 2.0

 

Our concerns with the AAMD methodology involve the calculations of net absorption, average rental rates and the counting of the number of units completed, all factors that affect the reported vacancy rate and overall condition of the market. In particular:

  • Net absorption is accurate only when comparing “same store” occupancy changes in each survey, plus the number of units occupied in projects completed during the reported quarter. Otherwise net absorption and vacancy rates can be skewed, resulting in unrealistic swings.
  • The reporting of average rental rate changes can be likewise inflated by mixing into the overall average the rental rates for newly completed projects. Most of the new apartment communities in metro Denver have rental rates well above the overall average. The more accurate methodology is to measure “same store” communities.

We are further concerned that incomplete information will lead developers, lenders and investors to make uninformed decisions. This is particularly the case with out-of-town firms that do not possess or obtain local knowledge. There has also been a virtual “feeding frenzy” among some national and international investors eager to invest in Denver, often at high prices. Vacancy, rental rate and net absorption numbers, therefore, should be viewed with healthy skepticism.

Because of our concerns about these reporting issues we believe that the metro Denver vacancy rate is actually in the 7% to 8% range rather than the AAMD estimated 5.7%. In addition, rental rates are being affected by specials and concessions offered in many properties, especially at the upper end of the rental rate spectrum. We anticipate that the metro vacancy rate will continue to trend upward in 2017.

Units Started by County

The following table shows the number of apartment units started in the seven metro Denver counties during the years 2009 through 2016. Units started in 2017 are for the 1st Quarter.

 

Adams Arapahoe Boulder Broomfield Denver Douglas Jefferson Metro
2017 0 0 0 0 2,405 0 893 3,298
2016 1,100 1,742 1,847 0 5,766 1,952 1,382 13,789
2015 161 1,478 60 508 5,692 676 987 9,562
2014 981 623 629 600 5,189 1,212 1,590 10,842
2013 722 1,697 1,141 478 5,517 511 351 10,417
2012 470 1,174 940 1,438 4,248 697 176 9,643
2011 188 223 74 272 1,518 288 466 3,029
2010 372 280 347 0 407 0 0 1,406
2009 0 328 254 0 502 0 0 1,054

 

The following 15 apartment communities containing 3,298 units were started in metro Denver during the 1st Quarter of 2017. All of the new projects started during the period were in Denver and Jefferson counties.

Denver County

  • 1570 – 1578 Humbodlt Street, 100 “micro-units” by Pando Holdings in the Denver Central submarket.
  • 2401 Blake Street, 286 units in the Ballpark neighborhood of the Denver Central submarket by Lennar Multifamily.
  • Ascend Union Station, 162 units in the Denver Central submarket at 1959 Wewatta Street by Greystar Residential.
  • Emerson Place, 84 units at 1833 Emerson Street in the Denver Central submarket by Allante Properties.
  • Encore Evans Station, 235 units at 1805 South Bannock Street in the Denver South submarket by Encore Multifamily LLC. The site is several blocks north of the RTD light rail station at West Evans Avenue.
  • Hanover Broadway Station, 303 units by Hanover Company at the northeast corner of South Broadway and East Arizona Avenue in the Denver South submarket. The location is several blocks south of the RTD light rail station at South Broadway and West Kentucky Avenue.
  • Park 17, 190 units at 1655 Lafayette Street in the Denver Central submarket by Lynd Company.
  • SOVA, 211 units by McWhinney at 1901 Grant Street in the Denver Central submarket.
  • Paul Collection 255, an 84 unit building at 255 St. Paul Street in Cherry Creek North by BMC Investments. The 210 building started in 2016. The St. Paul Collection will also include street level retail space.
  • TriVista on Speer, 322 units at 1350 Speer Boulevard in the Denver Central submarket by Legacy Partners.
  • Vue @ Mile High, 382 units by Embrey Partners at 3200 West Colfax Avenue in the Denver West submarket. The project replaces a derelict shopping center and is adjacent to the new Denver Public Library Gonzales branch.
  • X @ Sloan’s Lake Phase II, the conversion of a former office building into 46 apartment units at 1552 Xavier Street in the Denver West submarket. The 58 unit first phase started in 2016. The developers are Slipstream Properties and Peak Development Group.

 

Jefferson County

  • Alvera, 302 units by Confluence Companies at 11700 West 58th Avenue in Arvada.
  • Oak Street Station, 291 units at 1420 Oak Street in west Lakewood by Beaver 1420 LLC. As the name indicates, the project is adjacent to the RTD Oak Street light rail station.
  • Vanguard Green Gables, 300 units at 6800 West Jewell Avenue in unincorporated Jefferson County, just south of the City of Lakewood boundary. The apartments are part of the mixed-use redevelopment of the former Green Gables Country Club at the southeast corner of South Wadsworth Boulevard and West Jewell Avenue.

No new apartment communities were started in Adams, Boulder or Douglas counties during the 4th quarter of 2015. The twelve projects upon which construction started will contain 3,071 units.

 

Units Completed by County

The following table shows apartment unit completions by county in metro Denver since 2009. Data for 2017 is for units completed during the 1st Quarter.

Adams Arapahoe Boulder Broomfield Denver Douglas Jefferson Metro
2017 511 238 0 0 714 285 60 1,808
2016 740 827 422 600 4,557 1,221 836 9,203
2015 622 2,106 1,054 592 4,985 596 997 10,952
2014 524 272 1,100 1,354 4,731 156 99 8,236
2013 220 136 96 272 1,424 985 488 3,741
2012 300 503 74 0 1,317 0 0 2,194
2011 72 328 313 0 338 0 0 1,051
2010 0 1,112 0 673 1,475 243 0 3,503
2009 385 1,100 50 0 474 0 0 2,009

Nine apartment communities were completed during the 1st Quarter of 2017. The projects completed during the quarter added 1,808 units to the metro Denver market.

 

Adams County

  • The second phase of Belle Creek Commons, 46 units by Chartered Development Corporation at the southwest corner of Belle Creek Boulevard and East 108th Place in Commerce City. The apartments are located in the Belle Creek neighborhood near the intersection of US-85 and East 104th
  • Parkhouse, 465 units by Lennar Multifamily at 14310 Grant Street in Thornton. The project is located near the I-25 interchange with East 144th

 Arapahoe County

  • Oxford Station, 238 units by Littleton Capital Partners at 1366 West Oxford Avenue in Englewood. The project is across West Oxford Avenue from an RTD light rail station. It combines new construction with adaptive reuse of some existing industrial buildings.

 Denver County

  • Dylan, 274 units by Alliance Residential at 3101 Brighton Boulevard in RiNo in the Denver Central submarket.
  • Eviva Cherokee, 274 units by Charter Realty Group and Integral Group at 1259 Cherokee Street in the Denver Central submarket.
  • Highlands 32, 148 units by Alliance Residential at 3251 Lowell Boulevard in the Denver West submarket.
  • Mariposa Phase VII-B, another phase of Mariposa, the redevelopment by the Denver Housing Authority of a former public housing community. The latest phase contains 18 rental townhouses.

Douglas County

  • Enclave @ Cherry Creek, 285 units by AG Spanos Corporation at 17565 Pine Lane in Parker.

Jefferson County

  • Village of Belmar, 60 units of independent senior housing by Ascent Living Communities at 7955 West Alameda Avenue in Lakewood. Other sections of the overall project include assisted living units and memory care beds.

 

No new apartment communities were completed in Boulder or Broomfield counties during the 1st Quarter of 2017.

Vacancy Rates

The vacancy rates listed below are from the 1st Quarter 2017 report by the Apartment Association of Metro Denver. As mentioned above, we have concerns about the report’s methodology, and therefore, its accuracy, so we recommend that attention be paid mainly to trends.

Studio apartments, also called “efficiencies” by some, have returned as a popular unit type, especially in new upper-rental range apartment communities. Many of these projects are oriented to younger residents who are attracted to urban locations and amenities but prefer to live alone and do not need large apartments.

Even smaller “micro” apartments are popular in some expensive cities such as Boston, New York, San Francisco and Seattle but are just now emerging in Denver. The first such project, Turntable Studios, was completed in 2015 in a former hotel near Sports Authority Field at Mile High. Several other “micro” projects are now under construction and in planning stages, mainly in central Denver.

The following table shows vacancy rates by unit type since the end of 2009. Vacancy rates for 2016 are for the 4th quarter:

Studio 1 BR 2 BR/2B 3BR Overall
2017 6.3% 5.3% 6.5% 6.7% 5.7%
2016 6.8 5.9 7.0 6.3 6.2
2015 7.3 6.6 7.4 6.7 6.8
2014 3.5 4.4 5.4 5.2 4.7
2013 4.9 4.9 5.7 5.3 4.7
2012 3.3 4.4 5.8 5.1 4.9
2011 3.5 4.9 5.9 6.0 5.4
2010 3.7 5.1 6.1 5.6 5.5
2009 6.6 7.3 8.3 8.0 7.7

Note: Vacancy rates are for year-end for 2009 through 2017.

Vacancy rates fluctuate due to the addition of new properties to the market. As reported above, there were, at the end of the 1st Quarter of 2017, over 25,000 units under construction in metro Denver, of which over half were in the City & County of Denver. Many of the new properties are leasing units at the upper end of the rental rate spectrum, which raises concerns for overbuilding in 2017, especially in that segment of the market.

The Apartment Association of Metro Denver combines Boulder and Broomfield counties for the purposes of reporting vacancy and rental rates. The following table shows vacancy rates by county as of the 4th Quarter of 2016:

 

Adams Arapahoe Boulder Denver Douglas Jefferson Overall
2017 6.8% 5.3% 5.2% 6.5% 5.9% 4.2% 5.7%
2016 6.1 6.6 5.5 7.2 5.8 4.4 6.2
2015 5.6 6.2 7.8 7.6 9.3 5.3 6.8
2014 3.7 4.9 7.2 4.6 4.0 3.8 4.7
2013 5.3 5.2 3.4 6.1 5.0 4.6 5.2
2012 4.5 5.0 3.7 6.1 4.2 4.2 4.9
2011 5.3 6.8 4.4 4.8 4.7 4.4 5.4
2010 5.7 6.6 3.6 5.2 5.2 4.5 5.5
2009 6.3 8.6 5.8 8.8 5.5 7.3 7.7

Note: Vacancy rates are for year-end for 2009 through 2017.

The AAMD attempts to take into consideration the effects of specials and incentives by reporting separately what it defines as “economic vacancy”. The 1st Quarter 2017 estimate for that category was 12.5%, down from the 13.0% reported in the 1st Quarter of 2016. From our discussions with apartment owners and managers we believe that the effects of specials and concessions result in a much higher economic vacancy rate than that estimated by the AAMD report.

Based on our analysis of development activity and the probable level of demand we believe that the actual current vacancy rate in metro Denver is more likely in the 7% to 8% range. It will vary, of course, by location, type of unit, class of property and rental rate. A vacancy range of 5% to 7% is usually considered indicative of a balanced market for both apartment owners and tenants. Considering the number of units coming on stream during 2017 we expect the metro vacancy rate to trend upwards during the next twelve months. This will, of course, also depend on the level of demand so any slowdown in employment growth would be problematical.

Rental Rates

The following table shows average rental rates by county since 2009 when the Denver market began to recover from the effects of the Great Recession. Although the Apartment Association of Metro Denver report indicates that average rental rates for metro Denver have risen over 53% between 2009 and 2016 it should be taken into consideration that these are not “same store” rental rates and include the addition of new properties, many of which have rental rates well above average for the market as a whole. The rate of increase of average rental rates reported, therefore, is inflated when compared to previous years. This situation unfortunately leads to considerably misleading reports in the media about rental rate trends in Denver.

Average rental rates reported by the AAMD also do not take into consideration the effects of “specials” and concessions, a situation that is occurring in most submarkets and which will likely be even more evident over the next twelve months.

We are observing in some apartment community advertisements and websites offers of free rent and reduced security deposits and application fees, situations one would not expect in a market with only a 5.7% vacancy rate. Indeed, one can often see “sign twirlers” standing on sidewalks (or on medians) in front of new apartment projects, seeking to generate visitors. That’s an activity more designed to draw customers to new restaurants, not apartments in a supposedly low-vacancy environment.

The following table that shows rental rate trends by unit type also includes, in the overall average, a small number of other unit types, such as two bedroom/one bath apartments and four bedroom apartments.

The Apartment Association of Metro Denver report, for purposes of data on rental rates and vacancy rates, combines survey results for apartment communities in Boulder and Broomfield counties. Rental rates for 2009 through 2016 are year-end averages. Average rental rate change for 2016 to 2017 is for 1st Quarters of each year.

 

Adams Arapahoe Boulder Denver Douglas Jefferson Overall
2017 $1,278 $1,315 $1,565 $1,413 $1,538 $1,349 $1,382
2016 1,251 1,290 1,499 1,376 1,495 1,308 1,347
2015 1,197 1,229 1,493 1,314 1,445 1,266 1,292
2014 1,096 1,120 1,329 1,183 1,384 1,123 1,168
2013 988 1,026 1,228 1,093 1,262 1,033 1,074
2012 949 995 1,198 1,065 1,187 994 979
2011 910 900 1,038 941 1,092 889 932
2010 893 890 996 911 1,090 847 909
2009 809 848 943 903 1,027 849 875

 

The following table shows the trend in average rental rates by unit type:

Studio 1 BR 2BR / 2B 3BR Overall Change
2017 $1,166 $1,234 $1,613 $1,893 $1,382 5.1%/td>
2016 1,117 1,202 1,569 1,845 1,347 4.3
2015 $1,060 $1,148 $1,508 $1,808 $1,292 10.6%
2014 914 1,034 1,383 1,635 1,168 8.8
2013 816 921 1,234 1,438 1,074 9.7
2012 771 848 1,171 1,407 979 5.0
2011 695 822 1,098 1,295 932 2.5
2010 656 795 1,069 1,284 909 3.9

Note: Rental rates are for year-end 2009 through 2017.

 

Apartment Investment in Metro Denver

Apartments are a favored investment category for a wide range of buyers. According to CoStar Group, the investment activity in metro Denver for apartment properties of fifty units or more in recent years has been as follows:

Year Total Sales (in thousands) Average Price Per Unit
2015 $3,298,000 $164,500
2014 3,640,000 151,244
2013 2,894,000 124,654
2012 2,600,000 93,415
2011 1,843,000 95,659
2010 560,600 70,263
2009 282,900 70,267

 

In 2013 investors set a metro Denver record with apartment sales of nearly $2.9 billion. In 2014 investors easily broke that record by acquiring 121 properties containing a total of 27,546 units for over $3.6 billion. Sales activity slowed somewhat during 2015, with investors acquiring only 88 apartment properties in metro Denver (with 50 units or more) containing 20,861 units for nearly $3.3 billion, according to CoStar Group sales data. According to brokers who specialize in apartment sales, buyers include local investors, real estate investment companies and a range of national and international institutional investors, including real estate investment trusts and life insurance companies. Acquisitions have included both existing apartment properties and those under construction.

 

Forecast

The potential exists for a continued softening of the metro market in into 2017 when many of the projects currently under construction come onto the market. During 2015 developers completed construction on projects adding 10,952 units to the market, followed by 9,203 units completed in 2016. There were 25,225 apartment units under construction in metro Denver at the end of the 1st Quarter of 2017, and another 22,727 proposed. We expect that between 12,000 and 13,000 units will be completed in 2017, which creates a strong potential for deteriorating market conditions during 2017.

Furthermore, depending on the fluctuations in job growth, apartment market conditions could deteriorate rather quickly. If the metro area’s economy expands at a slower rate that situation could combine with overbuilding to further soften the market in 2017.

To put the situation into a broader perspective, consider the following:

  • Over the 47 year period from 1969 to 2016 metro Denver governments issued building permits for an average of about 5,900 apartment units per year. The number fluctuated annually due to economic and market conditions, ranging from as low as 208 to nearly 25,000 units in 1972, with some 13,500 and 18,200 units in 1973 and 1971 respectively.
  • JRES has tracked both starts and completions in metro Denver since 2009. Between 2009 and 2013 the annual average number of units completed was 2,499. In 2014 the apartment construction boom started to be more evident, with 8,236 units completed, a pace that was exceeded in 2015 when 10,952 units were completed, just as demand slowed. During 2016 developers completed 9,203 units.
  • Many local real estate professionals consider 5,000 to 6,000 units to be the “normal” annual net absorption for apartments in metro Denver, although recent economic conditions have pushed the expected net absorption to 8,000 to 9,000
  • Over the thirteen year period of 2004 to 2016 net absorption, according to the Apartment Association of Metro Denver, averaged about 4,500 units per year in metro Denver. This depressed amount of demand was due to several factors, including the effects of the Great Recession and of competition from for-sale housing.
  • In 2015 the AAMD reported net absorption of only 864 units, which, if accurate, was a stunning decline from the levels of demand the AAMD reported in 2014 and during first half of 2015. For the 4th quarter of 2015 alone the AAMD reported negative absorption of 4,247 units, the greatest negative demand the AAMD has estimated in a single quarter since at least 2005. For 2016 the AAMD estimated net absorption as 11,056 units. This level of volatility between quarters should stretch the credulity of even the most optimistic observer.
  • Denver’s economy has been vibrant and helping to create demand for housing of all types. The tightness in the for-sale market has also created demand, at least temporarily, among some residents who would prefer to buy but cannot find a suitable residence to purchase. The decline in the demand for and the prices of gas, oil and coal is affecting the energy sector of the economy, which may have negative impact on Denver’s housing demand, since many national and regional oil and natural gas companies have headquarters or regional offices in Denver.
  • Denver is a very popular magnet for younger residents. However, many of these recent college graduates are burdened by student loan debt, which makes their ability to afford high-priced apartments challenging to their budgets.

If the potential exists for overbuilding at the upper end of the market, that is not a concern at the lower end. There is strong demand for affordable housing in metro Denver that is simply not being met. Some local governments, in particular the City & County of Denver, and the Colorado Housing and Finance Authority, are working to fill the gap but cutbacks in federal funding are a barrier to construction of more affordable units, whether in the “workforce” or senior categories. There appears to be no appetite in the current US Congress to increase such funding so efforts will be concentrated on the local level.

A competing factor for apartments is for-sale housing. This would normally be most evident with condominiums, but the inventory of those types of units is quite tight currently. Few new condos are being built in metro Denver, mainly because of the potential for construction defects lawsuits from unit owners and homeowner associations but also because of lender reticence. Most of the condo projects that started in 2016 and 2017 in metro Denver will be selling at prices high enough to justify the high premiums for defects insurance for developers and contractors

Efforts to change the laws allowing such suits have been unsuccessful until recently, where a compromise bill may be passed by the Colorado legislature. City councils in several metro area municipalities, including Denver, have adopted ordinances designed to address the issue but those ordinances (and any state law changes) are likely to result in extended legal actions by some homeowner associations and individual condo owners.

If the situation is alleviated by state or local legislation in some municipalities new condo development may create competition for new and existing apartments but likely not until at least the latter part of 2017. So far new condo construction in those municipalities where ordinances were approved has been minimal. There is also considerable uncertainty whether state or local governments have the constitutional authority to pass ordinances that infringe upon the rights of homeowners to sue builders over construction defects, thus creating uncertainty and the potential for legal challenges.

It should also be noted that the decline in condominium construction is not limited to Colorado. Developers find construction lenders often very reticent about lending on that type of construction. More popular are fee-simple townhouses, where homeowner associations do not have authority over construction issues. In most cases, townhouse HOAs handle (if at all) lawn care and sidewalk snow removal. Development of townhouses has been quite active in the metro area, especially in the Cherry Creek, Highlands, LoHi, Stapleton and Sloan’s Lake sections of the City & County of Denver.

Overall, since upcoming supply is known, it now all boils down to demand. We recommend that readers maintain a healthy skepticism and carefully track employment growth. The potential for overbuilding is not restricted to Denver; we see similar conditions arising in other popular growth markets in the US, especially Atlanta, Austin, Charlotte, Dallas, Nashville, Portland, Raleigh-Durham, San Francisco, Seattle and Washington, DC. In some of those cities market conditions have already begun to deteriorate and development is slowing.

All that being said, Denver is an excellent long term market. The citizens of metro Denver have wisely made investments that benefit the region’s long term viability, including the RTD FasTracks rail transit system, Denver International Airport, the Colorado Convention Center, the Denver Art Museum, History Colorado Center and the Denver Center for the Performing Arts, among others. In November of 2015 city voters extended a tourism tax that will help renovate and redevelop the National Western Center on Brighton Boulevard and expand the Colorado Convention Center. Denver’s social attitudes make newcomers and relocating businesses feel welcome.

Investors continue to seek apartment product in Denver and sales activity is brisk. How long that will last is open to question, especially if the market deteriorates substantially. Even then, a downturn in the apartment market should not last more than several years as long as the economy remains healthy and overbuilding does not get thoroughly out of balance.

 

Methodology

The properties included in the JRES Apartment Perspective exclude university student-specific housing and senior housing for which large upfront “buy-in” fees are required for occupancy. Regular age-restricted for-rent independent living senior housing communities are included but not units for assisted living or in nursing homes or memory care facilities. Otherwise, the report covers all apartment properties of 50 units or more contained in Adams, Arapahoe, Boulder, Broomfield, Denver, Douglas and Jefferson counties.

Note that the names of projects proposed and under construction may change, as could the number of units proposed prior to the actual start of construction.

Information provided in this report is obtained from published sources such as YardiMatrix, the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, the Home Builders Association of Metro Denver and the AAMD Apartment Vacancy and Rental Survey and from local government agencies. We also monitor building permits, rezoning applications, planning board agendas and minutes and concept and site plan submissions on a monthly basis, often following up through conversations with developers and city and county planners.

James Real Estate Services, Inc. also conducts independent field research, including quarterly visits to all apartment projects that are currently under construction or proposed to determine their actual status. We do not depend on building permits and certificates of occupancy alone since conducting actual site research is much more accurate.

James Real Estate Services, Inc. makes every attempt to ensure accuracy but information cannot be guaranteed. Comments, suggestions and any corrections should be directed to Eric Karnes, JRES Director of Market Research and editor of the Apartment Perspective, at 303/316-6766 or ekarnes@jres.com.

The Apartment Perspective is copyright 2017 by James Real Estate Services, Inc. All rights are reserved. Reuse is permitted with attribution.

Apartment Projects Currently Under Construction

The following projects were under construction in metro Denver as of December 31, 2015 and are sorted by county:

Adams County

  • Alto, 70 units of affordable housing by the Adams County Housing Authority at 7120 Grove Street near the Westminster RTD commuter rail station.
  • Belle Creek Commons, 177 units being developed in four individual sections by Chartered Development Corporation on Belle Creek Boulevard at East 105th Place and East 108th Avenue in Commerce City. The initial phase of 41 units was completed in the 4th Quarter of 2016 and the second phase of 46 units in the 1st Quarter of 2017, leaving 90 units currently under construction..
  • Bonaventure Senior Living, 71 units of independent senior apartments at the southeast corner of Washington Street and Washington Center Parkway in Thornton by Bonaventure Senior Living.
  • Crescent Park 1200, 320 units by Crescent Communities at the northeast corner of West 116th Avenue and Pecos Street in Westmintser.
  • Elements @ Prairie Center, 288 units by Commonwealth Group at the southeast corner of South 27th Avenue and Eagle Boulevard in south Brighton.

Arapahoe County

  • Acoma Lofts, 111 units of affordable housing at 3400 South Acoma Street in downtown Englewood by Medici Communities.
  • AMLI Dry Creek, 257 units by AMLI Residential at 7441 South Clinton Street in unincorporated Arapahoe County near the RTD Dry Creek light rail station.
  • AMLI Littleton Village, 364 units by AMLI Residential at the northwest corner of East Dry Creek Road and South Logan Street in Littleton. The project is located within the redevelopment site of the former Marathon Oil research campus.
  • Edge Pointe Phase II, 177 units of affordable housing by Solvera Developers at 12025 East 13th Avenue at Peoria Street in Aurora, just south of East Colfax Avenue.
  • Elevate, 285 units by Wolff Company at 7338 South Havana Street in Centennial, also near the RTD Dry Creek light rail station.
  • Foundry, 70 units of housing for low and moderate income residents at 601 West Bates Avenue in Englewood by SW Development Group.
  • Forum @ Fitzsimons, 397 units at 13650 East Colfax Avenue in Aurora by Catalina Development Company. The project is across East Colfax Avenue from the Fitzsimons medical campus and adjacent to a station on RTD’s light rail line along I-225.
  • Glenn, 306 units by the Opus Group at 9506 East Mineral Avenue in Centennial. The apartments are part of the planned Jones District mixed-use development near RTD’s East Dry Creek Road light rail station.
  • Grove Littleton, 160 units of independent senior housing by Zocalo Community Development at 2100 West Littleton Boulevard in downtown Littleton.
  • Iliff Station, 424 units at 2602 South Anaheim Street in Aurora by SteelWave LLC. As the name implies, the project is close to the RTD East Iliff Avenue light rail station.
  • Malbec @ Vallagio, 232 units by JKS/PAK LLC at the northwest corner of West Inverness Drive and Spring Green Drive in unincorporated Arapahoe County. The units are being marketed as “rental condominiums”.
  • Parkside Village, 130 units of independent senior housing at the northeast corner of South Parker Road and East Crestline Drive in south Aurora by Resort Lifestyle Communities.
  • Willow Point. 115 rental townhouses at 8500 East Mississippi Avenue in west Aurora by Willowmiss Development.

Boulder County

  • Centennial Park, 140 units at the southwest corner of Pace Street and Mountain View Avenue in east Longmont by Summit Management Group.
  • Chrisman, 114 units of affordable housing at 550 Chrisman Drive in north Longmont by Solvera Advisors LLC.
  • Copper Peak, 240 units at 10600 Park Ridge Avenue near US-287 in north Longmont by Inland Group.
  • DeLo, 130 units on Griffith Street west of Courtesy Road in east Louisville by Risk Management Consulting Services.
  • Kestrel, 191 affordable senior and workforce housing units by the Boulder County Housing Authority at 245 North 96th Street in northeast Louisville.
  • Renaissance Village, 276 units by Actis LLC at the southwest corner of Airport Road and Clover Basin Drive in southwest Longmont.
  • Sandstone Vistas, 240 units by M. Timm Development on Zlaten Drive east of County Line Road in east Longmont.
  • Springs @ Sandstone Ranch, 240 units on Zlaten Drive east of County Line Road by Continental Properties, adjacent to Sandstone Vistas.
  • Watermark at Harvest Junction, 276 units by Watermark Residential at 766 South Martin Street in southeast Longmont, just south of East Ken Pratt Boulevard.

Broomfield County

  • Cityscape @ The Views, 292 units by Embrey Partners at the southeast corner of Ridge Parkway and West 120th Avenue near the Rocky Mountain Metro Airport.
  • Mountain View, 216 units by Mountain View Palisades Park LLC at the southwest corner of West 169th Avenue and Huron Street, near the Colorado Highway 7 interchange with I-25.

Denver County

  • 1515 Flats, 82 units by Leon Cisneros at 4601 West Colfax Avenue in the Denver West submarket.
  • 1570-1578 Humboldt Street, 100 “micro” units by Pando Holdings in the Denver Central suvbmarket.
  • 1707 & 1777 Chestnut Place, two towers containing 511 units by Shorenstein Properties in the Central Platte Valley near Denver Union Station.
  • 21st & Welton, 329 units by Lennar Multifamily at 2100 Welton Street in the Denver Central submarket.
  • 2401 Blake Street. 286 units by Lennar Multifamily in the Ballpark neighborhood of the Denver Central submarket.
  • 2525 Eliot Street, 72 units in the Jefferson Park neighborhood in the Denver Central submarket by David Benton.
  • 5280 Senior Residences, 99 units of affordable independent senior housing by the Burgwyn Company at 1625 Pennsylvania Street in the Denver Central submarket.
  • 950 Colorado Boulevard, 275 units by Continuum Partners in the Denver East submarket. This building is part of the mixed-use redevelopment of the former University of Colorado medical center.
  • Alexan Arapahoe Square, 355 units at 2200 Welton Street in the Denver Central submarket by Trammell Crow Residential.
  • Alexan Cherry Creek, 164 units by Trammell Crow Residential at 55 Cook Street in the Cherry Creek East neighborhood in the Denver Central submarket.
  • Alexan LoHi, 106 units at 3217 Tejon Street in the Denver Central submarket by Trammell Crow Residential.
  • Alexan 20th Street Station, 358 units by Trammell Crow Residential at 2058 California Street in the Denver Central submarket.
  • Alexan Uptown, 372 units by Trammell Crow Residential at 1935 Logan Street in the Denver Central submarket.
  • Alexan West Highlands, 322 units by Trammell Crow Residential at 3550 West 38th Avenue in the Highlands neighborhood in the Denver West submarket.
  • AMLI Riverfront Green, 304 units at 1750 Little Raven Street in the Denver Central submarket by AMLI Residential.
  • Ascend Union Station, 162 units at 1959 Wewatta Street in the Denver Central submarket by Greystar Residential.
  • Ash Street, 112 units of affordable housing by Mile High Development in the Denver East submarket. The project is part of the redevelopment of the former University of Colorado hospital site on Colorado Boulevard.
  • Asher @ Platt Park, 403 units by Carmel Partners at 201 East Mississippi Avenue in the Denver South submarket. The project occupies one of the last parcels available in the redevelopment of the former Gates Rubber property east of South Broadway. A much larger tract west of South Broadway has been approved for a transit-oriented mixed-use development but no specific projects have been announced. .
  • Ashley Union Station, 107 units of affordable apartments by Integral Development at 1975 18th Street in the Denver Central submarket near Denver Union Station.
  • Atelier @ University Park, 252 units at 2450 South University Boulevard by Tessler Developments near the University of Denver campus in the Denver South submarket.
  • Centric LoHi, 302 units on the former site of the United Way building at 2505 18th Street in the LoHi neighborhood of the Denver Central submarket by Southern Land Company of Nashville.
  • Confluence, 288 units at 2166 15th Street in the Denver Central submarket by PM Realty Group. At 34 floors Confluence will be one of Denver’s tallest residential buildings. As its name indicates, the building sits at the confluence of the South Platte River and Cherry Creek adjacent to Confluence Park on the western edge of downtown. This was the site of the founding of Denver as a mining camp in 1858.
  • Country Club Towers 2 & 3, two connected 30-story buildings by Broe Group at 15 South Downing Street in the Denver Central submarket with a total of 558 units.
  • Del Corazon, 197 units of affordable housing by St. Charles Town Company at 4406 Morrison Road in the Denver West submarket. The apartments are located on both sides of Morrison Road and replace a derelict mobile home park.
  • Emerson Place, 84 units by Allante Properties at 1833 Emerson Street in the Denver Central submarket.
  • Encore Evans Station, 235 units at 1805 South Bannock Street by Encore Multi-Family LLC in the Denver South submarket, several blocks from the RTD West Evans Avenue light rail station.
  • Gables Cherry Creek Phase II, 140 units by Gables Residential at 360 South Monroe Street in the Denver Central submarket.
  • Greystar Speer Boulevard, 302 units by Greystar Residential at the northwest corner of Speer Boulevard and Bannock Street in the Denver Central submarket.
  • Hanover Broadway Station, 303 units at the northeast corner of South Broadway and East Arizona Avenue in the Denver South submarket by The Hanover Company.
  • Infinity @ LoHi, 273 units by Richman Ascension Development at 2211 West 27th Avenue in the Denver Central submarket.
  • Lydian, 129 units at 2560 Welton Street in the Denver Central submarket by Confluence Development and Palisades Properties.
  • Lynd @ Industry, 277 units at 3063 Brighton Boulevard in the Denver Central submarket by the Lynd Company. The apartment building is adjacent to an adaptive reuse of a former industrial building into co-working space.
  • Mariposa Phase VII-A with 48 units. This is an additional phase of the Denver Housing Authority’s ongoing redevelopment of a former public housing project near the RTD Osage Street light rail station and La Alma-Lincoln Park south of West 11th
  • Meadows @ Montbello, 86 units of low and moderate income housing by the Volunteers of America at 4355 Carson Street in the Denver East submarket.
  • Mint Town Center, 399 units by Forest City in the block bounded by Roslyn and Syracuse streets, East Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard and East 29th Place in the Stapleton neighborhood in the Denver East submarket.
  • Modera Observatory Park East, 136 units by Mill Creek Residential Trust at 1900 South Josephine Street in the Denver South submarket.
  • Modera Observatory Park West, 139 units by Mill Creek Residential Trust at 1911 South Josephine Street.
  • Modera River North Arts, 182 units at 2840 Blake Street in the Denver Central submarket by Mill Creek Residential Trust.
  • Modera River North, 362 units by Mill Creek Residential Trust at 2840 Broadway in the RiNo neighborhood in the Denver Central submarket.
  • Muse, 120 units by the Hill Companies at 2262 South University Boulevard in the Denver South submarket, across from the University of Denver campus.
  • Outlook DTC, 242 units by Evergreen Development at 5031 South Ulster Street in the Denver South submarket.
  • Park 17, 190 units by the Lynd Company at 1655 Lafayette Street in the Denver Central submarket.
  • Parkside, 161 units at 1880 Little Raven Street in the Denver Central submarket by Holland Partner Group.
  • Quincy, 359 units by Shea Properties in the Denver Central submarket as part of a downtown residential and commercial mixed use project at 1776 Curtis Street between 17th and 18th
  • Renaissance Downtown Lofts, 101 units of affordable housing at 2075 Broadway in the Denver Central submarket by the Colorado Coalition for the Homeless.
  • Sable Ridge Phase II, 60 unit expansion of the affordable community at 4203 Chambers Road in the Denver East submarket by Sable Ridge Development.
  • Saint Francis, 50 units of affordable apartments by the Saint Francis Center at 1450 Washington Street in the Denver Central submarket.
  • Sanderson, 60 units of affordable apartments at 1601 South Federal Boulevard in the Denver West submarket by the Mental Health Center of Denver.
  • SOVA, 211 units by McWhinney at 1901 Grant Street in the Denver Central submarket.
  • Paul Collection, 76 units at 210 St. Paul Street and 84 units at 255 St. Paul Street by BMC Investment in the Cherry Creek North neighborhood of the Denver Central submarket.
  • Tennyson Place, 62 units by Allante Properties at the southwest corner of West 39th Avenue and Tennyson Street in the Denver West submarket.
  • TriVista on Speer, 322 units at 1350 Speer Boulevard in the Denver Central submarket by Legacy Partners.
  • Union Denver, 580 units at 1777 Wewatta Street near Denver Union Station in the Denver Central submarket by Holland Partner Group. This full-block project was initially named 17W and then Pivot Denver. It will have a flagship Whole Foods market on the ground floor.
  • Vue @ Mile High, 382 units by Embrey Partners at 3200 West Colfax Avenue in the Denver West submarket.
  • Watermark @ Green Valley Ranch, 264 units by Watermark Residential at the northwest corner of Tower Road and Elmendorf Drive in the Denver East submarket.
  • Westwood Crossing, 98 units of affordable housing by McDermott Properties at 3301 West Nevada Place in the Denver West submarket.
  • Wildgrass, 336 units at 16433 East 49th Avenue in the Denver East submarket by Lennar Multifamily, just north of Green Valley Ranch Boulevard.
  • X at Sloan’s Lake, 58 first phase units at 1552 Xavier Street in the Denver West submarket by Peak Development Group and Slipstream Properties. A second adjacent phase in the structure of a former office building started in the 1st Quarter of 217 with another 46 units.
  • Yale Street Station, 112 units by Jordan Permutter & Company at 5101 East Yale Circle near the RTD East Yale Avenue light rail station.
  • York on City Park, 212 units by Shea Properties at 1781 York Street in the Denver Central submarket. As the name indicates, it is across York Street from City Park.

 

Douglas County

  • Alpine Crossing, 56 units by Neibur Development at 751 West Wolfensberger Road in west Castle Rock.
  • Broadstone Vantage Point, 306 units by Alliance Residential Company at the northeast corner of South Parker Road and East Cottonwood Drive in Parker.
  • Camden Lincoln Station, 267 units by Camden Property Trust at the northeast corner of Park Meadows Drive and Station Street in Lone Tree. The project is adjacent to the RTD Lincoln Avenue light rail station.
  • Copper Steppe, 264 units by the Inland Group at the northwest corner of Cosmopolitan Circle and South Vienna Street in unincorporated Douglas County, just west of South Chambers Road.
  • Ledges at the Promenade, 312 units by Embrey Partners at the southeast quadrant of the new Castle Rock Parkway and Castlegate Drive in Castle Rock. The project is part of the large mixed-use development by Alberta Development Partners on the west side of I-25 between the Castle Rock Parkway and Meadows Parkway interchanges.
  • Parker Flats, 146 units at 11020 South Pikes Peak Drive in downtown Parker by Klingbeil Capital Management.
  • RidgeGate III, 219 units by Martin Fein Interests at the southwest corner of Chatham Drive and Train Station Circle in Lone Tree. The project is adjacent to the RTD light rail station on the extended southeast line which is currently under construction.
  • Solana Lucent Station, 285 units at 8555 Belle Drive in Highlands Ranch by MKS Residential. As the name indicates, the project is adjacent to a planned future RTD light rail station on the extension of the south line from Mineral Avenue in Littleton.
  • Watermark @ Main Street, a 294 unit second phase by Watermark Residential at 18588 East Main Street in Parker.

 

Jefferson County

  • 40 West, 60 affordable units at 5830 West Colfax Avenue in Lakewood by Archway Housing.
  • Alta Pinehurst, 350 units by Wood Partners at 3950 South Wadsworth Boulevard in south Lakewood.
  • Alvera, 302 units by Confluence Companies at 11700 West 58th Avenue in Arvada.
  • Axis, 453 units by Lennar Multifamily at 6963 West 109th Avenue in Westminster.
  • BelleVue, 256 units at 5108 South Alkire Street near West Bowles Avenue in unincorporated Jefferson County by Embrey Partners.
  • Hidden Lake Homes, 72 units of affordable independent senior housing by the Jefferson County Housing Authority on West 73rd Avenue west of Sheridan Boulevard in Westminster.
  • Hyland Village, 152 units by Garrett Company at the northwest corner of West 96th Avenue and Ames Street, just west of Sheridan Boulevard, in Westminster.
  • Legacy @ Promenade East, 300 units at 6250 Promenade Drive North in Westminster by Legacy Partners.
  • Morningstar Senior Living, 71 units of independent senior housing as part of a larger senior community at 17351 West 64th Avenue in west Arvada by Morningstar Senior Living.
  • Oak Street Station, 291 units at 1420 Oak Street in Lakewood by Beaver 1420 LLC. The project is located across the street from RTD’s Oak Street light rail station.
  • Solana Olde Town Station, 352 units at 6855 West 56th Avenue near downtown Arvada by MKS Residential. The RTD Olde Town commuter rail station, set to open this year, is several blocks to the west across the Wadsworth Bypass.
  • South Union, 343 units by Lennar Multifamily at 85 South Union Boulevard in west Lakewood.
  • Vanguard Green Gables, 300 units at the mixed-use redevelopment of the former Green Gables golf course in the southeast quadrant of West Jewell Avenue and South Wadsworth Boulevard by Covington Realty Partners.
  • West Line Flats, 155 units by Momentum Development at 7900 West 14th Avenue in Lakewood. The transit-oriented development is near RTD’s Lamar Street light rail station.

The 112 projects under construction at the end of the 1st quarter of 2017 contain a total of 25,225 units.

 

Apartment Projects Proposed

The following projects were proposed in metro Denver as of March 31, 2017 and are sorted by county. They may not all be built, and others will be announced and included in our subsequent quarterly Apartment Perspectives. The properties listed are those that are the most likely to begin construction during the next twelve months.

We obtain information on proposed projects from published media reports and from rezoning requests and concept plans or site plans filed with municipal and county planning agencies in metro Denver. Some proposed projects may be dropped and others may have name changes prior to or during construction. The number of units may also change upon permitting.

Adams County

  • Baker, 142 units by Delwest Capital at 3555 West 64th Avenue in unincorporated Adams County, just east of Arvada.
  • Cannery Lofts, 99 units by Garrison Development Company at 224 North Main Street in downtown Brighton.
  • Christine Place, 96 units at the southeast corner of 19th Avenue and Jennifer Court in north Brighton by William Teater.
  • Midtowne @ Clear Creek, 270 units at the southeast corner of West 68th Avenue and Pecos Street in unincorporated Adams County by Brookfield Residential. Plans for Midtowne @ Clear Creek are for a mix of for-sale single family units, apartments and a small amount of retail space.
  • Peoria Crossing Phase 1, 82 affordable units by the Aurora Housing Authority in the initial phase at 3002 Peoria Street. The site is several blocks south of RTD’s combined commuter and light rail Peoria Crossing station and north of the Fitzsimons medical campus.
  • Stanley Market, 172 units by Westfield Company at 9511 East 23rd Avenue in northwest Aurora. The apartments would be built adjacent to the retail center developed in the building of the former Stanley Aviation manufacturing plant.
  • Vistas @ Panorama Pointe, 69 units of independent senior housing at West 83rd Way and Alcott Street in Westminster by MEM Westminster Property LLP.
  • Windmill Ranch, 96 units by Hendricks Communities at the southwest corner of South 8th Avenue and Bromley Lane in south Brighton.

Arapahoe County

  • Alameda View, 116 affordable units by Gardner Capital at 15501 East Alameda Parkway in Aurora.
  • AMLI Wheatlands, 338 units by AMLI Residential at the northeast corner of Smoky Hill Road and East Ider Street in far southeast Aurora.
  • Citadel on Colfax, 90 units of affordable housing for military veterans at the southeast corner of East Colfax Avenue and Sable Boulevard by Northstar Commercial Partners.
  • Echelon @ Cornerstone, 140 units by Garrett Companies at 15920 East Briarwood Circle in southwest Aurora.
  • Littleton Crossing, 63 units of affordable housing at 5591 South Nevada Street near downtown Littleton by Summit Housing Group.
  • Point @ 9 Mile Station, 67 units of affordable housing at 3186 South Parker Road in Aurora by Mile High Development and Koelbel & Company.
  • Point @ 9 Mile Station, redevelopment of the derelict Regatta Plaza shopping center at 3186 South Parker Road in Aurora including 201 market rate apartments. The Point @ 9 Mile Station is part of the redevelopment by Mile High Development and Koelbel & Company, across Parker Road from RTD’s 9 Mile light rail and bus station. .
  • Shadowridge @ Southlands Phase II, 50 unit addition at 24750 East Applewood Drive in southeast Aurora by JRK Southlands APO LLC.
  • Skymark, a 190 unit project by Delwest Capital. The site is split evenly by the Arapahoe and Denver county boundaries, so 95 units are proposed for 1291 South Parker Road in unincorporated Arapahoe County and the remainder listed under Denver County.
  • Springs @ Eagle Bend, 280 units at the northeast corner of Gartrell Road and Aurora Parkway in south Aurora by Continental Properties.
  • Village @ Westerly Creek Phase III, 74 units of affordable housing by the Aurora Housing Authority at 850 South Ironton Street in Aurora.

Boulder County

  • 9295 Nelson Road, 256 units by Nova Investments in west Longmont. Annexation of the site was recently approved, as was a concept plan. The development will likely have a name other than the street address.
  • Academy @ Mapleton Hill. 150 units of independent senior housing at 311 Mapleton Avenue in west Boulder by Mapleton Hill Investment Group. The project would be incorporated into the historic former Mapleton Hill hospital and sanitarium.
  • Armory, 182 units at 4750 Broadway in north Boulder by Armory Land Investors LLC. The project would be located on the site of a closed former Colorado National Guard facility.
  • Copper Ranch, 216 units by Inland Group at 3040 County Line Road Northeast in Erie.
  • Diagonal Crossing, 357 units by Trammell Crow Residential at the Diagonal Highway and Independence Road in northeast Boulder. A previous concept involving more office space was rejected by the City of Boulder.
  • Eastpointe, the demolition of the existing apartment property of that name at 1550 Eisenhower Drive in east Boulder and the construction of 236 new units by AIMCO.
  • Fall River, 60 units of affordable housing at 321 Homestead Parkway in north Longmont by the Longmont Housing Authority.
  • Lafayette City Center, 208 units by Rubicon Development LLC at the southeast corner of City Center Circle and South Public Road in downtown Lafayette.
  • Reve, 244 units at 2100 30th Street in east Boulder by Southern Land Company as part of a large mixed-use development. The site is near the RTD bus rapid transit station on Pearl Street and across 30th Street from the new Google office complex.
  • Rock Creek Zaharias, 258 units by SteelWave LLC in the southeast quadrant of 88th Street and US-36 in Superior.
  • Shadowgrass, 256 units by Brinkman Partners at the southwest corner of 17th Avenue and County Line Road in east Longmont.
  • South Main Station, 315 units at 150 Main Street in Longmont by Pathfinder Partners. The apartments would be part of the mixed-use redevelopment of the former Butterball poultry processing plant on the south edge of downtown Longmont. Long term plans by RTD call for a station on the extension of the northwest commuter rail line to be built near the site. The northwest line, which began operations in 2016, currently terminates at Westminster. It is ultimately planned to serve Broomfield, Louisville and Boulder in addition to Longmont once funding is identified.
  • SPARK, a mixed use development at 3390 Valmont Road in east central Boulder to be developed by Element Properties. Three separate apartment buildings will be included in the project, for a total of 203 rental units. SPARK will also include office and retail space and for-sale residences, all developed on the site of the former Sutherland Lumber Company.
  • Velo Park, 70 units by Airport Adventures LLC at 3289 Airport Road in east Boulder, adjacent to Valmont Park and Boulder Municipal Airport.

Broomfield County

  • Eldorado Interlocken, 311 units by AG Spanos Company at the southwest corner of Eldorado and Interlocken boulevards in the Interlocken Business Park.
  • Flatiron Marketplace, the redevelopment of the vacant shopping center at the southwest quadrant of East Flatiron Crossing Drive and US-36. Provident Realty Advisors plans 324 units as part of a mixed-use project.
  • Retreat @ The Flatirons Phase II, 288 units by Etkin Johnson Group at 13700 Via Varra in the Broomfield Corporate Center on Northwest Parkway.
  • Summit Green, 198 units at 453 Summit Boulevard by Davis Development. A previous proposal for the site was dropped and the land was subsequently acquired by Davis Development.

Denver County

  • 1000 Albion Street, 323 units in the Denver East submarket by Continuum Partners as part of the continuing redevelopment of the former University of Colorado Medical Center site. .
  • 1256 Delaware Street, 176 units in the Denver Central submarket by Argyle Residential.
  • 15th & Wewatta Streets, 90 “micro” units by Nichols Partnership in the Denver Central submarket.
  • 17th Avenue & Fillmore Street, 215 units at the southwest corner of East 17th Avenue and Fillmore Street in the Denver Central submarket by Picern Group.
  • 1811 Lincoln Street. 200 units of affordable housing by Zocalo Community Development and the Emily Griffith Center in the Denver Central submarket.
  • 2154 South Colorado Boulevard, 325 units by Alliance Residential in the Denver South submarket. If developed the project will likely be given a name.
  • 2501 West 26th Avenue, 734 units in the Jefferson Park neighborhood in the Denver Central submarket by Tessler Developments.
  • 2680 18th Street, 100 units by Corum Real Estate Group in the LoHi neighborhood of the Denver Central submarket. The project would replace a small office building on the site.
  • 3609 Wynkoop, 86 units by McWhinney at 3609 Wynkoop Street in the RiNo neighborhood in the Denver North submarket.
  • 538 East 17th Avenue, 315 units by Southern Land Company on the site of the Uptown Tavern in the Denver Central submarket. The popular restaurant and bar would return as a tenant in the existing historic building, which will be incorporated into the overall plans due to an agreement with neighbors and Historic Denver.
  • 600 Park Avenue, 238 units by Alsation Land Company in the Arapahoe Square neighborhood in the Denver Central submarket, on the southwest corner of Welton Street.  
  • 7th & Grant, 178 units by Dinerstein Companies at 682 Grant Street in the Denver Central submarket.
  • 901 Grant Street, 201 units by Richman Ascension Group in the Denver Central submarket.
  • Alexan Market Street, 305 units by Trammell Crow Residential on Market Street between 18th and 19th streets in the Denver Central submarket.
  • AMICK, 58 affordable units at 1029 Santa Fe Drive in the Denver Central submarket by Burgwyn Company.
  • AMLI Denargo Market, 300 units by AMLI Residential at 3325 Denargo Street in the Denver Central submarket. The project will be another apartment community developed on the site of the former Denargo wholesale food market west of Brighton Boulevard.
  • Arroyo Village, 130 units of affordable housing at 1290 King Street in the Denver West submarket by Rocky Mountain Communities. The project is adjacent to the RTD Knox Court light rail station on the west line.
  • ArtWay North, 351 units of mixed income housing by Integral Development Group at 4175 Albion Street near RTD’s North Colorado commuter rail station in the Denver East submarket.
  • Aster Conservatory Green Phase II, 265 units by Forest City Enterprises at East 47th Avenue and Yosemite Street in the Stapleton North neighborhood in the Denver East submarket.
  • Atlantis, 63 units of affordable housing by the Atlantis Community Foundation at 201 South Cherokee Street in the Denver Central submarket.
  • Boulevard One, 345 units by Embrey Partners at 99 Quebec Street in the Denver East submarket. Boulevard One is part of the redevelopment of the former Lowry Air Force Base.
  • Boulevard One Senior Housing, 72 units of affordable senior apartments by the Denver Housing Authority at East Archer Place and South Niagara Street in the Boulevard One section of Lowry.
  • Brandon Flats, 104 units of affordable housing at 1555 Xavier Street in the Denver West submarket by Volunteers of America National Services.
  • Brickstone, 156 units by SEEC Enterprises LLC at the southwest corner of East 56th Avenue and Tower Road in the Denver East submarket.
  • Broadstone Lowry, 368 units by Alliance Residential at 8505 Lowry Boulevard in the Denver East submarket. The new project would replace a former residential building once used by US Air Force personnel when Lowry was a military base.
  • Broadstone Uptown, 106 units by Alliance Residential at 1780 Marion Street in the Denver Central submarket.
  • Camden RiNo, 232 units by Camden Property Trust at 3200 Walnut Street in the RiNo neighborhood in the Denver North submarket.
  • Central Park Station, 258 units by Forest City Enterprises at the northwest corner of East 36th Avenue and Central Park Boulevard in the Stapleton neighborhood in the Denver East submarket. The site is several blocks from RTD A Line commuter rail station.
  • Champa Lofts, 60 “micro” apartment units at 2250 Champa Street in the Denver Central submarket by iUnit.
  • Colorado Center, 269 units in the Colorado Center mixed-use development at 2000 South Colorado Boulevard in the Denver South submarket by Lincoln Property Company. LPC is also adding another office tower and additional retail space. RTD’s Colorado Center light rail station is adjacent.
  • Croft, a 24 unit addition to the existing property at 7200 East Evans Avenue in the Denver South submarket by Red Tail Acquisitions.
  • DCC, 303 units by Titan Investments at 4700 South Syracuse Street in the Denver South submarket. The site is currently used for parking adjacent to a highrise office building in the Denver Tech Center.
  • DTC Gateway, 150 units at 4300 South Monaco Street in the Denver South submarket by Shea Properties.
  • East 45th, 280 units by the AG Spanos Companies at the southwest corner of East 45th Avenue and Tower Road in the Denver East submarket.
  • East Ridge Crossing, 252 units at the southwest corner of East 60th Avenue and Dunkirk Street in the Denver East submarket by Dominion Acquisition & Development.
  • First Avenue Hotel, renovation and expansion of a historic hotel at 101 Broadway into 106 units by Zocalo Community Development in the Denver Central submarket.
  • Gables Jackson, 242 units at 351 South Jackson Street in the Denver Central submarket by Gables Residential. The project is also being marketed as the third phase of Gables Cherry Creek and may have a change in name.
  • Jefferson View, 248 units by Argyle Interests LLC at 2450 Alcott Street in the Denver Central submarket.
  • Laradon Homes, 91 units of affordable housing at 5102 Broadway in the Denver North submarket by Gorman & Company.
  • Market Station, 197 units by Continuum Partners at the southwest corner of 17th and Market streets in the Denver Central submarket as part of the redevelopment of the former RTD Market Street bus station. The bus station was closed and sold by the City & County of Denver for redevelopment after it was relocated to Denver Union Station.
  • Modera Capitol Hill, 197 units by Mill Creek Residential Trust at East 12th Avenue and Grant Street in the Denver Central submarket. An office building on the site has been demolished.
  • Modera LoHi, 129 units by Mill Creek Residential Trust on the northeast side of 16th Street between Boulder and Central streets. The site was originally announced as a hotel.
  • Overture 9CO, 216 units by Greystar Development at East 9th Avenue and Ash Street in the Denver East submarket in the redevelopment of the former University of Colorado hospital campus.
  • PDG Design District, 350 units at 363 South Broadway by Price Development Group. The project, adjacent to the RTD Alameda Avenue light rail station, would replace a vacant K-Mart store.
  • Pena Station, 221 units by MGL Partners at East 61st Avenue and Telluride Street in the Denver East submarket. An RTD east commuter rail line station is several blocks to the west.
  • Residence @ Sloan’s Lake, 253 units by Hines at the southwest corner of Quitman Street and West 17th Avenue in the Denver West submarket. The project would be part of the redevelopment of the former St. Anthony’s Hospital property south of Sloan’s Lake Park.
  • Route 40, 180 units at 1475 Downing Street in the Denver Central submarket by Consolidated Investment Group. Construction has been delayed due to public concerns about the demolition of a historic retail and apartment building on part of the site.
  • Sheridan Station West, 133 units by Koelbel & Company on West 11th Avenue at Ames Street in the Denver West submarket, adjacent to the RTD West light rail line station.
  • Silos, 160 units by Zeppelin Development at 3755 Ringsby Court in the Taxi mixed-use development west of the South Platte River in the Denver Central submarket.
  • Skymark, 95 units at 1301 South Ulster Street in the Denver East submarket by DelWest Capital. Note that an additional 95 units of this project will be located in Arapahoe County and are included in the list of proposed projects in that county.
  • Stadium Flats, 56 units by Pomeray Group at 1900 Federal Boulevard in the Denver Central submarket, adjacent to Mile High Stadium.
  • Taxi, 314 units in the mixed-use development of the same name at 2101 31st Street in the RiNo neighborhood by Zeppelin Development.
  • Vida @ St. Anthony’s, 176 units of affordable senior housing by the Denver Housing Authority at 4017 West Colfax Avenue in the Denver West submarket.
  • Viking Park, 113 units by Connell Viking Park at 2816 West 29th Avenue in the Denver Central submarket.
  • Wellington, 321 units by Carmel Partners at 1408 West Colfax Avenue in the Denver Central submarket, across from the Auraria higher education campus and adjacent to an RTD light rail station.

Douglas County

  • Depot @ Twenty Mile, 200 units by NexGen Properties at the northwest corner of Pine Lane and Twenty Mile Road in Parker.
  • Echelon @ The Meadows, 240 units by Garrett Company on Meadows Boulevard at Coriander Street in Castle Rock.
  • PDG Pine Bluffs, 255 units by Price Development Group at the northeast corner of Tallman Drive and South Parker Road in Parker. The name may change, although Price Development usually uses PDG as a brand.
  • Riverwalk, 228 units by CD-Wilcox/Bates Leasing on Wilcox Street south of 2nd Street in downtown Castle Rock.
  • Stroh Ranch, 204 units by Dominium Development at the southeast corner of J. Morgan Boulevard and Nate Drive in Parker.

Jefferson County

  • 16 Hoyt, 64 units by Hoyt 16 LLC at 1600 Hoyt Street in Lakewood, a block north of West Colfax Avenue.
  • Academy Park Avere Senior Living, 287 units at 7205 West Quincy Avenue east of South Wadsworth Boulevard in Lakewood by Avere Senior Living.
  • Arvada Ridge Station, 296 units by Embrey Partners adjacent to the RTD commuter rail station at the northwest corner of Ridge Road and Kipling Parkway in Arvada. The rail line begins operation later this year.
  • Corners, 230 units by Quadrant Properties as part of a mixed-use development at the southwest corner of West 38th Avenue and Wadsworth Boulevard in Wheat Ridge.
  • Edgewater Village, 100 units by Trinity Development at the northeast corner of Depew Street and West 20th Avenue on the site of a former retail center in downtown Edgewater.
  • El Rancho Flats, 54 units by the Jefferson County Housing Authority at 1055 El Rancho Road in El Rancho.
  • Fifty Eight Hundred, 152 affordable units of new construction and conversion of a vacant office building at 5800 West Alameda Avenue in Lakewood by Metro West Housing Solutions.
  • Flats @ Two Creeks, 78 units of affordable housing by Archway Investment Corporation at 1410 Gray Street in Lakewood.
  • Grand Monarch, 229 units of senior housing at 11001 West 15th Place in Lakewood by Avenida Senior Living.
  • Hance Ranch, 230 units at the southwest corner of West 52nd Avenue and Tabor Street adjacent to the Ward Avenue RTD commuter rail station in Wheat Ridge by HRE Development LLC.
  • Indy Street Flats. 115 units of affordable housing by Metro West Housing Solutions at 1440 Independence Street in Lakewood.
  • Lakewood Gateway, 84 units of independent senior housing at the southeast corner of West 26th Avenue and Wadsworth Boulevard in Lakewood by Hendricks Communities.
  • Lakewood Station, 143 units at 1320 Everett Court in Lakewood, replacing an older apartment property, by Herman & Kittle Properties.
  • NewStar Golden, 110 units of independent senior housing at 20001 Golden Gate Canyon Road at Colorado Highway 93 in northwest Golden by Senior Living Logic LLC.
  • Olde Town Residences, 248 units at West 56th Avenue and Vance Street by Trammell Crow Company adjacent to RTD’s Olde Town commuter rail station.
  • Ralston Creek North, 300 units by Loftus Properties at the northeast corner of Ralston Road and Independence Street in Arvada. The apartments are part of a two-phased urban renewal project that will also include new retail space.
  • Skye Point, 130 units of senior housing at the northeast corner of West Bowles Avenue and South Taft Street in unincorporated Jefferson County by Resort Lifestyle Communities.
  • Westglenn, 285 units at the northeast corner of West 90th Avenue and Wadsworth Boulevard in Westminster. The project by HD Westminster LLC is part of a potential redevelopment of a shopping center.
  • Westminster Downtown, 282 units near the northwest corner of West 88th Avenue and Sheridan Boulevard by Sherman Associates. The project would be part of the initial phase of the redevelopment of the former Westminster Mall site into a mixed-use community seen by Westminster leaders as a true downtown for the city.

The 115 projects proposed at the end of the 1st quarter of 2017 and possibly slated to begin construction during the next twelve months contain a total of 22,727 units.

Bill James is a true professional, and a credit to the real estate industry. Bill has served in many volunteer roles over the years, and his commitment to the task has been his hallmark.

- Rod Brown