New hotel to anchor DU transformation

Photo:DU has plans to develop this parcel at South University and Buchtel Avenue. Options under consideration include a hotel, retail, welcome center, and graduate student housing.

The gateway to the University of Denver is going to change dramatically in the next five years. As part of DU’s vision to open up the campus to visitors, the Denver community and students, DU has assembled the parcels (pictured below – red)  necessary to move forward on a major 5-year capital project at the southwest corner of Buchtel and University. The property, bordered by Buchtel Blvd, South University, and Asbury is located to the east of the Ritchie Center, will be redeveloped in Phase II of a 5-year development plan. We have discussed Phase 1 which will include a new career achievement center & global alumni center, student union and new dorm (pictured below – Yellow) and is scheduled to be completed in the next three years. Construction may start as early as summer, 2018.

Site Plan 2017

These capital projects are part of an overall plan called The Denver Advantage. Phase I is being financed by the issuance of bonds instead of self-funding – the preferred option under former Chancellor Dan Ritchie.

Phase II will likely include a much-needed hotel at the corner of Buchtel Boulevard and University Avenue. It has been suggested that it will be operated by an outside hotel operator with a moderately sized 150-160 room facility with a ballroom for large university-wide meetings. A welcome center along with retail and graduate student housing above is an option under consideration as well. Final building design, site layout, and tenants are still under study and recommendations will require final trustee review and approval.

Concurrently, there are ongoing efforts to create a university district with visual queues, transportation, and neighboring retail studies to make the campus more accessible, convenient and visible to visitors, guests and students.