Condo developers buy Cap Hill garage

Condo developers have taken over a Capitol Hill garage. Photo by Burl Rolett.

Condo developers have taken over a Capitol Hill garage. Photo by Burl Rolett.

A 65-year-old auto shop is pulling out of Capitol Hill to make way for condos.

Highlands-based Generation Development bought the Penn Garage building at 1300 Ogden St. this month with plans to build up to five floors of condos around the single-story, red brick building.

“The goal right now is to try to keep that existing structure and put a building above it,” said Chris Lonigro, a managing partner with Generation Development. “It’s a neat structure and we were able to figure out a way to reuse it, and I think it will make for a pretty special project.”

Generation Development bought the 15,000-square-foot garage for $2 million in a deal that closed Jan. 2. Lonigro said it’s still early on in the planning process but estimated construction would begin this fall.

If the build goes as planned, Lonigro said, the new condo building would be ready about a year later.

Zoning allows for a five-story condo building on the property, and Lonigro said he would likely build up to that limit. He’s aiming for a little less than 30 total units.

Lonigro said the building will have a mix of one-, two- and three-bedroom condos.

Generation Development doesn’t have a final construction budget nailed down or target asking rates for the finished condos, but Lonigro said he sees a wide range of people looking to move into Capitol Hill.

“It’s kind of all over the board,” he said. “You don’t see too many families moving into the two-bedroom units, but you may see a lot of younger buyers or someone looking to downsize.”

Chicago-based Range Design is the architect on the project. The same firm designed Generation Development’s LoHi Flats at 2640 North Central Court and its Clay\28th project at 2752 Clay St.

Penn Garage has been in business since 1949 and moved over to the garage at 13th Avenue and Ogden Street in 1997. The shop is motoring out of that space, but the company is not closing up shop.

Penn Garage owner Terry Harnish said he’s looking for something smaller. He hasn’t yet settled on a final location but said he’s closing in on a property on Evans Street.

Harnish said he hopes to have a deal closed shortly to complete a 1031 Exchange. The 1031 Exchange is an IRS provision that lets an investor postpone paying capital gains taxes by using the proceeds from a sale to buy another property shortly after the first deal closes.

Harnish bought his current auto shop in 1998 for $350,000, county records show. He said he sold 1300 Ogden St. to get out from under a mortgage on the building and a high property tax bill.

“The property taxes have been killing me,” he said. “But I was able to sell it for enough to pay everything off, and we’ll look for a space that’s a little smaller, a little more manageable.”

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Mike Lane
Mike Lane
6 years ago

Wow! This looks like a really cool project. I love the idea of keeping the existing structure to maintain the historic charm!

Mrs. Harnish
Mrs. Harnish
6 years ago

* Penn Garage has been serving the Denver Community since 1947 (not 1949.)

* Penn Garage is OPEN for Business as usual and will Formally Announce it’s Move Date and New Address/Location once our new Building has been Confirmed, Secured and Finalized.

* We WILL NOT be Moving to Evans as incorrectly written in this Ad.

* We look forward to continue to serve all your Automotive needs in our New Location!

Penn Garage Owners
Mr. and Mrs, Terry L. Harnish
Tel. (303) 831-7777

4 years ago

Please please pleaseeeee include parking for these condos. I live right next store to the garage, and we only have one parking spot for the 3 of us and the project has already cut into a lot of on street parking, and makes it impossible to find parking late at night. As a female walking in the neighborhood far distances is scary especially with the increasing homeless population in the neighborhood. The last thing we need is more housing, with no parking to take away from whats there.