Brooklyn climbing gym plants feet in Denver

The headquarters will move into the Dry Ice Factory building at Walnut. (Burl Rolett)

The headquarters will move into the Dry Ice Factory building at 3320 Walnut St. (Burl Rolett)

With plans for a new gym already in the works, a Brooklyn climbing gym is moving its headquarters to Denver.

New York-based Brooklyn Boulders is moving its headquarters to a 2,600-square-foot office at the Dry Ice Factory building on Walnut Street in RiNo. The move comes after about a year of conversations between the company and state officials.

“Brooklyn Boulders has a footprint around the country and is growing very rapidly,” said Luis Benitez, head of Colorado’s Outdoor Recreation Industry Office. “And the more time they spent out here, the more they realized they could access the millennial talent here and make a hub for their expansion farther westward.”

Brooklyn Boulders is a climbing gym that also builds coworking space and common gathering space into each of its gyms. Currently based in New York, Brooklyn Boulders has gyms in Brooklyn, Queens, Boston and Chicago.

The new Brooklyn Boulders headquarters will be at an office space at 3320 Walnut St. Kirsty Cameron and Rick Door of Cresa Denver represented the climbing company in its Denver office space search. The company is also looking at a new gym a couple blocks over in RiNo, as BusinessDen reported earlier this year.

Benitez said he got in touch with Brooklyn Boulders CEO Lance Pinn last summer through a mutual friend. Benitez, who is in charge of luring outdoor and recreation business to Colorado, said he targeted the indoor climbing industry shortly after taking on his current role last summer.

He said the indoor climbing industry is taking off, but he would like to see a few more gyms here in Denver.

“One of the things I tried to do after starting this role was to look at the industry as a whole and see what we’re missing,” he said. “And one of the things we identified was that the indoor climbing community is exploding, but there are few resources in that capacity along the Front Range.”

It took about $500,000 of state incentives to close the Brooklyn Boulders deal. Sam Bailey of the Governor’s Office of Economic Development and International Trade, said Brooklyn Boulders will be eligible for up to about $556,000 in state tax credits over the next eight years.

To earn the full tax credit amount, he said, Brooklyn Boulders will need to hire and keep at least 33 fulltime employees.

Brooklyn Boulders will see its share of competition as a newcomer to the climbing business in Denver.

Denver Bouldering Club has two locations: One in Denver just southwest of 6th Avenue and Interstate 25, and another in Sheridan. Movement Climbing + Fitness moved into Denver towards the end of 2014. And Thrillseekers Climbing Gym has been around on South Broadway since 1992.

Ubergrippen Indoor Climbing also is building a new gym in Stapleton.

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