Developer halves Curtis Park micro-apartment plans

A rendering of the proposed site, facing southwest on Downing Street.

A rendering of the proposed site, facing southwest on Downing Street.

A Curtis Park micro-apartment project just got a little smaller.

After proposing more than 50 Curtis Park micro-units earlier this year, developer Doug Gaddis is back with a toned-down, 29-apartment plan and the support of neighborhood association Curtis Park Neighbors.

“It’s a lot different than where we started from and now I think it has a lot more synergy with the neighborhood,” Gaddis said. “We really worked with the neighborhood to reduce a lot of our units, number one, and we also reached out to obtain some parking in the neighborhood.”

The project covers two small lots at 3021 Downing St. and 3148 Stout St. that Gaddis bought for $671,000 in 2014. The two sites total a quarter-acre.

Originally the plan was to build a pair of three-story buildings. The larger of the two would have 28 units on a triangular lot near 32nd and Downing streets. Gaddis would then build 26 more on an adjacent lot fronting Stout Street.

The revised plan shows a two-story building with only 17 units at 32nd and Downing with a rooftop deck, bike storage and a laundry room. The Stout Street parcel will now stand two stories tall with only 12 apartments.

In May, Gaddis Properties planned the micro-apartments near the 30th and Downing light-rail station.

In May, Gaddis Properties planned the micro-apartments near the 30th and Downing light-rail station.

Gaddis has also leased 20 parking spots within walking distance on the building, according to a letter of support presented by Curtis Park Neighbors. His original 56-unit plan would have capitalized on a zoning code that allowed projects to proceed without parking on lots smaller than 6,250 square feet.

A moratorium on that small lot parking exemption passed city council last week. But with only 29 apartments and 20 spaces of available surface parking, Gaddis said his revamped project will be fine to proceed without using the small lot parking exemption.

But with apartments at only 320 square feet, Gaddis is betting many interested renters won’t own a car. The project’s location just a block away from the 30th and Downing light rail station is what first caught Gaddis’s eye when he bought the real estate.

“We’re really trying to bring something that’s as affordable as possible to Denver and also has good transit. That our whole idea from the beginning,” He said. “We’re a big believer in that area and everything is going on steps away from downtown there.”

Davis Partnership is the architect on the project. The neighborhood association wrote that their newest design works because the Downing Street building matches neighboring residential buildings and the Stout Street design fits with the single family homes and row homes on that block.

In a letter to the Landmark Preservation Committee signed by Curtis Park Neighbors Design Review Committee Chair Sue Glassmacher, the association said it now fully supports the development’s mass and scale.

“With a total of 29 units, this is a project the neighbors can live with,” the letter read.

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