Site of Baker apartment building explosion sells

374 N. Santa Fe Drive

The lot at 374 N. Santa Fe Drive is listed for $1.5 million. (Thomas Gounley)

The site along Santa Fe Drive where a natural gas explosion destroyed a small apartment building in 2018 has sold.

Rio Norte LLC purchased 374 Santa Fe Drive, which was cleared of debris about a year ago, in late May for $1.28 million, according to public records.

The lot in the Baker neighborhood is 13,100 square feet, or 0.13 acres, making the deal worth about $98 a square foot.

Denver’s Parikh Stevens Architects is designing the project planned for the site, although President Harsh Parikh said specifics still need to be ironed out.

“The zoning allows a three-story mixed-use building, and that’s what we will do … We don’t know exactly how the uses will be sliced and diced,” he said.

Parikh said the timing of when development could begin also is unclear, with the coronavirus having added to the uncertainty. A concept plan has been submitted for the project, but not a formal site-development plan.

Parikh said he intends to build a “jewel” along a stretch of the Santa Fe arts district that is “a little grittier” than the portion north of 6th Avenue.

“We’re betting that portion of Santa Fe in the next five, 10 years is going to see more development,” he said.

Nine people were injured in the August 2018 explosion at the site. A handyman was sentenced to 195 years in prison in connection with the incident in April.

The lot was priced at $1.5 million when it was listed for sale last summer. It was marketed by David Kolenc with HomeSmart Realty Group.

The sale is the second of a corner lot along Santa Fe Drive in recent weeks. Developer Leon Cisneros, of Denver-based CRE Development Investments, purchased 1275 Santa Fe Drive from Buzz Geller’s Paradise Land Co. on May 18.

374 N. Santa Fe Drive

The lot at 374…

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