The Regional Transportation District is preparing to execute an “exclusive negotiation agreement” with an Atlanta-based firm that could lead to the company redeveloping a Park-n-Ride lot in RiNo.
Portman Holdings was the top pick after it and one other company, Seattle-based Schnitzer West, responded to a request for qualifications that RTD issued last year for 3800 Wynkoop St., records show.
The 4.55-acre parcel has a 188-space parking lot on it, which serves RTD’s 38th and Blake station on the other side. The remainder of the property is undeveloped.
The area around the RTD station is a hotspot for redevelopment, thanks in large part to height incentives implemented in 2018. Numerous projects are underway or in the planning stages.
The move toward possible redevelopment of 3800 Wynkoop St. kicked off in spring 2019, when Portman expressed interest in the site using RTD’s “Unsolicited Proposal Procedure,” which outlines how firms can pursue development on transit agency property, according to RTD documents. BusinessDen reported Portman’s interest the following year, when the company submitted development plans to the city.
RTD ultimately determined Portman’s proposal had “legal, financial, and technical merit,” according to a November report from the agency’s board of directors. RTD then issued the request for qualifications last summer, because the agency’s process requires it to consider alternative proposals.
A selection committee then picked Portman over Schnitzer West, which is building the 12-story The Current office building a few blocks away from the site. The RTD committee cited Portman’s “extensive development experience, access to financial resources, and intent to provide greater affordability than required by local ordinance,” according to the board report.
The board authorized RTD to execute an exclusive negotiating agreement with Portman, which would establish a two-year period in which specifics of the deal would be hammered out. Under the pending deal, RTD would ground lease, not sell, the property. The agency’s request noted that any development would need to set aside at least 188 parking garage spaces for transit users.
RTD spokeswoman Marta Sipeki told BusinessDen the agreement could be executed in the next few months.
“In 12-18 months, RTD will have a better idea of what will be built on the site,” Sipeki said in an email.
Portman’s original development proposal called for three buildings to be constructed at the property: a 16-story office building and two seven-story residential buildings.
Locally, Portman previously developed Union Tower West, a 12-story building with office and hotel space at 1801 Wewatta St. The company didn’t respond to a request for comment Tuesday.
Adjacent to the 3800 Wynkoop lot, Scottish brewery BrewDog is preparing to open in a building owned by Denver-based Magnetic Capital.