The high-end apartment complex that sits in the middle of Centennial's flagship shopping development is under new ownership, and a gastrobar nearby closed as part of company moves amid bankruptcy.
Sunroad Enterprises paid $71 million, or $351,485 per unit, for the Portola at SouthGlenn, sold by Alberta Development Partners, according to the Colorado Real Estate Journal. Alberta controls nearly all of The Streets at Southglenn, the outdoor mall located at East Arapahoe Road and South University Boulevard.
The 202-unit complex at SouthGlenn — built in 2009 — features upscale apartments, and other high-end housing might be in store in the coming years.
Developers want to revitalize the mall, which has fought recent vacancies and is facing the expectation that Macy's could close in coming years. Because the developers want to change the mix of types of properties allowed, their plans need the city's approval.
The recently closed Sears property at SouthGlenn is owned by Northwood Investors, which wants to add apartments there. Alberta wants to put apartments and office space, and possibly retail and entertainment establishments, where Macy's stands.
The units Alberta adds could be 10% to 20% higher in price than the current Portola apartments, where a one-bedroom's lowest price range is $1,538 to more than $2,000.
Residents nearby largely see the proposal as adding unwanted density and traffic to a mall that already abuts one of the busiest intersections in the city. The plans have also elicited a potential petition effort to steer the vision in a different direction, although a petition had not formally materialized as of late January. The Centennial City Council's vote on the plans, after the plans are submitted to the city, is expected later this year.
The sale of the Portola apartments didn't appear to affect developers' plans for redevelopment at SouthGlenn.
“We are continually evaluating our portfolio and selectively selling. It's a common business discipline we've exhibited for my entire career,” said Donald Provost, founding principal with Alberta.
Regarding the redevelopment plans, Provost said Alberta is discussing alternatives with Northwood and intends to revisit the plans over the next few months.
Under the proposal, more than 1,000 new residential units could be added, including 148 that are currently allowed but not yet built, according to the city.
Meanwhile, the Bar Louie location at SouthGlenn announced on Jan. 27 its involvement in a Chapter 11 bankruptcy sale, according to a company news release. Bar Louie will continue to operate more than 90 locations across the country.
Bar Louie filed voluntary petitions for relief under Chapter 11 protection of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code, according to the release. In advance of the filing, the company closed what it called “underperforming locations” to strengthen its financial position.
Provost asserted that Bar Louie “manipulated the bankruptcy laws to their corporate advantage.”
“The store performed well and always has,” Provost said. “We have several great operators interested in replacing them, and we aren't concerned at all.”
With bars across the United States, Bar Louie serves “shareable” food with craft cocktails, martinis, beer and wine, the release said.
"Bar Louie is a profitable business focused on long-term growth with new investors,” Tom Fricke, CEO of Bar Louie, said in the release. “The sale through Chapter 11 will help us to focus on our profitable core locations and expand in areas that have a proven track record of success.”
The lease for Macy's at The Streets at SouthGlenn was recently extended through early 2022, a Macy's corporate representative recently confirmed.
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