A pair of hotel projects near the Anschutz Medical Campus took a step forward recently when the Colorado Commission on Higher Education (CCHE) approved recovery zone facility bond financing for the ventures.
While CU will have no role in the hotels' development or operations, the university lent its support to the projects to help developers secure low-interest bonds, which are available under the American Reinvestment and Recovery Act.
Recovery zone facility bond stipulations require that applicants demonstrate the benefit of the projects to an educational institution. The CCHE has authorization authority over the bonds. The Fitzsimons Redevelopment Authority, which works closely with CU, was the conduit for the bond proposal. In a recent presentation to the CCHE, CU officials affirmed that having hotel conference facilities and patient lodging nearby would benefit the university.
"There's certainly a need for the hotels near the Anschutz Medical Campus as it continues its development as a major national and international health-care destination," said CU President Bruce Benson. "We need space for patient stays, as well as conference facilities, and these projects should help meet those needs."
There are three hotels proposed for the area, but only two sought the recovery zone bonds, one at Fitzsimons Village (south of East Colfax Avenue) and the other at the Colorado Science + Technology Park (East Montview Boulevard and Ursula Court). Each aims to serve a different market segment.
The first, a full-service conference center and 200-room hotel, would be completed by Corporex, which has developed and managed hotels for 45 years. Construction is scheduled to begin in February.
The second would be Hyatt Place, a limited-service, 163-room hotel to be completed by Gateway Hospitality Group, a national hotel developer.
A construction schedule for the two projects has not been set.
The third proposed project, Springhill Suites by Marriott, would be a 153-room hotel on the south side of East Colfax Avenue.