The sprawling, tree-lined campus of a school in southwest Denver that was opened more than a century ago may soon be redeveloped for residential, retail, and restaurant purposes.
Colorado Height University, at 3001 South Federal Boulevard, announced two years ago that it was closing its doors in 2017 due to accreditation issues.
In the wake of that closure, residents expressed concern about the future of the campus, the visual center point of which is a handsome six-story Romanesque structure that served as the school’s main administration building.
The six-story red stone building was designed by well-known Colorado architect Frank Edbrooke in 1891 and is one of several iconic structures on a campus that was originally the home to the Loretto Heights Academy.
Now the 74-acre campus has been sold for $16.5 million to the Glendale, Colorado-based Westside Investment Partners, after a deal earlier this summer to sell the property fell through.
Officials with Westside Investment say their goal for the site, which includes a library, performing arts center, and series of classroom buildings, is to keep the historic buildings intact.
But the company has also said that it wants to redevelop other parts of the campus for retail and restaurant space. The redevelopment may also include the construction of some affordable housing space.
Exact plans for the site have not yet been revealed, but are expected to be announced shortly.
Originally founded by the Sisters of Loretto, who opened a Catholic high school for girls, the larger site contains a 1-acre cemetery with the graves of some 62 nuns who had served the school for decades as teachers and administrators.
The new owners have promised to leave the cemetery protected and undisturbed.
By Garry Boulard
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