If fully realized, the plan could see the blooming of an entirely new neighborhood in downtown Denver, a place in the urban landscape that could be the eventual home to more than 15,000 people.
Plans for the development of what is being called the River Mile were announced earlier this spring and could include the construction of several skyscrapers, office and retail space, as well as open green space along the banks of the South Platte River.
Three years ago Revesco Properties, a real estate investment and management company, purchased the popular Elitch Gardens Theme and Water Park with the idea of upgrading and modernizing a 62-acre space known for its roller coaster and water rides.
Shortly after that purchase the Denver-based Revesco announced that it was thinking about the possibilities of redeveloping a massive 17 acres of parking lots adjacent to the park.
That redevelopment, as initially announced, would transform a sea of cement into a thriving, mixed-use site that would also include three new parks, a pedestrian tunnel under the nearby Speer Boulevard, and a bike and pedestrian crossing across the South Platte River.
Now Revesco officials are taking details of the project, which could take more than two decades to fully build out, to the Denver City Council.
Council members will then be tasked with upgrading Denver’s Downtown Area Plan, a document initially approved in 2007 that provides a framework for future downtown residential development.
An amendment to that plan could more fully incorporate the specifics of the River Mile project and may additionally address the possibility that eventually the much larger Elitch Gardens will also be given over to the visionary mixed-use development.
Bordered by I-25, Speer Boulevard, and the South Platte River, the River Mile project, if fully realized, would be the largest new neighborhood development seen in urban Denver in decades.
By Garry Boulard
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