Regents approve CU Boulder hotel, conference center – Colorado Hometown Weekly

November 8, 2019 in Boulder


After 15 years of planning and development, University of Colorado Boulder is finally moving forward with building a hotel and conference center on campus.

The three-acre property near Broadway and Grandview Avenue will hold a 250-room hotel, 25,000-square-foot conference center and underground parking garage that will be the biggest facility of its kind in Boulder County, according to a statement from the university.

According to the Denver Post, the hotel will replace two vacant CU Boulder buildings along Broadway south of Grandview Avenue, CU spokesman Joshua Lindenstein said. Previously, those buildings hosted the Center for Asian Studies and the Arts & Sciences Financial Services Center.

The University of Colorado Board of Regents approved a lease of the property to New Mexico-based company HRV Hotel Partners on Thursday in a 5-2 vote. Regents Jack Kroll and John Carson voted against the measure and Regent Sue Sharkey was absent.

Under the lease, HRV will design, build, finance, own, operate, and maintain the hotel and conference center. A second resolution transferred landlord rights and responsibilities from CU Boulder to the CU Boulder Enterprise Corporation, a nonprofit affiliated with the university.

University of Colorado regents approved a lease to HRV New Mexico-based company HRV Hotel Partners at this site near Broadway and Grandview Avenue in Boulder to build a hotel and conference center at the system’s Boulder campus. The project is expected to be complete by the end of 2022.

Kroll said he supports the project but voted against it because he wants more information about the university-affiliated corporation.

“We need to have a better understanding of how the boards for these ancillary entities are created and a better appreciation for the process by which funds will be devoted to these entities,” he said.

“Once we have a better understanding of that I think we’ll be in a good position, but I expect these entities will continue to proliferate both in their number and their scale as the university looks to deal with the lack of state funding. We’ve got to have an understanding of what controls are we giving up for what type of return and what are the risks we‘re taking,” Kroll continued.

The structure allows the university more oversight and protection from risk, CU Boulder Chief Operating Officer Kelly Fox said, noting it also opens the door for more investments.

“This has been a great effort by people on campus as well as the city, and we’re really excited about the opportunities this opens up,” she said.

CU Boulder agreed to locate the hotel in the University Hill neighborhood in 2016 at the request of city officials who wanted to promote the development of the area.

City officials in turn agreed to dedicate 45% of the hotel’s lodging taxes to support the project’s financial feasibility for at least 20 years and an additional 10% of lodging taxes to support use of the conference center by community groups and nonprofits.

The projected is estimated to cost $130 million, with construction slated to begin in mid-2020 and wrap up by the end of 2022.



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