Meadows angles for retailers eyeing other communities
Mid-sized retailers looking at opening locations in other local communities are being given new reason to consider Glenwood Springs instead.The timing of a proposal to expand Glenwood Meadows is aimed at making retailers aware of the options that may be available in Glenwood before they commit to moving elsewhere in the region, a Glenwood Meadows developer says.”We are looking to put those options in front of them before any of them get locked into any of those other alternatives,” said Steve Shoflick, vice president and chief operating officer with Englewood-based Miller Weingarten Realty.Glenwood Meadows, a 400,000-square-foot commercial development, opened last fall.Under an agreement with Robert Macgregor, who spearheaded the Glenwood Meadows development, Miller Weingarten would buy an adjacent lot where it would build additional retail space.Miller Weingarten is planning to present a conceptual plan for the expansion to city officials for review. It had been scheduled to appear before the city Planning and Zoning Commission this week but instead decided to present its plan to City Council at its Aug. 3 meeting, Shoflick said.A goal is to counter the notion retailers had that they have nowhere to locate in the region except places such as Carbondale, Gypsum and Rifle, he said.”I think that’s part of the issue, is we’re trying to cement Glenwood Springs as an option that heretofore those retailers would not have known about,” Shoflick said.Miller Weingarten hopes to build on what Shoflick said has been the initial success of Glenwood Meadows.”The performance of the tenants there has been good and as a result there appears to us additional interest to continue to build Glenwood Springs into the … retail hub of the region,” he said.Miller Weingarten’s move could put Glenwood Springs that much farther ahead of Carbondale, where the town is continuing to decide just what level of retail development it wants to see at the Crystal River Marketplace property. Voters rejected one plan for the development in 2003, and the town is considering options that include allowing several mid-sized stores.That could put it in direct competition for retailers with the Glenwood Meadows expansion. Although the conceptual plan has yet to be submitted, Glenwood community development director Andrew McGregor has said the city has been told it could include one 30,000-square-foot building and three 15,000-square-foot ones, along with a restaurant.Rich Schierburg, of the Denver-based Peregrine Group, which is seeking to develop the Marketplace property, did not return calls for comment but reportedly has expressed concerns about potential retail prospects picking Glenwood over Carbondale.Carbondale Mayor Michael Hassig said the town has no control over whether retailers decide to go to Glenwood, but added, “I’m hesitant to see this as a battle for retail. It’s very different situations.”Glenwood Meadows is located off Interstate 70, and “is not at all comparable to the relatively small site here in Carbondale,” he said.Glenwood Springs made its decision about Glenwood Meadows long ago and is living with the consequences, both good and bad, he said.Hassig called Glenwood and Carbondale “very different communities, with different visions of what they want their town to be like.”Carbondale has been slower to decide on its vision for large-scale retail development, but Hassig said the town is trying to do its best to pay attention to an abundance of opinions from residents.”There were lessons learned from the referendum on the first Marketplace. We’re trying not to repeat those mistakes,” he said.Shoflick said it’s too early to talk about prospective tenants for the Meadows expansion. He said furniture, clothing and consumer electronics stores are possibilities.He said Miller Weingarten would talk to prospective tenants following conceptual review with the city and probably would submit formal plans to the city sometime next year.Contact Dennis Webb: 945-8515, ext. firstname.lastname@example.org
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The Glenwood Springs City Council will consider approving the discounted rate for students Thursday night.