If you’re a commercial real estate investor or a developer, there are tremendous opportunities along West Colorado Avenue and Manitou Avenue.
A Pikes Peak Regional Transportation Authority project slated to start in spring 2015 will bury power lines, create sidewalks, enhance the area biking and walking trails and slow traffic between 31st Street and the Highway 24 interchange on the east end of Manitou Springs.
The road, which currently has two traffic lanes in each direction, will have one lane in each direction and a center turn lane.
Funding for the estimated $15 million project is already secured and it’s expected to proceed as planned.
The project will make the stretch of road currently called “no mans land” match Manitou Springs. A similar road project in Manitou in the early 2000s stimulated tremendous economic investment and activity that has transformed the little mountain town into one of the most vibrant nodes in El Paso County.
Investment opportunity along West Colorado Avenue
This stretch of road is packed with motels built in the 1950s and ‘60s that are largely underutilized.
Some of the motels are well maintained and successful, but many have not been updated and regularly rent rooms long-term at steep discounts. Several properties are already available for sale along this stretch of road, which is being rebranded as The Avenue. Other properties are likely to become available.
It’s not just motels. There is a wide variety of properties sprinkled along The Avenue.
These properties are prime for redevelopment and some even fall within a Manitou Springs urban renewal district where public money could be used to help cover redevelopment expenses.
West Colorado Avenue attraction
This stretch of road isn’t just attractive because it’s being redeveloped. It’s actually astonishing that it has been neglected as long as it has.
More than 2 million people a year visit Garden of the Gods, adjacent to this corridor. Colorado Springs tourists spend much of their time on the West Side, visiting Manitou Springs, the Cog Railroad and Pikes Peak. The main gateway to some of the city’s most splendid attractions is West Colorado Avenue.
Investors and developers recognized the area’s potential in the middle of the century. That’s why they built the motels. But confusion about jurisdiction in “no mans land” resulted in neglect and deferred maintenance.
This project is just the beginning of a major transformation along West Colorado Avenue. The rest will depend on private investors and developers with vision. I’m a commercial real estate broker in Colorado Springs and I’d love to work with anyone with an idea or the simple inclination to make an investment in property along The Avenue.
Please see this story I wrote for the Colorado Springs Business Journal if you’d like more information about the project.