New retail space on Lincoln

Groundwork under way in parking lot next to Old Town Pub

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— Construction has begun on a new commercial building on Lincoln Avenue in downtown Steamboat Springs.

Sandwiched between the Old Town Pub and Rustique Home and Garden Collection, what has long been a parking lot at 612 Lincoln Ave. soon will be home to a 4,000-square-foot retail building.

A combination of construction prices and financing made this the right time to build, said Dean Sandvik, who is partnering with Jack and Shirlee Finney on the project. The Finneys own the Great Escape Travel Company in the adjacent building.

"Financing and construction, the environments in both of these are pretty good. Rates are low for financing and there are good prices for construction," Sandvik said.

Although construction is only beginning now, the project was approved in the late 1980s. The first phase was renovating the existing building that holds The Red Horse, Mountain Essentials, Rustique and Great Escape Travel. At that time, Sandvik added 15 feet onto the existing building.

The second, one-story building now going in will add two, approximately 1,100-square-foot storefronts along Lincoln Avenue. Two other stores will face the courtyard on the east side of the existing building.

Tenants could display products on the courtyard and if a restaurant used the space, it could set up tables there, Sandvik said. He said they have not finalized any tenants for the buildings.

"We haven't really started looking. We wanted to make sure we were going to build before we went through that," Sandvik said.

Last week, Sandvik was given a building permit from the Routt County Building Department. Construction was valued at $300,000. The building is expected to be completed by the end of October.

The one-story building will have similar architecture and building materials as the existing commercial building, which is also scheduled for some upgrades.

An Old West style mimicking the squared front of the Old Town Pub is planned for the top of the building. Sandvik also said window treatments would be different from the existing commercial building.

Plans for the two buildings received vested approval in 1988. Construction started on the existing building in 1989 and Sandvik said they got confirmation in 1995 that the second building still had vested approval.

They had to go back before the city council in May to challenge the city's planning staff ruling that the vested approval was no longer valid. City Council voted in favor of the property owners and a building permit was granted.

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