Housing

Tenants at The Grand Told to Vacate Luxury Complex Within Thirty Days

Residents at The Grand on 1777 Chestnut Place say they've lived through floods, power outages, unsanitary conditions and property damage.
Residents at The Grand on 1777 Chestnut Place say they've lived through floods, power outages, unsanitary conditions and property damage. Special to Westword
Life is definitely not grand for tenants in The Grand luxury apartments at 1701 and 1777 Chestnut Place. They've been given thirty days to get out.

In December 2021, we reported on lousy conditions at the 508-unit apartment complex behind Union Station, which had just opened in 2018. That summer, the complex had flooded, causing a power outage during a record heat wave; problems from the flood persisted for months. The pool, which residents argued was an amenity that helped justify their high rents — $1,500 rent for a studio up to $8,000 for a penthouse — was often closed because of unsanitary conditions.

The Denver Fire Department had cited the property for a series of violations on October 8, including accessibility violations, fire doors in need of repair, no current conveyance certificate of operation for the elevators, and an outdated generator, boiler and swimming pool permit.

On December 7, the Department of Community Planning and Development issued an order noting that the Grand had failed to maintain safe and sanitary conditions, citing such violations as broken or leaking water supply lines, partially broken or unsupported glass guard panels, and incomplete moisture barriers and insulation on some exterior walls.

In a follow-up inspection that month, the fire department noted a compromised fire suppression system, resulting in an order that the Grand obtain a master suppression construction permit and submit a structural design in order to avoid further fire code violations. The Department of Community Planning and Development received the design proposal permit on December 20.

In the six months since then, the building has completed partial replacement of insulation and drywall in select areas that were damaged by water, as well as water mitigation and drying work in some parts, according to the CPD.

However, the CPD notes that several other projects are still in progress, with permits outstanding: a plumbing permit to replace pipes, fittings and valves; permits to replace drywall after plumbing repairs have been made; permits for partial replacement of insulation and drywall in areas that were damaged by water; permits to install new spandrel wall backpan and replace glass; permits for replacement of all walls after sprinkler repair; a mechanical permit to remove existing ductwork so fire lines can be replaced; and permits for non-structural demo work in select units.

“While the immediate life-safety issues identified in the order to comply...were resolved, the building still needs to make a number of repairs,” according to the CPD.

And because of all that outstanding repair work, the Grand served all of its tenants with a thirty-day notice to vacate on July 6, Denver7 reported. The notice letter from Greystar, which manages the property, states: “As we’ve previously communicated, we had hoped to conduct the necessary repairs in a floor-by-floor, top-down approach to provide everyone maximum time to relocate. However, due to circumstances outside of our control, we are now unfortunately in a position where we are serving all residents with a 30-day notice to vacate, regardless of your lease end date, floor level or tower association."

Greystar has an office in Greenwood Village and manages hundreds of properties across the country, as well as in Latin America and Europe. The company did not respond to follow-up questions from Westword.

Both the CPD and the fire department say that they did not play a role in the property owner's decision to send out the notices; the CPD has not issued additional orders to comply or cited the property for violations since December 2021.

The Grand's developer and owner, Shorenstein Properties, is registered under the business name 1709 Chestnut Place LLC, according to Colorado Secretary of State records. Shorenstein has been expanding its Denver footprint quickly, particularly in the Union Station/Five Points neighborhoods. In February 2020, it announced plans to develop One Platte, a multi-use project at 1701 Platte Street that made our list of the ten best new buildings in Denver; Rev360, a building it acquired in late 2021, also made the list.
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Catie Cheshire is a staff writer at Westword. After getting her undergraduate degree at Regis University, she went to Arizona State University for a master's degree. She missed everything about Denver -- from the less-intense sun to the food, the scenery and even the bus system. Now she's reunited with Denver and writing news for Westword.
Contact: Catie Cheshire

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