New development eyed for Powers

RICH LADEN Updated: December 26, 2012 at 12:00 am • Published: December 26, 2012

Another commercial development is being eyed for Powers Boulevard on Colorado Springs’ northeast side, which over the last 10 to 15 years has become arguably the city’s top retail corridor.

A concept plan for Dublin Commons, which would include “commercial center uses” on 29 acres southeast of Powers and Dublin boulevards, has been submitted to Springs city planners by an investment group headed by local developer Warren Dean and businessman Phil Lane.

Their group, which includes a third member whom Dean declined to identify, paid $3.4 million for the property in September 2011, El Paso County land records show. The land had fallen into foreclosure a year earlier; its previous owners included Springs developers Ray O’Sullivan and Jim Morley, both of whom have lost projects to foreclosure over the past few years.

“We bought it because it’s in a good location, it’s a good corridor, with good access and good infrastructure,” Dean said. The project is in its early stages and will evolve, Dean said.

The property is zoned for various types of business uses, which could include retail or apartments, he said. The site — bounded by Dublin on the north, Powers on the west and Tutt Boulevard on the east — lends itself to free-standing buildings such as restaurants, but not necessarily big-box stores, Dean said.

It’s also possible the owners might sell off parcels to other developers or users, he said.

“We’re just starting to turn the rocks over right now,” Dean said of the site’s potential uses.

A concept plan such as the one Dean and Lane submitted is a preliminary step in the development process. With most commercial projects, a more detailed development plan is filed at a later date that spells out specific land-use proposals.

Dean and Lane also submitted a development plan to city officials, but only to show construction of a private drive on 1.3 acres of the property.

Powers Boulevard is a north-south highway that runs the length of the Springs on its east side; a roughly seven-mile stretch between Woodmen Road and Platte Avenue has become home to several shopping centers, big boxes such as Wal-Mart, Target and Lowe’s Home Improvement Warehouse, small retailers and dozens of restaurants.

The Powers-Dublin area has developed more slowly than other intersections along the corridor. But, in recent months, New Mexico-based Dion’s Pizza and a Snack Shack convenience store have opened on the intersection’s southwest corner, joining Burger King, Taco Bell, Kwal Paint and a Smudge Dog and Car Wash.

Legends Miniature Golf & Batting Cages is scheduled to open in 2013 on the intersection’s northwest corner.

Contact Rich Laden: 636-0228 Twitter @richladen
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