Denver City Council approves proposal for mega development to replace Elitch Gardens

DENVER -- Denver's constantly growing skyline is poised for yet another major change. The River Mile project has gained approval from City Council. The large development would be built on the site Elitch Gardens currently occupies.

The massive, 58-acre development by Revesco Properties would create more than 8,000 residences at a time when Denver's housing needs continue to grow. With more apartments in the market, the price of rent in the city could decrease.

Early plans show it could feature buildings with as many as 59 floors.

There are mixed opinions about the proposal with some interviewed by FOX31.

“I actually love it. It's a great idea," one man said.

"It would definitely be a bummer to get rid of Elitch's," another Denverite said.

City officials say there will be benefits that will make up for loss of access to Elitch Gardens, like between 700 and 1,000 affordable housing units.

Twelve percent of the development would have to be reserved for open parks and recreational space, much of which would be located along the Platte River. The development would also draw more density to the city’s biggest transit hubs.

The city also has requirements that protect access to the sun and sky, so the high-rise buildings would be relatively slender and spaced wide apart.

The River Mile project could break ground as early as 2020. The entire Elitch Gardens site will not be immediately demolished, as the project will be constructed in phases.

While there are plans to relocate the amusement park, its next location is currently unknown.

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