Funeral home at center of landmark fight sells; buyer looks to build around it


The Olinger Moore Howard Chapel, a funeral home that closed last year, is located at 4345 W. 46th Ave. in Denver. (Credit: BusinessDen)

DENVER — The closed Berkeley funeral home that was at the center of a landmark fight last year has sold to a developer planning to preserve it — and potentially wrap it with a three-story apartment building.

Denver-based GM Development, led by Ben Gearhart and Charles Moore, paid $4.5 million this week for the former Olinger Moore Howard Chapel at 4345 W. 46th Ave., according to public records.

The building, which sits on a 2.05-acre lot, was sold by Service Corporation International, which operated the funeral home at the site prior to its January 2019 closure.

Denver-based developer Koelbel & Co. originally went under contract to buy the site, with plans to demolish the funeral home and build townhomes. But Historic Berkeley Regis, a neighborhood preservation organization, requested the building be landmarked, a designation that would prevent demolition.

Koelbel subsequently agreed to step away from the deal if a buyer interested in preserving the building could be found. BusinessDen reported in January that a new party was under contract.


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