Park-n-Ride closes at Washington, 104th lot

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The city of Thornton has taken another step toward securing a developer, or developers, for the former Target site at 104th Avenue and Washington Street.

The city on July 1 closed down the Regional Transportation District’s Park-n-Ride that has been at that location since 1995.

Jeff Coder, Thornton’s deputy city manager of city development, said shutting down the lot came down to two issues: safety of the commuters and making it more attractive to developers.

Although the Target building has been demolished, Coder said, crews are still removing utility and water lines on that property.

“We’ve had challenges with people cutting through the lot and ensuring everybody’s safety,” he said. “Also, the lot isn’t adequately lit any more. Plus, we need to demonstrate to folks that the property is completely ready for development.”

While no developers have been secured for the site, Coder said, “It looks like we have good interest in the property and hope to get it developed soon.”

Although RTD had a lease agreement with the former owner of the property, it never had one with the city, Coder said.

According to Julia Yugel, public relations specialist with RTD, 25-30 commuters on average used the lot. She said riders can use the park-in-rides at Wagon Road or the 104th and Revere locations.

“The routes will still pick up and drop off passengers at this spot (at 104th and Washington), there just won’t be parking there,” she said.

The routes that stop at the location are AA, 40X and 12.

“RTD was looking for another possibility (for another park-in-ride near 104th and Washington), but we were unable to find an affordable substitute that wouldn’t add additional time and costs to the route,” Yugel said.

Closing the park-in-ride is just one of several moves the city has made recently in an effort to get the property developed. In June, council approved rezoning the approximate 15 acres, south of East 104th between Grant and Washington streets, from community retail to planned development. The rezoning allows for a wider use of the land, including multifamily residential and office warehouse uses.

The planned development design has four individual parcels with roughly seven pad sites, but the sites are just conceptual and can be combined, split or rearranged.

The city has been trying to get the land developed for more than a dozen years.