Couple seeks to build business in west Arvada

Colorado Tap House could proceed with rezoning approval from city council

Casey Van Divier
cvandivier@coloradocommunitymedia.com
Posted 2/26/20

On March 2, city council will vote on a request that would pave the way for an Arvada couple to build a new business on the west side of town. If approved, the currently vacant property at 14982 W. …

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Couple seeks to build business in west Arvada

Colorado Tap House could proceed with rezoning approval from city council

Posted

On March 2, city council will vote on a request that would pave the way for an Arvada couple to build a new business on the west side of town.

If approved, the currently vacant property at 14982 W. 69th Ave. would be rezoned to allow for development of Colorado Tap House — which, with its many facets, including a tavern, game area and fire pits, is best summarized as a “community gathering place,” Erik Zeitlow said.

Zeitlow and his wife, Jen, are the developers and future owners of the tap-house. The two have lived in west Arvada for 25 years and have long felt there was a lack of commercial development in the area, Zeitlow said.

“One of the things our neighbors have always asked is, where are the places to go and hang out? There’s not much that’s really further off to the west,” Zeitlow said. “We want to bring that here.”

The owners have planned for the building, roughly 35 feet in height, to incorporate indoor and outdoor areas. These will include private event rooms, a second-level patio and an outdoor space with giant versions of games like Jenga and Connect 4.

On Feb. 4, the planning commission unanimously voted to recommend city council approve the necessary changes to allow for the project. Chairman T.O. Owens said he was mainly swayed by the unusual amount of community support the project has already garnered.

“It’s not rare that community members come out to these meetings, but they often come out when they’re not in favor of something,” Owens said. “We had about 40 community members come out in support. It was so refreshing to see.”

Just under half of those community members spoke at the meeting, he estimated, many of them highlighting the project’s potential to provide a community hub in west Arvada.

Edward Rothschild, owner of AlphaGraphics in Arvada and cyclist in community group Bike Friendly Arvada, attended the planning commission meeting to say he supported the project.

The tap-house could provide a unique place for individual cyclists or groups on the Ralston Creek Trail to stop in and take a break, with the trail running through the south portion of the property, he said.

“It’s an innovative use of that piece of property and it adds to the west side of Arvada,” Rothschild said. “They did a nice job of working with the community and providing an asset.”

Zeitlow said that while he feels the vast majority of individuals he’s spoken to support the project, some have brought concerns to his attention. Direct neighbors of the project have been particularly concerned about noise and traffic levels.

In July, the city and developers held a community meeting to collect input and answer questions about these possible concerns.

“We’ve worked with adjacent businesses, and we’ve even changed the building design and landscape design to increase our sound buffer,” Zeitlow said.

He added that, even if the rezone is approved by city council, “the approval comes with the condition to work with some of the minor outstanding questions in the final development process.”

Should council vote in favor of the project, the Zeitlows will work with the city planner to create a final development plan, which would be approved administratively, Zeitlow said. The couple could then obtain permits and begin construction, with plans to potentially open the Colorado Tap House at the end of this year.

“The stars would have to align, but we’d love to open in November 2020,” which would be the earliest possible opening date, Zeitlow said.

To provide feedback on the project, community members can attend the city council meeting at 6 p.m., March 2, at City Hall, 8101 Ralston Road.

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