Delivering a unique blend of retail, dining, and entertainment experiences that capture the spirit of Boulder while also serving as economic drivers for the city is a balancing act
by Austin Kane
In the past year alone, Boulder’s famed Pearl Street Mall, a four-block pedestrian promenade between 11th and 15th Streets in downtown, has undergone an undeniable shift as high-profile restaurant chains shutter their doors, citing, among other reasons, declining sales. While downtown Boulder sees eight to 10 visits every 90 days by 53 percent of area residents, real estate development and investment firms like Unico play an important role when it comes to sustaining the city’s long-term economic vitality. By thinking thoughtfully and strategically about downtown Boulder’s retail mix, everybody, including business owners and residents, can win.
This strategic retail evolution is already coming to life in Pearl Street’s East End, where many storefronts have felt the impact of the shifting retail environment. Since purchasing a majority stake in more than a dozen downtown Boulder properties in 2012, Unico has committed the time and resources to its revitalization by welcoming a mix of national and local brands that resonate with residents and visitors alike.
You may not be able to collect every single dollar that’s out there on the table if you want the right group of retailers occupying your space and adding to the streetscape
Earlier this month, Unico announced that the firm secured long-term leases with several new retailers along Pearl Street’s East End, including American retailer Patagonia at 1630 Pearl Street, modern-day food hall Avanti at 1401 Pearl Street, as well as Sweetgreen, a fast-casual salad chain and Soak Boulder, the city’s first saltwater soaking facility at 1601 Pearl Street.
These plans align with the Downtown Boulder Partnership’s vision for the East End to be a district for creative spirits, foodies, adventure seekers, and trend-setters.
About the news, we told Boulder-based BizWest: “What we are trying to do is identify the best tenants, regardless of what they are able to pay in rent, and structure a deal that makes sense for both parties. We want the lessee to be able to maintain its business and enjoy success, which allows us to be able to collect rent through the entire lease term. You may not be able to collect every single dollar that’s out there on the table if you want the right group of retailers occupying your space and adding to the streetscape of downtown Boulder.”
At Unico, we believe in keeping communities like Boulder feeling authentic. As retail continues to evolve, we’re confident that exploring a strategic mix of tenants will contribute to both the ethos and economic strength of cities across the United States.
- Unlocking the highest and best use along Boulder’s vibrant Pearl Street will allow retailers and landlords alike to flourish. Learn what Unico is doing to bring authentic brands to a proudly independent city in ColoradoBiz Magazine.
- Did you know that Unico purchased 14 buildings along the Pearl Street Mall in 2012? Click here to learn more about our Boulder portfolio.
- Earlier this year, Unico partnered with The Best Bees Company to bring a new pollinator habitat to the Citizens National Bank Building at 1426 Pearl Street. Unico is currently assessing expanding its beekeeping initiative to its additional properties in Boulder and other markets.
- Interested in leasing from Unico in Colorado or Salt Lake City? Connect with Unico’s Austin Kane.