Buyer inks deal for piece of Base Village | AspenTimes.com

Buyer inks deal for piece of Base Village

Joel Stonington

Pat Smith inked a deal with Aspen Skiing Co. and Intrawest on Tuesday to buy the commercial portion of the Base Village development in Snowmass Village for an undisclosed price.

Smith, a principal in the privately held WestPac Investments LLC, purchased roughly 55,000 square feet of commercial space to be used for restaurants and shops, while the Skico will retain about 80,000 square feet for ticketing offices, ski school space and a 25,000-square-foot kids’ center. In all, the development will contain about 1 million square feet.

Smith said today is when he starts work on acquiring the more lucrative ” and expensive ” residential piece of Base Village. A source close to Tuesday’s deal said buying the commercial part of the base development establishes Smith as a legitimate player in the multi-million-dollar deal for the residential component.

“I’m hoping to succeed in acquiring the rest of the project,” Smith said. “All I’m really doing is stepping in. Right now Intrawest is the developer. All they’re really doing in reality is saying, ‘Pat, you step in, in place of Intrawest.’ I have a track record of 35 years building buildings. The first phase [of the sale] is complete.”

Smith evolved into a key developer in Snowmass Village after helping develop The Residences at Little Nell in Aspen, a fractional-residence hotel now under construction at the base of Aspen Mountain. He is also the main developer of the Snowmass Center and the Snowmass Mall.

The Base Village purchase puts Smith in the position of being the owner of nearly all of the commercial space in Snowmass Village. He said his interest in Base Village came, in part, because he needs somewhere to move tenants while the mall is redeveloped.

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Smith’s organization is now responsible for finding renters for the commercial space in Base Village as it is built. The plan for the village says that 32,000 square feet of restaurants, bars and cafes are scheduled to open in one building next year. Phase II includes 13,400 square feet of shops slated to open in another building in 2007-08, followed by 9,200 square feet of bars, restaurants and retail shops that will open in a third building between 2007 and 2009.

The residential part of the project includes 334 condominiums, a 27-unit Little Nell condo-hotel and a 226-unit Westin Lodge condo-hotel. They would be phased in between 2007 and 2011.

See Thursday’s Aspen Times for more on the changing ownership of Base Village.

Joel Stonington’s e-mail address is jstonington@aspentimes.com

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