Parking lot, Little Annie’s under contract |

Parking lot, Little Annie’s under contract

ASPEN ” A 15,000-square-foot swath of land in the heart of downtown Aspen, listed for $39 million, is under contract.

Owned by longtime businessman Ed Dingilian, the property went under contract in the past few days, according to Multiple Listing Service filings submitted by Mark Wyman, managing director of the Aspen/Snowmass office of The Fleisher Co.

The property has been on the market since August.

The property includes the Little Annie’s building, the former Huntsman Gallery building, and the parking lot at the corner of Hyman Avenue and Hunter Street.

In addition to the property, the agreement also includes the transfer of ownership of Little Annie’s Restaurant operations. The intent of the parties is to continue the operation of Little Annie’s Restaurant after it’s purchased, Wyman said.

Wyman declined to identify the prospective buyer or say when the deal will close.

The Dingilian family’s assemblage of the property began in the 1960s while Ed Dingilian was a student at the Aspen Music School.

Two weeks ago, Wyman ran full-page local newspaper ads marketing the land as a “legacy property.” The advertising blitz was an attempt to reach the billionaires who have connections to Aspen and were in town during the holidays.

The property’s potential development possibilities include subterranean commercial space. Community amenities could include museum space, as well as public and private office and retail space, and restaurants and local-serving businesses. Public parking also would be available below ground.

The corner property has three access points that could lead to public rights of way underneath city-owned streets on Hunter and Hyman.

And while that is only one vision the Dingilian family has for the property, the new owner may have different ideas.

“The buyer has their owns plans for the property,” Wyman said.

The Dingilian family believes the right project also will win over the Aspen City Council, despite the fact that it has voted down some major land-use applications in recent months and is perceived as a slow-growth council.

The team assembled to market the property has gone to the ends of the earth to find a buyer who shares Dingilian’s vision of creating a development that’s designed to leave a legacy for decades to come. The property has been advertised in publications around the world, including the global editions of The Wall Street Journal, The Economist magazine and the Hong Kong Times.

The land is zoned for uses allowed in the commercial core, which include retail, restaurant and offices on the ground floor, and lodging and residential on the upper floors, according to city codes. That means timeshares, fractionals, condominiums or apartments are allowed on the second and third floors.

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