Pitkin County judge signs order for Aspen Club sale

PCL Construction Services have haulted their efforts on the Aspen Club, a high-profile construction project due to finance restructuring.
Anna Stonehouse/The Aspen Times

A judge signed an order Friday allowing the Pitkin County public trustee to sell the Aspen Club at a foreclosure auction due to its outstanding debt of $10.7 million.

Pitkin County District Judge Chris Seldin’s ruling came after the Aspen Club’s scheduled court hearing Feb. 20 was postponed.

“This is just another part of what has to be submitted and be obtained by the foreclosing party,” said Sydney Tofany, Pitkin County’s chief deputy treasurer and deputy public trustee. “It doesn’t mean the sale is going to happen, but this is another step along the path.”

The foreclosing party, GPIF Aspen Club LLC, claims that it is due the nearly $11 million associated with a $45 million loan the club received from FirstBank in May 2016. In December, FirstBank conveyed the loan note to GPIF Aspen Club LLC, an entity independent from the bank.

Despite the judge’s order, Aspen Club President Michael Fox said financing is nearly in place to advance the redevelopment project and stave off foreclosure proceedings.

“We’re almost there,” he said Monday. “It will be wrapped up soon. There are things in the term sheet that we’re cleaning up.”

The Aspen Club’s deadline to file an intent to cure the debt has been extended from Feb. 20 to March 13, with March 27 the deadline to satisfy the debt, according to the treasurer’s office.

More than $25 million in mechanics’ liens that subcontractors have filed either separately or together are pending against the Aspen Club and general contractor PCL Construction Services. The filing of a mechanic’s lien is one of the first formal steps a contractor takes to collect on a debt when it is not promptly paid.

PCL Construction, out of Denver, has pending litigation against the Aspen Club to foreclose a $17.7 million lien it filed against the Aspen Club on Sept. 26.

Both PCL and GPIF Aspen Club are making a run at a foreclosure through the judicial process, while FirstBank began foreclosure proceedings in November through the Pitkin County Treasurer’s Office.

With GPIF Aspen Club filing its suit Jan. 26 in Pitkin County District Court, the matter is being processed through the court system, while the treasurer’s office is kept apprised of legal developments in the matter.

GPIF Aspen Club and PCL Construction, along with Lakewood-based Ludvik Electric Co., filed a court brief Feb. 19 noting that they are working on prioritizing the liens in an agreeable manner.

Until that happens, both Ludvik and PCL could seek injunctive relief to delay the foreclosure sale, which currently is set for March 7, according to court papers. The parties said they plan to postpone to sale until March 28.

The Aspen Club project, located at 1450 Ute Ave., includes plans to remodel the 40,000-square-foot Aspen Club and Spa building and the construction of a 54,000-square-foot lodge with 20 timeshares, while 13,600 square feet of development would account for 12 multi-family affordable-housing units.

Most of the construction work, which began last year, has been stalled because a number of subcontractors have said they haven’t been paid for their labor and materials.