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Denver council committee approves $700K loan for Montbello cultural hub

Montbello project aims to end supermarket scarcity and affordable housing
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Posted at 7:01 PM, Aug 26, 2020
and last updated 2020-08-27 11:04:26-04

DENVER -- After years of trying to get a grocery store chain to open up shop in the Montbello community, organizers have decided to take things into their own hands.

A Denver city council committee approved a seven-year term, $700,000 loan agreement with the Montbello Organizing Committee to acquire an old RTD bus station for a new cultural hub called Montbello FreshLo.

The massive complex, if the loan is approved by the full council, will house a grocery store, 96 affordable housing units and office space.

It would be located in a vacant lot near 46th and Peoria.

"The need for access to fresh food, affordable housing, the need to honor and respect diverse cultures in our community," Donna Garnett with Montbello Organizing Committee said. "We are already exploring ways in which we can supplement the cost or offset some of the cost-per-square-foot so local men and women can afford to do their business."

The project will cost about $54 million total to complete, Garnett said, though the bill said projected costs run around $32 million for the development.

Most of the funding will come from grants, loans and tax credits.

Construction will begin early next year and would be expected to be complete by the summer of 2022.

The resolution will next head to the Mayor Council and will be scheduled for a full council hearing on Sept. 14.