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Business

  • ‘Redevelopment’ planned for Southwest Plaza

    An increase in vacant storefronts at Southwest Plaza mall is due in part to a planned large-scale renovation of the 30-year-old shopping center.

    Several stores in the mall have closed in recent weeks to help make way for a renovation, said Greg Sims, Southwest Plaza’s senior general manager. 

    There are several permit applications for construction work on the mall filed with Jefferson County. Yet Sims remained tight-lipped as to what the renovation will entail. 

  • Locavore hops to its local mission

    By Cat Elsby

    For the Courier

    For the locals, by the locals — that was the vision of owners Jason Reinhardt and Andy Nelson when they decided to open a brewery, Locavore Beer Works, in Littleton.

    The aim of Locavore, which opened its doors on Saturday, Nov. 15, is to support local businesses as much as possible and promote local companies, Reinhardt said. Names of the brewery’s business partners appear on the beer menu, and the tables were made by a local craftsman.

    Local ingredients

  • Jefferson County’s 2014 funding for EDC will have strings attached

    The Jeffco Economic Development Corp. is about to have a $300,000 funding agreement with the county finalized this week. 

    The contract was delayed while the county commissioners and the EDC clarified two new provisions requiring the economic development group to submit a work plan for approval and to present quarterly reports to the commissioners. 

  • Economic development group has new plan to get help from county

    The Jeffco Economic Development Corp. has received positive feedback on a proposal to partner with the county on an initiative to identify real estate available for economic development.

    The EDC is seeking a shared-services agreement to identify those properties and work to turn them into potential sites for business expansion. 

  • Foreclosures continue to decline in Jeffco

    Jeffco’s housing market continued its upward trend in 2013, as the county saw the largest year-to-year drop in foreclosures. 

    The county had 1,303 foreclosures start in 2013, a 51 percent drop from the 2,650 foreclosures started in 2012. Jeffco’s 2013 foreclosure numbers were down by 2,724 since the height of the foreclosure crisis in 2009.

    Jeffco Public Trustee Margaret Chapman said during a Jan. 28 briefing that while deferment programs across the country have been widely touted, they’ve had a limited impact in Jeffco. 

  • An idea was brewing

    It’s fitting that 38 State Brewing, a soon-to-open microbrewery in south Littleton, found a home in an old automotive garage. 

    The brewery has its origins in co-owners Mike and Kim Keating’s own garage a few years ago. 

    “On the weekends, Brett (Blazek) and I would make beer as often as we could, and then we’d run out. Jason (Virzi) would come over and help us drink it all,” Mike Keating said. “We’d make beer until midnight. Brett’s wife would call and yell at us if we were going too late.” 

  • Many hotels not high on legalized pot

    When it comes to legalized marijuana in Colorado, one area lodging establishment considers it a blessing, while another considers it a curse. For several others, it’s not an issue at all.

    The Cliff House Lodge in Morrison still bans tobacco smoking in its cottages, but there’s no problem for marijuana smokers. In contrast, the Comfort Suites at El Rancho doesn’t allow smoking of any kind in its rooms, and it’s fining a fair number of violators since smoking recreational marijuana became legal in Colorado on Jan. 1.

  • Lockheed Martin selected for study related to manned Mars mission

    The human journey to Mars may start in Jeffco. 

    Lockheed Martin Corp.’s South Jeffco-based division has been selected by Mars One, a Netherlands-based nonprofit, for a $250 million mission concept study.

    The project will study the feasibility of adapting Lockheed Martin’s Phoenix Mars rover for a 2018 mission to Mars. The Phoenix lander was originally built, designed and operated by Lockheed Martin for NASA’s mission to Mars in 2008.

  • Young entrepreneurs find winning niches

    If the two winners of Littleton’s Youth in Government competition are any indication, the city’s economic future is in good hands.

    And the future is all about technology.

    Garrett Daly, a senior at Arapahoe High School, and Vanessa Weikel, a junior at Heritage High School, took the top two places respectively in this year’s Youth in Government competition. The competition had 15 students from Littleton design a business concept to operate out of their homes. 

  • Two restaurants close doors

    Littleton diners have two fewer choices when it comes to eating out around town. 

    Champps restaurant, in the Aspen Grove Shopping Center, and Hops Grill and Brewery, on West Bowles Avenue near Wadsworth Boulevard, have closed. 

    Champps, a national chain that had been based in Littleton until a few years ago, closed all three of its Colorado locations last month. The Aspen Grove restaurant opened in 2002.