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Denver’s Mayor Wellington Webb contends Post Properties Inc. is not the right developer to redevelop the East Village low-income housing project in northeast Denver into a development for low, middle and market-rate housing.

Post suddenly withdrew an offer to pay $14 million for East Village, a 199-unit project that the Denver Housing Authority wants retained but upgraded. Webb also doesn’t believe that another Atlanta-based company, the Integral Group, is the right partner for DHA. Integral Group currently is in the early stages of a $65 redevelopment of Curtis Park under a federal Hope VI project. Several neighborhood leaders near East Village say they have heard Integral might step into the development void left by Post’s departure. An Integral official says the group has never discussed East Village with the city or the DHA, but would consider it if the city asks.

“Integral has its hands full with Hope VI,” Webb told GlobeSt.com “And Post is doing great with (the $100 million redevelopment of) St. Luke’s.” St. Luke’s was a vacant hospital complex before being redeveloped by Post.

“I think it is healthy for everyone involved that Post pulled out. The city is very supportive of Post, or we wouldn’t have given them $3.5 million (as a subsidy) for St. Luke’s. They are not the right developer for East Village,” explains Webb. He said East Village’s redevelopment needs to meet housing needs of working people who can’t afford to live in Denver as well as low-income residents.

“We need housing for the paralegals and the data entry people,” Webb says. “Integral has Hope VI and Post has St. Luke’s. There’s more than enough work to go around. The economy is made stronger by bringing in other developers. I suspect we’ll be getting a lot of inquiries from a lot of developers, once the word gets out.

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