Longstanding Shelby’s Bar officially closed downtown, makes way for a pair of condo towers


One last single-story building on one last stretch of undeveloped downtown Denver land will soon be razed and replaced by two condo towers.

Over the weekend, Shelby’s Bar and Grill served its last beers at 519 18th St. The building that housed the bar for 28 years — and housed other bars going back more than 110 years — is getting torn down to make way for a 32- and 38-floor condo complex. BusinessDen first reported the news on Monday.

Amacon Development, based in Canada, bought Shelby’s and the land around it last year for $8.8 million. The developer hopes to break ground late this year or early next and open the first condo tower by 2022, Mark Sheldon, a Denver-based representative for Amacon, told The Denver Post.

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Block 176 (the working name for the development) will contain around 460 residential units and up to six retail spaces on the ground floor, according to Sheldon. He said the development could include two restaurants or other food businesses, such as grocers.

Shelby’s owner Howard Nelson told The Denver Post in April that he and his wife Nanette received a notice to vacate by June 30. He said they would close a week early to “declutter” the place. The Nelsons could not be reached for comment on Monday.

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