"When we first opened up, there were a lot of vacancies," said Rogers, owner of Common Grounds. "It was a little rougher. There were a lot of bars and liquor stores."
But, Rogers says things started to change. Common Grounds became a popular meeting spot in what was becoming a trendy part of Denver. Common Grounds became the stomping grounds for presidential campaigns.
It became part of the usual routine for customers like Catherine Kerzetski.
"It's definitely part of the neighborhood," Kerzetski said. "I don't think the neighborhood even existed before this coffee shop was here, you know."
Highlands Square is now home to upscale restaurants and taverns. The area near 32nd Avenue and Lowell Boulevard has become so popular, Rogers says that's part of the reason he's closing his doors.
"The rents have definitely increased around here over the years," Rogers said. "Compared to what we're paying now, which is not a small amount; it's changed quite a bit."
Now, around the Highlands, you'll see "for lease" signs and store fronts in transition. Heidi's Brooklyn Deli is already closed, with the entire inside of the restaurant demolished.
Common Grounds will move to the Sunnyside neighborhood along 44th Avenue.
"I'm very sad," Kerzetski said. "[It's the] only coffee shop in the area. So, there's nowhere to go anymore."
Bill Kohl is a long time patron of the area. Kohl understands the change. He says it just simple business.
"It's probably a sign of the times," Kohl said. "They could probably get more money for it. So, who can blame them?"
Rogers says he will start a new history and new tradition at his new location. But, it will just take time.
"It is very sad for us to leave, but we're looking ahead," Rogers said. "We're pretty excited about moving to a new neighborhood."
(KUSA-TV © 2013 Multimedia Holdings Corporation)