Colorado’s Corridor of Opportunity

Colorado continues to outperform the nation in post-recession progress, expanding its business sector, and reducing unemployment. Continued economic success has increased net migration into the state, and predicts the state’s population to grow to nearly 6 million people by 2020. According to the Engineering News Record, Colorado construction has grown by 8 percent in the last 2 years, totaling 135,500 jobs since May of 2013. The question now, amid the expansion, is how can a state maintain such prosperity and proceed with development? The North Denver Collaborative Cornerstone offers such an opportunity.

Described as the “Corridor of Opportunity,” the scope of land spanning from Denver Union Station to Denver International Airport is ripe with possibility for citizens, businessmen, and the construction industry. In an effort to provide regional solutions and further invest in the state’s infrastructure, Mayor Michael B. Hancock is heading a comprehensive multi-project development strategy.

In order to fulfill Hancock’s vision of a sustainable corridor, six integrative projects must align. These include redevelopment of: I-70 East between Colorado Blvd and Brighton Blvd, The National Western Stock Show and Coliseum, Brighton Blvd between 29th and County Bounder, River North, RTD’s North Metro, East Line, and Gold Line, and empowerment of the Globeville, Elyria, and Swansea neighborhoods. The extensive NDCC is an endeavor that indicates countless jobs for the construction industry and physical improvements for the citizens. In addition, it will entail the establishment of public/private partnerships, identifying funding options and encouraging an immense scope of investment.

There now exist strategic business plans and detailed maps for the projects, however, the actualization of these extensive proposals requires the support of the whole community. The next steps include organizing and launching a North Denver Cornerstone Collaborative Project office, implementing integration and alignment sessions, and establishing communication and outreach efforts. They expect to finalize plans and secure funding in 2015, and to have the entire sustainable corridor completed by 2023.

Mayor Hancock regarding the project states that, “what we build today will create Denver’s tomorrow. Signature development projects will strengthen our economy, create jobs, and improve neighborhoods.” What could be better than that?