Reporter – Denver Business Journal
Graduate students from the University of Colorado Boulder’s
Leeds School of Business captured the Rocky Mountain Real Estate Challenge cup Wednesday with a winning proposal to redevelop the old greyhound racing park in Commerce City.
CU’s 13-member team, who dubbed themselves Buff One Development, presented details for a master-planned community at the former Mile High Greyhound Park to hundreds of real estate and financial professionals at NAIOP Colorado’s 10th Annual competition at the Hyatt Regency Denver Convention Center.
“The judges were impressed the proposal was under budget on costs and a creative idea that’s well-phased and responded well to the objectives,” said Commerce City Mayor Sean Ford.
The teams’ proposal outlined a master-planned community called Carrera, which would include an educational facility like a technical college, the already announced Boys and Girls Club, 438 apartments — including affordable units — 100 senior housing apartments, family dining restaurants and retail pad sites.
The University of Denver’s
Franklin L. Burns School of Real Estate and Construction Management’s team Genesis Development presented a plan called Wembley Square that would feature a 92,000-square-foot sports, education and performing arts complex. The complex, called the Kroc Center, would be subsidized by a $1.5 billion endowment that Joan Kroc, widow of McDonald’s founder Ray Kroc, left to the Salvation Army to build these centers in underserved communities. Joan Kroc died in 2003.
The DU plan also called for a park, affordable housing and area-specific retail businesses.
While the judges and many audience members agreed the DU presentation was smoother with video and computer generated graphics, the CU plan was more feasible and realistic.
Dennis Huspeni covers real estate and retail for the Denver Business Journal and writes for the “Real Deals” blog.
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