Last year was a bang-up year in Denver, the Office of Economic Development officially declared on Tuesday with the release of its review of 2016.
Denver’s various programs for incentives, tax credits, loans and training assistance helped 85 firms expand in the city. Those expansions led to 2,968 new jobs and more than $111 million in capital investments, the office said in a release.
Even Mayor Michael Hancock joined in to say everything was awesome last year in Denver. Only he said it in a statement, like this:
“During this dynamic period of growth for Denver, we have maintained a laser focus on propelling the powerful momentum of our economy forward, supporting diverse commercial sectors, good jobs, strong neighborhoods and a fertile climate for entrepreneurship.”
The Office of Economic Development report looks at which goals the city actually accomplished from its JumpStart 2016 strategic plan. The report will tell you OED’s supported:
- The retention of 6,892 jobs
- Bringing BP Lower 48, TIAA, 2U, Romano’s Macaroni Grill, World Wide Technology, Evo, BOARDLife, Brooklyn Boulders and eFolder.
- Commitments to create and/or rehabilitate 579 affordable housing units throughout the city
- 36 separate neighborhood development projects with Community Development Block Grant funds
- More than 30,000 individuals with job search assistance through Denver Workforce Services
- Catalytic development in Arapahoe Square by providing gap financing for the Rocky Mountain Public Broadcasting Network’s new headquarters and innovation center
- Comprehensive economic analysis to support the future creation of an agribusiness innovation area for the National Western Center redevelopment
- Efforts to foster the development of mixed-income condominium development at two separate transit-oriented development sites
- Access to contracting opportunities by growing the city’s business certification programs, with a total of 1,278 small and minority/women-owned firms earning more than $105 million from the city’s construction, professional services, and purchasing opportunities
What the report, which can be found here, doesn’t appear to say is where the department fell short — such as with starting construction on a manufacturing hub in Denver and supporting “the development of at least 600 additional affordable and workforce housing units through public, non-profit, and private partners.” Those goals have been carried over to this year’s plan, which was released earlier this year.