The Colorado district council of the Urban Land Institute held a major event this past week, Denver’s first Transit-Oriented Marketplace. My thanks to Kathleen McCormick with Fountainhead Communications in Boulder for providing DenverInfill with this recap of the event:

Report from ULI TOD Marketplace

The mood was upbeat among the more than 350 people who attended ULI Colorado’s TOD Marketplace at the Embassy Suites Downtown, where we heard from some of the nation’s most experienced finance, development, and transit experts about creative solutions for transit-oriented development. Over the course of the day, we learned about the successes of recent TOD projects and innovations in financing, housing, parking, public-private partnerships, and other components that could pave the way for more development around stations in our region’s expanding public transit system.

ULI Colorado Chair Chris Achenbach opened the program with Phil Washington, general manager of the Regional Transportation District (RTD), who discussed the roll-out of the FasTracks expansion of 57 new commuter and light rail stations, a new transit development policy, and pilot programs to encourage development around transit stations. Keynote speaker Steven Goldin, director of real estate for the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (WMATA), the nation’s second-largest transit system, said transit-oriented development is complicated, and we need to simplify the message for the public to “ideas that resonate like jobs, mobility, and growth.” Another keynoter Emerick Corsi, President of Forest City Enterprises Real Estate Asset Services, the nation’s largest TOD developer, advised us to “embrace the city and neighborhood next door” by looking at development plans holistically and branding stations to create individual identify within the vision for the whole network.

I’d like to have been at all the concurrent sessions—TOD housing, parking, and demographics, and the TAP presentations on Lakewood, Denver, and Aurora—but I chose to focus on learning about innovative financing, urbanizing the suburbs, and joint development with public-private partnerships, and I came away with some great ideas.

Over drinks and appetizers in the ballroom, we checked out Great Sites Trading Floor, with exhibit materials on over 40 TOD sites at play in the region, and applauded fellow ULI members who won raffle prizes like Bronco tickets and registration to the ULI Fall Meeting next October in… Denver.

Kudos to the local and national speakers, event chairs Denise Balkas and Peter Kenney, the TOD program committee, all the volunteers, and our ULI Colorado staff.

— Kathleen McCormick, Fountainhead Communications, Boulder