Denver skyline on a sunny summer day, facing east. Green deciduous trees make up the foreground.

City closes on $274M revenue bond issuance, fast-tracking construction jobs and small business opportunities

Voter-approved funds support build-out of phases 1 and 2 of the National Western Center campus and the Colorado Convention Center Expansion

DENVER – The City and County of Denver today progressed its economic recovery by closing on $274 million of Series 2021A Dedicated Tax Revenue Bonds. The infusion of proceeds from this issuance to support construction at the National Wester Center campus and Colorado Convention Center projects will catalyze an estimated $10 billion in regional economic impact and support nearly 7,200 jobs over the next three years.

“Infrastructure investment has a ripple effect across multiple areas of our economy by providing good jobs to workers, who then have more ability to buy from local businesses which supports more local jobs,” said Mayor Michael B. Hancock. “Just as we’re doing with the acceleration of the Elevate Denver Bond Program, we are creating positive momentum for an equitable and sustainable economic recovery in our city.”

The economic boost comes at a critical moment for Denver, as construction employment is showing signs of stagnation. Across Colorado, more than 70 percent of jurisdictions have deferred or cancelled capital projects. There was robust and broad investor demand for these bonds, which enabled the city to secure a low, all-in interest cost of 2.91 percent.

“We received bids from a diverse group of over 70 institutional and retail investors totaling more than $1.4 billion,” said Chief Financial Officer Brendan Hanlon. “The successful bond sale demonstrates the market’s strong demand for Denver’s bonds. Denver was able to take advantage of this demand and reduce the city’s all-in cost for the repayment of the bonds.”

The $274 million sale marks the final issuance of the $778 million of revenue bonds originally approved by voters in 2015 through ballot measure 2C, when residents directed funds to two major capital projects—the redevelopment of the National Western Center campus and the expansion of the Colorado Convention Center. Measure 2C also allowed for an indefinite extension of a 1.75 percent tourism tax on hotel rooms and short-term auto rentals that was originally due to sunset in 2023. The revenues from these taxes, combined with other portions of the City’s lodgers, short term auto rental, and prepared food and beverage taxes, are leveraged to fund the two projects. The most recent bond sale contributes $175.8 million par amount for the National Western Center and $98 million for the Convention Center.