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Businessweek Archives

Federal Stimulus Funds Connect A Denver Housing Project

A lot of people, including Republican lawmakers who want to give the President grief, are asking, where exactly is that $787 billion passed in February through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act? Here’s the City of Denver’s answer.

The city, the State of Colorado and developer Forest City Enterprises recently jointed forces to build a new highway interchange for I-70 that will serve the master planned of community of Stapleton, which Forest City is developing.

Denver was one of the first cities whose stimulus projects were approved. Non-Denver readers may remember Stapleton as the site of the city’s old airport. The project isn’t expected to be completed until 2013, illustrating that while the stimulus funds have arguably been slow to start, they’re likely to continue to create jobs for years to come.

The complicated financing of the project—which will involve three bridges, 3,600 cubic yards of concrete and 890,000 pounds of reinforced steel—also shows why it seems like it’s taking a while for the federal funds to trickle down into real life local projects.

Of the $70 million overall price tag only $12 million is actually coming from the big stimulus bill. The largest share, $30 million, is coming from city and state sources. Another $9 million is being paid by traditional federal highway funds and $19 million is being kicked in by the developer.

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