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A big player in the world of entertainment and digital media plans to bring 4,000 jobs and a 70-acre campus to Parker by 2020.
At an Aug. 11 press conference at the state Capitol in Denver, Gov. John Hickenlooper, Parker officials and Redbarre executives announced plans to create the Redbarre Digital Media & Technology Campus in the Compark area just north of E-470. The 1.9 million-square-foot, mixed-use development will focus on feature film, television and digital media production.
"Something like that can be transformational," said Dennis Houston, CEO of the Parker Area Chamber of Commerce. "It's life changing, what it could mean for the town and for the region."
The company has yet to submit a site plan application, but according to Parker Business Recruitment Manager Matt Carlson, a portion of the property is under contract and the remainder of the required property is under contract with a right of first refusal, meaning the land is available to Redbarre first if needed for the development.
Carlson cautioned that nothing is official yet and that the project is still in its infancy, but added that the fact the governor endorsed the project means that all signs are promising. Carlson added that ancillary businesses generated by the studio would have a significant impact on the entire south metro region.
"Hollywood is not a monolith," he said. "Those people have to eat somewhere."
Mayor Mike Waid echoed Carlson's take, adding that retail space, office buildings and a boutique hotel would likely follow in the studio's wake.
"The uniqueness of Parker is what allows catalyst projects like this," Waid said. "This type of project lends itself to the cultural environment we've created in Parker."
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