Future Phases

map of national western center site with triangle site outlined in orange

Future phases of the campus (“the Triangle”) are outlined in orange.


A 65-acre, triangle-shaped piece of land on the southeast side of the National Western Center represents the future and final phases (3 through 8) of campus construction, as outlined in the master plan.

Redevelopment of this land will involve the construction of new, public event venues and related assets to round out the National Western Center’s offerings, and is expected to create a mix of uses to support the center’s global mission, serve local neighborhoods, and create jobs over the next 30 years and beyond.

With construction of the first two phases of the campus already well underway, the City and County of Denver is working with the National Western Center partners and the Denver community to prioritize the remaining phases and buildings, and identify the best method for delivering them.


Questions and Answers Regarding the NWC Future Phases/ Triangle Development

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  1. What are the facility requirements that the City of Denver is legally obligated to construct within the Triangle?

Information on city requirements and obligations as it relates to future phases can be found in Section 7(h) (Page 34) of the Framework Agreement. These provisions require the City and County of Denver (city) to work toward a plan to finance and construct future phases, allow the other parties of the Framework Agreement to propose a viable finance and construction plan for future phases, and require the city to provide land for such future phases. While the city remains committed to the vision and mission of the National Western Center in the Master Plan and the Framework Agreement, the city is not legally obligated to construct any facilities on the east side of the rail lines, nor is the city legally obligated to construct any facilities in future phases of National Western Center project, including the arena and the exposition hall contemplated by the Master Plan and the Framework Agreement.

Within the overall National Western site? Is where (on the site) they are developed or how they are developed described legally (ie size, dimensions, characteristics)? 

The Framework Agreement does not require that facilities be constructed at certain sites.  The Framework Agreement defines the arena and exposition hall by reference to the Master Plan.  The Master Plan has descriptions of the facilities on page 67.  The Master Plan is not a legally binding agreement, but rather provides planning guidance like other adopted plans, therefore locations are flexible

What is the controlling mechanism for these agreements (can we have exact legal language and citations)?

The city’s obligations with regard to future phases are in Section 7(h) of the Framework Agreement.  There are additional obligations throughout the Framework Agreement that control some aspects of future phases, such as the way land is allowed (or not) to be disposed (please see answer to Question #8 below). Additionally, some actions of the city are governed by other regulations such as city charter, ordinance, or executive order requirements.

  1. What is the environmental status and remediation plan, especially the Superfund site south of I-70 (Coliseum and lot) and the former DPS bus depot built over landfill? 

A portion of the Coliseum (VB/I-70 Superfund Site – OU2) was partially remediated during installation of the Globeville Landing Outfall; however, the majority of the site has not yet been remediated.  The Denver Department of Public Health and Environment is still in the early phases of EPA’s superfund process and are currently scoping a revised remedial investigation in accordance with an Administrative Settlement Agreement and Order on Consent with the EPA.  An associated draft remedial investigation work plan (QAPP) was recently submitted to EPA for review and the city hopes to begin the investigation and data evaluation later this year (2022).  The investigation will include data collection and subsequent preparation of a feasibility study to evaluate cleanup options.

More information can be found on the EPA’s Superfund website and within the EPA’s Community Involvement Plan Update.

The former DPS bus depot lot was a previous landfill site and was identified to have high methane levels underground.  Upon purchase of the property, the City self-imposed a covenant to limit use of the site to surface parking. It was determined that before this site could be utilized for other future uses, a methane venting system needed to be installed. This was completed in early 2020. Regular monitoring is ongoing, and results so far indicate that the mitigation measures have been effective.

Is there any consideration of the Pepsi site being included/purchased by the City or the Authority?

No. There is no city or Authority effort to purchase the Pepsi site at this time.

  1. What functions do open plazas depicted along Brighton Blvd serve, and how often?

Any assets, including plazas, depicted in the Master Plan or other maps are illustrative only. The city and Authority will be developing a new site-plan for future phases based on community and city input. Pages 74-75 of the Master Plan discuss the goals of the depicted plazas -connectivity, gathering places, and event spaces. The development of the NWC campus should contribute to accomplishing those outlined goals.

  1. What are the previous estimates of infrastructure needs and costs for redevelopment of the Triangle?

The city does not have current estimates of infrastructure costs beyond the estimates for the Arena and 1909 Building that were included in the 2021 RISE bond process. Once a detailed site plan and a public asset development program are complete, infrastructure costs will be estimated.

  1. How has the Comprehensive parking and traffic study for National Western been adjusted to TDM and mass transit options?  Pandemic impacts? How do we ensure we are not planning too much parking that goes unused most of the year?

The December 2017 National Western Center Parking and Transportation Demand Management Plan included strategies to reduce vehicular trips to the site and to reduce parking demand. The plan involved national experts on parking and travel demand management and was presented to the NWC Citizens Advisory Committee and at a public open house. The plan evaluated several scenarios that coincide with the scenarios being evaluated in the recent Traffic Impact Study. Completed in March 2020, the study considers mass transit but not pandemic impacts. It is expected to be updated once a detailed site plan and a public asset development program are complete.

  1. Utilization (or projected demolition date) and facility assessments of existing facilities:

Section 6(d) of the Framework Agreement requires that the city not dispose of any Key Facilities until and unless they are replaced by new facilities.  The Key Facilities are defined in Exhibit A to the Framework Agreement.  Demolition is not required of any facility.

  1. ColiseumThe functions of the Coliseum are intended to be carried out in a new arena. The facility assessment of the Coliseum can be found here.
  2. Hall of Education/Expo Hall – The Hall of Education is intended to be replaced by a new Livestock Center and a new Exposition Hall. The city has no facility assessments of the existing Hall of Education because it is currently leased to and operated by the Western Stock Show Association. The Livestock Center is in design with construction anticipated to begin mid-2022.
  3. 1909 Stadium Arena – The Stadium Arena is a designated historic landmark and as such cannot be demolished. The city undertook a feasibility study of the Stadium Arena and its findings can be accessed here.
  4. Events Center – The Events Center remains operational and sufficient to continue to host horse-related events. It is intended to be replaced by a new equestrian center.

Phases 1,2 facilities: (which are still proposed and which are yet to be funded?)

  1. Stockyards/Stockyards Event Center – Operated/maintained and programmed by the NWC Authority.
  2. Livestock Center – In design with construction anticipated to begin mid-2022.
  3. WSSA Legacy Building – In design. Funding will be provided and construction will be performed by the Western Stock Show Association
  4. CSU facilities – The Vida Building is complete and open; Hydro and Terra buildings remain under construction. CSU is funding and performing the construction of its buildings.
  5. Equestrian Center and Barns – Conceptual design has been accomplished. The parties to the Framework Agreement are currently reviewing funding and construction options.
  6. Outdoor Plaza – In design, to be constructed in conjunction with the Livestock Center.
  7. Livestock exchange, other? – The Livestock Exchange Building is privately owned and is currently seeking landmark designation. Renovation design is underway.

In addition to the facilities that are listed above, the city has completed horizontal infrastructure on the site, including site preparation, grading, and drainage; construction of rights-of-way, including Bettie Cram Drive and a new National Western Drive; renovation of a maintenance and operations facility; relocation of the Delgany interceptor; relocation of DRIR rail lines to the central rail location; and construction of campus utilities, including the district energy system.

  1. Utilization and facility assessments of proposed facilities:

Trade Show/Exposition Hall – SAG Study

New Arena – CAA/ICON Market Study

Public Market –  1909 Market Feasibility Study

  1. What are municipal land disposition pathways for Community Land Trusts?

The city’s disposition of land is governed by the Charter (which requires City Council approval) and Executive Orders 8 and 100.  These Executive Orders generally require a competitive process for disposition of land after the city process determines that the land is not necessary for a city purpose.

At the National Western Center, the city’s disposition of land is also constrained by the Framework Agreement.  Pursuant to Section 6(d) of the Framework Agreement, the city can dispose of land in order to facilitate the mission of the campus, as determined by the city and the Authority but (1) it must comply with the Framework Agreement and the Master Lease; (2) the WSSA has a right of first refusal with respect to any sale of the campus property to a third party for any purpose unrelated to the mission and vision of the campus; (3) sale of any property shall be no lower than the formula price that CSU is paying for its sites; and (4) the city can’t dispose of key facilities, which include the Stockyards Event Center, Stockyards, Equestrian Center, Livestock Center, Arena, and Expo Hall, or any of the facilities that are currently serving the purpose of any of the new facilities listed, including the currently used Coliseum, Event Center, and Hall of Education.

Also, the Framework Agreement addresses “future phases” of the campus, including those facilities included in the Master Plan but not built in Phases 1&2.  If the City has not initiated implementation of a plan for financing and constructing the expo hall and arena within ten years of 2017, the parties or a party to the Framework Agreement may submit a plan to finance and complete the expo hall and arena and infrastructure.  If the proposed plan is viable, City must cooperate to enter into an agreement to implement the plan for financing and construction and that would require the City to provide the land owned by the City at a nominal rate for completing the expo hall and the arena, and the revenue from the expo hall and arena would be available to the parties’ investing in the financing and construction of the venues.

  1. How has BluePrint Denver impacted the future land use/zoning in the near future? Is BluePrint Denver changing anything from the NWC Master Plan?

Blue Print’s adoption in 2019 followed the NWC 2015 Master Plan.  Blueprint’s future context and future places maps were based directly off the adopted vision of the NWC Master Plan. The use of the Regional Center future place designation was chosen to encompass both the campus and commercial functionality and destination quality of the site. The zoning for NWC was also based on the NWC Campus Master Plan.

  1. Is there a corresponding zoning recommendation with a “Regional Center” categorization?

There is not a direct zoning recommendation for a Regional Center in the Urban Center Context.  There are many options within the standard Urban Center and Master Planned Contexts and Community Planning and Development has customized zoning as an option.

  1. What is the projected growth of employment (what income level/type) at the NWC; and is there a plan for “goods producing” employees to stay in the neighborhood?

For Blueprint’s growth strategy, the city evaluated the amount of jobs/housing by place type and redevelopment potential, but it wasn’t intended to “future cast” specific areas, especially ones with unique uses like NWC. The projected growth of employment will depend on what public assets and private development occurs on the site.  The city has forecasts for construction-related jobs that it anticipated to be associated with the development of the arena and the proposed public food market at the 1909 stadium arena 1909 Market Feasibility Study.  The city looks forward to collaborating with the community on employment plans for the community.

12. Clarification on Naming rights. Who are they pursuing, who will not be allowed to pursuit naming rights. Where do the funds go to, what can they be used for?

The naming rights to campus facilities have been transferred from the City to either the Authority or, in most cases, the Western Stock Show Association; details can be found in the Framework Agreement Section 11.  Section 11 of the Framework Agreement prohibits naming facilities on the NWC campus with names associated with the tobacco industry, retailers who primarily sell firearms, the marijuana industry, adult entertainment, or organizations or individuals convicted of a felony or engaged in conduct that will affect the ability of the parties to the agreement to fulfill their functions on campus. The Framework Agreement requires mayoral approval of the proposed naming rights. Also, the ordinance approving the Framework Agreement exempted the facilities at the NWC from the naming requirements of other city-wide ordinances.  The Western Stock Show Association is reaching out to philanthropic and corporate interests for its Legacy campaign, including the naming of various facilities and spaces the campus.  As you can see in Section 11 of the Framework Agreement, the arena naming rights are to be used by the Authority to provide partial funding for the construction of the arena itself.  The naming rights transferred to WSSA do not have to be used for a particular purpose, but are being used by the WSSA to pay its cash contribution to the city’s project ($50 million) and to raise funds for WSSA’s proposed building on the NWC campus.

13. Appendix of funders for National Western, difference in arenas and spaces on layout of the development. Can any building be named to honor the communities?

To date, and pursuant to Section 11 of the Framework Agreement, the WSSA is the entity that has procured naming rights for facilities at the NWC site.  The names of spaces that have been approved by the City that are located in existing new facilities (Stockyards and Stockyards Events Center) are listed below.  Additional names of spaces not yet built but named and approved will be forthcoming. The City has not transferred the naming rights to certain facilities in future phases and would like to work with the community to identify spaces that could be named to honor the neighbors of the National Western Center.

Cille and Ron Williams Yards

HW Hutchison Family Stockyards Event Center

Bev and Bruce Wagner Family West Plaza

Nan and Hugh Williamson Entry Plaza

Stow L. Witwer Memorial Show Arena

Wagner Equipment Co. Auction Arena

Betty and Karl Bergner, Hereford producers for 50 years, Buffalo, WY Concourse

Vyonne and Jeff Keller Event and Hospitality Suite

Hutchison HW Brand West Plaza Balcony

Colette Ratcliff Grimshaw

Great Range Bison

The Del Hensel Bison Facility

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