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BRIGHTON, CO-Denver land developer Craig Carlson is undertaking a 1,400-acre commercial and residential real estate development in the city of Brighton, 20 miles northeast of Denver’s Central Business District.

The Prairie Center development, which will take 10 to 15 years to complete, is carrying a $1.7-billion fully developed value. The project is located at the northwest corner of Interstate 76 and the extension of the E-470 toll road.

Brighton expects to annex the project from Adams County by year’s end. The complex eventually will have as much as nine million sf of commercial space and 3,000 housing units. The city supports Prairie Center because it will provide significant employment opportunities for its 20,000 residents, 69% of whom work outside Brighton.

As currently planned, the development is dedicating 311 acres for residential construction, 292 acres for mixed-use projects, 337 acres for commercial (offices, industrial, retail and hotels), 20 acres for schools and 339 acres of open space, 335 of which is allocated for an 18-hole golf course.

Broker R.C. Myles, one of three Fuller and Co. brokers listing the project, says the land could even house a regional mall. “The northeast corridor is way under-retailed,” Myles says. The Fuller team compares Prairie Center to 10 other business parks in the Denver area, and found that only one–the Meridian International Business Park in Douglas County–is larger, with 1,574 acres.

Carlson says the northeast quadrant is the last undeveloped submarket. It is west of dominant business parks such as Interlocken, home to Level 3 Communications, and a million-sf Sun Microsystems Inc. campus, both of which are rapidly running out of room, Carlson says.When the extension of E-470 is completed in three years, Interlocken will be only a 15-minute drive from Prairie Center. “The thing is,” Myles tells GlobeSt.com, “we will be able to deliver land to users at 25% to 50% of the cost you would find at Interlocken.

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