New Denver fund would give local business districts a boost


A business improvement district, or BID, can mean a big economic boost for a commercial area.

Over three decades, the Cherry Creek North BID has allowed the area to “compete nationally and internationally, to advocate for its constituents, to finance and build its own streetscape improvements,” Cherry Creek North BID President and CEO Julie Underdahl said in a press release touting a new joint initiative with City Hall.

Denver wants to help bolster emerging city business improvement districts with a new fund aimed at providing the last bit of money organizations need to launch a district. So, Mayor Michael Hancock and local business leaders announced the $200,000 Denver BID Revolving Loan Fund late last week.

“BIDs have a transformative impact on their communities, which is why I’m creating this new funding opportunity to provide the financial assistance that emerging BIDs need to get across the finish line and begin making improvements that better serve their customers and communities,” Hancock said in the news release.

A BID is a collective of business owners in an area or neighborhood who agree to an additional tax or fee to aid in development and promotion of the commercial area.

The new program will focus on organizations that have an initial financial investment and are ready to create a BID in the near future, but need help with funds for creation efforts. Organizations will have to have matching funds to be eligible for a city loan.

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