Thursday, November 27, 2008

Progress Report on Colorado Officials' Asia Trip

The Rocky Mountain News had an interesting wrap up of Governor Ritter and other Colorado officials' trip to Asia.


The delegation to Asia said it made progress on several fronts, though no major business deals were signed during the trip. Some highlights:

* Colorado State University signed four agreements to collaborate with research institutions in China and Japan.

* Colorado promoted its renewable energy, tourism and biosciences industry.

* All Nippon Airways said Denver is in the running for a nonstop flight to Tokyo, with service starting as early as 2010."

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Happy 150th Denver

Both The Rocky and The Post have excellent special sections commemorating the 150th anniversary of the City of Denver. Happy Birthday Denver.

ConocoPhillips Delay

Given the state of the economy and the drop in fuel prices, its not surprising that ConocoPhillips has pushed out the opening of its Louisville campus and scaled back some of its alternative energy investment plans. Lets hope this is only a temporary delay and not a permanent change in strategy. Even a short-term delay will have negative effects on the local economy and hurt the chances of some of the proposed nearby hotel and office developments.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

United to Renew Denver to London Daily Flight

Thankfully, not all of the news out of DIA these days is about turbulence and retrenchment. United Airlines is planning to restart the Denver to London flight next spring.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

NREL Expansion Plans

The National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), a key component of the Denver region's green energy cluster, plans to grow its operations in Golden substantially as detailed in The Rocky Mountain News.

NREL Director, Dan Arvizu recently gave a presentation to congressional staffers on the role of the lab and its future plans which includes an Aerial view of what the NREL Golden campus would look like when it is fully built out. Go here to view the presentation.

Photo above is a 2007 aerial view of NREL campus. Courtesy of DOE/NREL, Credit - Patrick Corkery.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Governor Ritter Headed to Asia

Governor Ritter is headed to China and Japan to help promote Colorado as a renewable energy and bioscience hub and to lobby All Nippon Airways for a direct flight between Tokyo and Denver. Increasing Colorado's global ties is a worthy endeavor, which could lead to long-term economic benefits, even though its probably an uphill battle in the short term given today's economic environment.

This trip has been well covered by the two major Denver daily papers.

According to the November 10, Denver Post

"Colorado Gov. Bill Ritter will lead a 40-person delegation to Japan and China departing Saturday to promote direct Tokyo-Denver flights and other economic ties.

Joining Ritter on the 10-day trip will be officials from the Colorado Office of Economic Development and International Trade, the Denver Metro Chamber of Commerce, the National Renewable Energy Laboratory and Colorado State University."

See the Rocky Mountain News from November 11.

"Gov. Bill Ritter will lead a trade mission bound for Japan and China this weekend in hopes of securing a daily nonstop flight between Tokyo and Denver and to promote Colorado as a renewable energy and biosciences research hub.

The mission follows a handful of trips in recent months by economic development and tourism officials attempting to increase Colorado's visibility in Asia - and the state's chances of being chosen by All Nippon Airways for a direct flight from Tokyo."

An earlier blog entry describes the "Ascent to Asia" campaign to achieve a non-stop flight from Denver to Asia.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Summary of Possible Obama Energy Plans

The R-Squared Energy Blog provides an interesting high level summary of possible Obama energy plans. These plans could have a big impact on the Denver region.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

What Will the Obama Administration Mean for Colorado?

After the historic presidential election yesterday, I got to wondering how an Obama Administration will impact economic development in Colorado. Given the central role that Colorado's electoral votes played in last night's Obama victory coalition and the fact that Colorado is likely to remain a battleground state in future elections, the state is well poised to benefit from the incoming administration. Some of the intriguing questions which popped into my mind include:

  • Will any Colorado political figures - Pena, Ritter, etc - play prominent roles in the Obama administration?
  • How much will Colorado benefit from Obama's plans to invest $15 billion a year in alternative energy development?
  • Will a new Obama stimulus package include the infrastructure investments he has hinted at? How much will flow to Colorado? Could some of the FasTracks deficits be ameliorated by new federal infrastructure funds?