In 2001 ECI was selected as the Master Developer for the City of Richmond, VA. ECI created a financially feasible master plan to rejuvenate the City's downtown core and Convention Center District. The financing vehicle was a CDA, or Community Development Authority.
The Broad Street Community Development Authority is the first urban community development authority in Virginia. The CDA issued $67 million in bonds to fund significant infrastructure in the Broad Street Redevelopment area, including: removing Sixth Street Marketplace and returning Sixth street to vehicular traffic; developing and installing a pedestrian and vehicular signage system; renovating a historic parking deck at Sixth and Franklin streets; demolishing dilapidated buildings and creating surface parking lots at Sixth and Grace streets (124 parking spaces) and Fifth and Broad streets (117 spaces); purchasing and renovating the parking decks at Fifth and Marshall streets and Seventh and Marshall streets; upgrading the underground utilities; and extensive streetscape improvements throughout the CDA area, which included new sidewalks, streetlights, crosswalks, landscaping and the repaving of the streets. The renovated parking deck at Sixth and Franklin streets is one of the most historic parking decks in the country. There are actually hubcaps and the grill of a Hudson on the facade - it's quite dramatic at night with the lighting and graphics.
A second phase would include constructing a new parking deck on the Fifth and Broad surface parking lot (across for the convention center) and the Sixth and Grace surface parking lot (across for the Carpenter Center for Performing Arts) and would be funded by a second bond issuance.
The CDA improvements were completed in 2005.
ECI's creative financing concepts and unique approach to redevelopment have been the catalyst for a tremendous amount of excitement downtown. ECI's CDA project has spurred proposals for the planning of additional privately capitalized developments downtown, and complements such projects as the creation of a performing arts block and the construction a Federal courthouse.