In 2001, ECI was selected as the Master Developer for the City of Richmond, Virginia. ECI created a financially feasible master plan to rejuvenate the City's downtown core and Convention Center District. The financing vehicle was a CDA — Community Development Authority.
The Broad Street Community Development Authority was the largest urban community development authority in Virginia. The CDA issued $67 million in bond financing to fund significant infrastructure to the Broad Street Redevelopment area, which included:
A total of fifteen parcels within the District were acquired and existing buildings were razed
Removal of Sixth Street Marketplace and return of Sixth Street to vehicular traffic
Purchase and renovation of the parking decks at Fifth and Marshall Streets and Seventh and Marshall
Surface parking lots were created at Sixth and Grace Streets and Fifth and Broad Streets
Extensive streetscape improvements throughout the CDA area, which included new sidewalks, streetlights, crosswalks, landscaping, and the repaving of the streets
Development and installation of a pedestrian and vehicular signage system
Renovating the parking deck at Sixth and Franklin Streets, which is one of the most historic parking decks in the country. The design incorporated vintage hubcaps and the grill of a Hudson on the facade and is quite dramatic at night with ambient lighting and graphics.
Additionally, City funding was provided for upgrding the underground utilities
The CDA improvements were completed in 2005.
In addition, ECI's creative financing concepts and unique approach to redevelopment was the catalyst for substantial growth beyond the CDA. ECI's CDA project has spurred proposals for the planning of additional privately capitalized developments in downtown Richmond and complements such projects as the creation of a performing arts block and the construction of a Federal courthouse. The CDA created significant opportunity for the City of Richmond to increase real estate taxes in the surrounding area.