Redbarre details facility that may create 4,000 jobs
The town of Parker could become a national destination for film and television production, with more than 4,000 new full-time jobs up for grabs, if a project backed by Denver media company Redbarre becomes a reality, company officials said Friday.
At an event inside the Capitol building, Gov. John Hickenlooper, Parker Mayor Mike Waid and others joined Redbarre CEO Don Levy in touting the proposed Redbarre Digital Media & Technology Campus.
The privately-funded venture would occupy 1.9 million square feet of mixed-use space in the Compark Village subdivision in Parker.
“Redbarre could also play a big role in helping the state grow into a more mature film business,” Hickenlooper said. “When you have more films made here you have a greater number of sound technicians, lighting designers (and) creative personnel at all levels, and your standard of production goes up in almost every form.”
Hickenlooper said the Redbarre facility could be a catalyst for accelerating the state’s economic growth.
Architectural renderings of the facility show a multibuilding campus that would house retail, office, hotel and exhibition spaces, in addition to high-tech film and TV production facilities — such as multiple recording studios and a 75,000-square-foot soundstage.
The project could break ground as early as 2018 and begin operating in 2020, although site plans have not been officially submitted to Parker officials.
“It’s anybody’s guess as to when we’d start to see a shovel in the ground,” said Matt Carlson, business recruitment manager for Parker.
Redbarre’s Levy said it was a “near-billion-dollar project” and that it would include more than $750 million of new infrastructure development over the next five years. A major financing group in the northeastern U.S. is putting together “a trilogy of three major international names” to fund the project, Redbarre COO Phillip Infelise told The Denver Post.
“In 10 days we’ll be signed, sealed and delivered and then we’ll do a public announcement,” Infelise said.
The jobs created by the Redbarre facility would include hospitality, production, retail and technology positions, Levy said.
The idea for the campus was first floated to Colorado officials in 2014, Redbarre and state officials said.
However, Colorado filmmaker and entrepreneur Maurice Sparks alleged that he gave Redbarre his concept for a high-tech, multipurpose media campus after he worked with Levy and others in late 2015, according to emails and other documents provided to The Denver Post.
“They stole my idea completely and made it their own,” Sparks said, citing a business plan under his N2GO International company that called for a 100,000 square-foot soundstage, retail, tourism and other facilities.
Levy and other Redbarre executives said they had not received a cease-anddesist letter sent by Fairfield and Woods, P.C., attorney John Tanner, whom Sparks retained last week.
“He was knocked sideways by (the announcement of ) this project, which he learned about in The Denver Post,” Tanner said. “We’re still investigating and it’s my understanding that (Redbarre architectural partner) Oz also signed a non-circumvent agreement with N2GO, which is also why we sent them a ceaseand-desist.”
A spokesman for Redbarre called the allegations “baseless.”
For his part, Colorado film commissioner Donald Zuckerman said his office — which is part of the governor’s Office of Economic Development and International Trade — would not have a direct hand in developing or maintaining any Redbarre facilities.
“Our role in this would be to try to convince the legislature that for something like this to work we need more and more projects to come to Colorado, and for that we need incentives,” he said.
This rendering shows the proposed, 1.9 million-square-foot Redbarre Digital Media & Technology campus in Parker, which officials say could bring more than 4,000 new jobs to the Front Range.