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New Design For National Western Complex Includes Focus On Food, Entertainment

DENVER (CBS4) - Colorado State University is working with the City of Denver toward creating a new stock show complex.

The idea is to design the National Western Complex into a year-round destination that will expand the current facilities.

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CSU plans to build three facilities focused on food, water and entertainment.

Officials announced their plans for the complex a few years ago. They expected the project would take 10 years to complete. Now, they hope to have phases one and two finished by 2024.

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CBS4 was given a behind-the-scenes tour of the facility on Monday to better demonstrate what the ambitious plan entails.

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Plans include open space along the South Platte River, new livestock centers and stockyards, along with infrastructure changes like new bridges over the river.

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CSU is also planning to build a water resource center and equine sports medicine facility on site.

The master plan emphasizes community connections, specifically people to nature and neighbor to neighbor.

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"The Globeville, Elyria and Swansea neighborhoods were a really important part of developing the campus master plan approved by the city council. We put in some of the transportation connectivity that's been lacking in this part of town. We'll have two new bridges across the river connecting this part of the campus to Globeville and through the campus to the Elyria and Swansea neighborhoods," said Gretchen Hollrah, Exec. Dir. of the Mayor's Office for the National Complex Center.

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Future phases in the building design include a new 10,000 seat arena, a new expo hall and more parking.

CSU and The National Western Stock Show Association will pay for 40 percent of the project. The rest will be paid through a tourism tax approved by voters in 2015.

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The National Western Stock Show Complex in Denver, Colorado is a bustle of both outdoor and indoor activity on January 8, 2017. (credit: JASON CONNOLLY/AFP/Getty Images)

While there will be a lot of construction happening over the next several years, it's not expected to interfere with planned events like the National Western Stock Show.

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