DENVER (CBS4) - The brand new Union Station is officially open. It boasts new restaurants, shops and a hotel. One of the goals of the renovation is to move Denver into the next century with the latest in transit technology, but the new station is also transforming the neighborhood.
A successful grand opening Saturday afternoon was what developers were expecting and local business owners were hoping for. They are hoping it's a sign of what's to come
With a fresh new look, developers expect business will be good. They're anticipating 200,000 people will pass through Union Station every day by 2030.
Dana Crawford was one of several behind the project and sees big growth in the future, especially for surrounding areas.
PHOTO GALLERY: The New Union Station
"There are 3,500 apartment units under construction, two hotels, a big grocery store; that whole area out there (Platte Valley area) is going to be like an extension of downtown," Crawford said.
That idea has business owners looking for space nearby. Brent Elliot, vice president of Ink Coffee, just opened a new location directly across from the transit hub. He's confident their new home will bring in big business.
"The excitement of the area, the newness of the area, and really what's going on around here where there's going to be thousands of people down here every day," Elliot said.
In just its first day that proved to be true, already bringing new life to an area of Denver that for years had gone without.
"In a lot of the ways this is back to the future, because this used to be the big hub for transit in our city," Crawford said.
It's a stop for trains, buses and light rail; and in just two more years that will reach Denver International Airport, which they expect will bring in even more visitors.
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