In 1954, the Stanley Aviation company set up a large manufacturing facility in Aurora on the outskirts of the Stapleton Airport to produce specialized equipment for military aircraft. The business would go on to thrive for the next 50 years; however, by the early 2000’s, the company began to decline, and by 2009, the facility sat idled and abandoned.
In 2013, the city of Aurora identified the Stanley Aviation campus as a catalyst brownfield site due to its potential to revitalize the surrounding communities.
In addition to the site being used as an aviation campus for over 50 years, the 22-acre campus had also been used as a landfill and wastewater treatment plant. These past uses contaminated the area with many polluting substances including asbestos and soil/ groundwater contaminants.
To help finance the cleanup, the City of Aurora received a $775,000 loan from the Colorado Brownfields Partnership’s Revolving Loan Fund program, as well as an approximated $525,000 of Colorado State Brownfield Tax Credits.
Following extensive cleanup and a total $30 million of investment, the Stanley Marketplace opened its doors in 2016 and serves as an adaptive reuse community hub. The center is home to over 55 independently and locally owned businesses, a collaborative office space, an event center, and a 7 acre urban farm. Over five hundred workers are employed by these businesses. The market today has approximately catalyzed an additional $100 million of surrounding development.