Chicago to Host a First-of-its-Kind Opportunity Zone Pitch Competition at UIC 6/19

The nation's only open Opportunity Zone pitch competition will test the market potential of sites across the country's nearly 9,000 Opportunity Zones.
By: Brownfield Listings LLC
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Opportunity Zone

Real Estate

Chicago - Illinois - US


CHICAGO - June 6, 2019 - PRLog --, the national redevelopment marketplace and project platform, in collaboration with Calumet Collaborative, is enormously proud to put on the country's first open pitch competition for redevelopment projects in Opportunity Zones (OZs). Concluding a complete day of excellent educational programming covering the essentials of capital reinvestment into real estate redevelopment projects in OZs, the national pitch competition at the Brownfield & Opportunity Zone Bootcamp will be hosted by the University of Illinois at Chicago on June 19, 2019 and precede a reception announcing a winner and awarding prizes.

"There's been tremendous interest in real estate redevelopment since the new Opportunity Zone regime burst on the stage," commented CEO Dan French. The new tax advantages afforded by the new OZ law "are a big, rare carrot that's very attractive to Bunny Q. Taxpayer with capital gains to enjoy," French added. "Before OZs, there just were not many other avenues to absolutely protect capital gains, but now businesses and real estate in these distressed communities offer a big one, potentially."

With trillions of possible OZ deal flow, a bottleneck is already emerging in the available stock of ready deals in these chronically underinvested community that can not only pencil, but can comply with tight timelines in the OZ rules and sustain for up to 10 years (so investors can receive the maximum tax break). Recent regulatory guidance will help, French said, because of a safe harbor provisions that will give developers a more flexible timeline to work through remediation and approval requirements.

Whereas investors and developers avoided legacy sites and brownfield before, because even a minor environmental issue can slow projects down tremendously, OZ may help change that and provide some additional motivation for cleanup. "Now you might want a few environmental issues," French quipped, "to buy your overall OZ project some extra time while you do some environmental investigation and remediation on the hotspot."

Asked about recent reports of some investors already throwing up their hands on OZs because they cannot find deals or can only find snake oil, French believed that "[those investors] might not be looking at OZs the way that others are and they definitely haven't seen the projects in our pitch competition coming up in Chicago on June 19."

"There are opportunities everywhere," he added, "and we're just looking at real estate." "We've had sites submitted from Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, Wyoming and lots of place in between for the pitch competition."

The Chicago BOZ Bootcamp's live pitch competition will put real people with real projects in front of redevelopment pros to judge who has the most compelling OZ investment opportunity potential.

Tickets must be purchased in advance. Learn more, submit your OZ project and register at:

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Tags:Opportunity Zone
Industry:Real Estate
Location:Chicago - Illinois - United States
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