Why We Exist

Urban Land Conservancy was founded in 2003 by Sam Gary, then of Gary Williams Energy, to respond to the immediate need to create and preserve affordable real estate in metro Denver. By 2002, Denver had been identified as the second-fastest-gentrifying city in the United States. Housing costs were skyrocketing, longtime residents were being displaced from historically Black and Hispanic neighborhoods, and home foreclosures were some of the highest in the nation. Sam Gary saw that Denver had a need for an urban land bank that would acquire, create and preserve community-serving real estate assets. He founded ULC for the express purpose of uplifting underserved communities and families through the use of innovative, equitable real estate practices. Now, 20 years later, Urban Land Conservancy’s mission is more relevant than ever, and our unique “in-placement” approach and innovative techniques have allowed us to invest in more than 50 properties for community benefit throughout the Front Range.

three people cut a ribbon on a rooftop with solar panels

Our Mission

ULC preserves, develops, stewards and manages permanently affordable real estate to positively impact lives and communities in Colorado.

Our Vision

ULC’s vision is for underserved populations and those at risk of displacement to be able to live and thrive within vibrant diverse neighborhoods that have physical assets and resources necessary for individuals to enjoy a high quality of life. These assets and resources include but are not limited to:

  • affordable housing
  • transportation
  • office space for nonprofits
  • childcare
  • job training
  • good schools
  • health care, and
  • other support services

Our Values

Innovative Real Estate Solutions

We welcome and skillfully leverage opportunities to be unconventional, creative and challenge the status quo in order to preserve, create and manage affordable real estate.


We actively identify and oppose racism. We support the elimination of racial inequities in the real estate market and work toward the improvement of outcomes for all racial and ethnic groups.*

Real Estate Stewardship

We preserve and manage land and buildings in an inclusive and sustainable manner for the benefit of the communities we serve.

Collective Impact

We operate with integrity, consideration, and intentionality by contributing our resources, time and focus to combat urban displacement and enrich communities through our real estate partnerships.


We minimize our impact on the environment by prioritizing resource efficiency for the benefit of the communities we engage and future generations.

Chart that describes ULC's values

*The use of any one term or phraseology lacks the nuance to fully describe the individuals or groups most directly impacted by racism, inequity, and injustice prevalent in systems of power. For the purposes of our values statement, ULC has opted to use the phrase Black, Indigenous, and people of color (BIPOC), encapsulate and name the groups with a history of enslavement, genocide, and oppression in America.