10/28/2010

Revitalizing Main Street

Governor Ritter recently announced Colorado's receipt of a $1.28 million Federal grant that will "help four Colorado communities revitalize their downtown business districts through the Sustainable Main Streets Initiative. The funds will help renovate historic buildings and improve downtown walkways in the Five Points neighborhood of Denver, the City of Rifle on the West Slope, the City of Monte Vista in the San Luis Valley and the Town of Fowler in the southeast." (Read the Press Release here). Ritter signed Executive Order D-2010-007 in April to establish the Main Street program.

In recent years, many towns and communities have been focusing on their "Main Street," in other words, their primary commercial district. In many places throughout Colorado, these "Main Streets" include both businesses important to the local economy as well as significant historic structures. Main Streets also promote pedestrian-friendly, walkable communities.

If you're interested in developing Main Street programs for your community, contact the Department of Local Affairs' Main Street Resource Team. The team will meet with local governments to discuss ideas about grant funding and community revitalization. "Then, as a team, they shape their observations and recommendations into a comprehensive vision for your downtown." Main Street initiatives can help communities large and small with preservation and sustainability - which could lead to increased revenue for the local economy through increased tourism and a healthy business climate.

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