In March 2012, Gov. John Hickenlooper announced that the Longmont A & E District (now known as the Downtown Longmont Creative District) was one of the state's five Prospective Creative Districts, a designation that came with $8,000 and access to state resources. The Creative Districts program was established by the Legislature last year and is administered by Colorado Creative Industries (CCI). The program encourages the development of creative districts in communities around the state, and such districts are supposed to enhance cultural and economic vitality and serve as a focal point of community identity.
In 2014, the LDDA was awarded the formal designation from the State of Colorado as a Certified Creative District.
Thank you to CCI and Boettcher Foundation for your support on this exciting endeavor!
View these CCI Videos featuring Downtown Longmont Creative Businesses.
Beyond the Gallery - Colorado's Creative Districts.
In the summer of 2010, the Longmont Downtown Development Authority (LDDA) initiated a visioning process to create an Arts and Entertainment District in downtown Longmont. The process began by identifying key stakeholders who would serve as Steering Committee members to guide the process. A series of interviews and meetings evoked numerous ideas and imaginative solutions. Top goals, priorities, places and organizations were identified for the successful development of an Arts and Entertainment District. Based on this effort, a Strategic Report and Action Program was prepared to guide implementation strategies. This effort was led by consultants Dana Crawford of Urban Neighborhoods, Inc. and Jennifer Vecchi of Vecchi & Associates.
The Strategic Report & Action Plan was adopted by the Steering Committee in the spring of 2011. It was accepted by the Longmont Downtown Development Authority as a guidance document and was endorsed by the Longmont City Council. A committee structure was formed, including retail, events, programs, marketing, ideas, placemaking and financial development. Anyone interested in getting involved can e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Building upon existing assets, Downtown Longmont will become a vibrant destination infused with arts, entertainment and cultural activities attracting people of all ages throughout the days and evenings. Economic vitality will be enhanced by strengthening the retail tenant mix and adding urban housing – apartments, lofts and condominiums. Numerous small, well connected public and private spaces will be developed highlighting Longmont’s historic character, multicultural diversity and authenticity; these will add opportunities for increased activities, uses, events and socializing.
Main Street, as it passes through downtown, will be transformed by reducing traffic speeds and creating a pedestrian-friendly atmosphere. Placemaking efforts will enhance the image of downtown as clean safe, walkable and attractive.
Partnerships will be forged with the local arts organizations, LAEC, LDDA, City of Longmont, local businesses, colleges, schools, the St. Vrain Historical Society, the Chamber of Commerce, Longmont Area Economic Council, Longmont Area Visitors Association and philanthropists. Collaboration and partnerships will become the foundation for ongoing progress and the successful realization of an authentic identity for the Longmont Arts and Entertainment District.
Throughout the collaborative process, the Steering Committee established its top goals, priorities and places for the District.
Key to the development of an Arts and Entertainment District are the places that provide opportunities for activities, events, public gatherings and socializing.
Partnership and collaboration are crucial components of creative placemaking. Partners bring different capabilities, knowledge and views to the creative process. “Initiators, politicians, staffers, businesses, philanthropists, and arts organizations are all actors in successful artsbased revitalization efforts.” Further, “regardless of who initiates creative placemaking, potential partners must find the opportunities where interests, missions, and resources dovetail."
In Longmont, the Steering Committee has identified the following local organizations and agencies as key participants in this effort:
For a complete copy of the report, click here.