DENVER – December 17, 2019 – Colorado Creative Industries (CCI) today announced the five-year certification of three new Creative Districts in Durango, Loveland and Sterling.
In addition, 40 West Arts District Lakewood, Downtown Colorado Springs Creative District, Greeley Creative District, Downtown Longmont Arts and Entertainment District and RiNo Art District were approved for recertification.
“The economic impact of Colorado’s creative industries is profound, representing 4.4 percent of the state’s GDP,” said Betsy Markey, executive director of the Colorado Office of Economic Development and International Trade. “Investing in and supporting the arts provides a strong foundation for places where people want to live, work and visit. With 26 certified districts in Colorado, our creative industries continue to benefit Colorado communities.”
A review panel evaluated applications and selected three finalists for a site visit. Each application is reviewed on district characteristics, management and planning, and community buy-in. Districts must meet a rigorous set of minimum standards in order to achieve certification to include recognition by local government, a high concentration of creative organizations and businesses, sustainable funding sources, paid staff and a strategic plan.
The three newly certified districts will join the 23 existing Colorado Creative Districts: 40 West Arts District Lakewood, Breckenridge Creative District, Carbondale Creative District, Corazón de Trinidad, Crested Butte Creative District, Denver’s Art District on Santa Fe, Downtown Colorado Springs Creative District, Fort Collins Creative District, Golden Triangle Creative District, Grand Junction Creative District, Grand Lake Creative District, Greeley Creative District, Longmont Arts and Entertainment District, Mancos Creative District, Manitou Springs Creative District, North Fork Valley Creative District, Pueblo Creative Corridor, Ridgway Creative District, RiNo Arts District, Salida Creative District, Steamboat Springs Creative District, Telluride Arts District and Westwood Creative District.
“Colorado certification requirements for creative districts are some of the highest standards in the nation,” said Margaret Hunt, CCI director. “They are predicated on broad-based community engagement and support as well as each community’s authentic and unique story and history.”
Along with official designation, each district will receive an award package including financial support, technical assistance, marketing support, access to grants, CDOT highway signs and leadership training.
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About the Longmont Creative District
Designated as a certified Colorado Creative District in 2014, the Longmont Creative District includes dynamic public art, art galleries and studios, two community theaters, five music/lesson stores, more than 15 venues featuring live music weekly, (including the Historic Dickens Opera House), two dance studios, and numerous retail stores that encourage locals and visitors alike to learn, explore, and expand upon their own innate creativity through workshops, hands-on sessions, and specialty products. Creative based employers, incubators, and co-working spaces continue to discover that Downtown Longmont and the Longmont Creative District is the premier destination to call home.
About the Creative Districts Program
In 2011, the Colorado General Assembly passed HB11-1031, encouraging the formation of Creative Districts in communities, neighborhoods or contiguous geographic areas. Administered by Colorado Creative Industries, the Creative District Program encourages the formation of creative districts in neighborhoods and contiguous geographic areas for the purpose of:
● Attracting artists and creative entrepreneurs to a community
● Enhancing economic and civic capital of Colorado communities
● Creating hubs and clusters of economic activity
● Enhancing areas as appealing places to live, conduct businesses and attract visitors
● Serving as an economic strategy and magnet
● Revitalizing and beautifying
● Promoting a community’s unique identity
● Showcasing cultural and artistic events and amenities
About Colorado Creative Industries
Colorado Creative Industries, Colorado’s state arts agency is a division of the Governor’s Office of Economic Development and International Trade. Established to capitalize on the immense potential of the creative sector to enhance economic growth, the mission of Colorado Creative Industries is to promote, support and expand the creative industries to drive Colorado’s economy, grow jobs and enhance our quality of life.
About Colorado Office of Economic Development and International Trade
The Colorado Office of Economic Development and International Trade (OEDIT) works with partners to create a positive business climate that encourages dynamic economic development and sustainable job growth. Under the leadership of Governor Jared Polis, we strive to advance the State’s economy through financial and technical assistance that fosters local and regional economic development activities throughout Colorado. OEDIT offers a host of programs and services tailored to support business development at every level including business retention services, business relocation services, and business funding and incentives. Our office includes the Global Business Development division; Colorado Tourism Office; Colorado Outdoor Recreation Industry Office; Colorado Creative Industries; Business Financing & Incentives division; the Colorado Small Business Development Network; Colorado Office of Film, TV & Media; the Minority Business Office; and the Colorado Innovation Network. Learn more at www.choosecolorado.com.