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A few years ago, it may have seemed impossible for local Colorado communities to share different ideas.

But now, nearby cities and towns are more than willing to learn, as well as share how to better a given community, said Chelsea Rosty, the City of Montrose’s director of business innovation.

“We’ve turned a corner (because of) some great leadership from our community on working with partnership communities, and understanding what’s being successful for them,” Rosty said.

An upcoming workshop hosted by Downtown Colorado, Inc. is intended to build those joint efforts between locals cities. The Western Slope Reinvestment and Redevelopment Symposium (WSRRS) series: Deal Making with Urban Renewal, is scheduled from 8:45 a.m. - 4 p.m., Tuesday, Sept. 17, at the Montrose Pavilion, 1800 E. Pavilion Drive.

The workshop is open to the public.

“DCI is proud to partner with our Western Slope members to facilitate the Reinvestment and Redevelopment Symposium Series,” Downtown Colorado Inc. Executive Director Katherine Correll said in a press release. “As a Colorado native, I am proud to be a part of the effort to reuse land and buildings and maintain more of our green spaces in the effort to create walkable, sustainable, and economically viable communities.”

Downtown Colorado, Inc. is a non-profit organization that works to better communities by assisting downtowns, commercial districts and town centers in within the state, according to its website.

The upcoming workshop will help attendees understand the redevelopment processes and the financial elements of urban renewal projects. It’ll also include detailed information into how urban renewal can address brownfield, historic buildings and housing projects.

These areas of discussion will be an opportunity for the Montrose Urban Renewal Authority board to have “advanced training” since its a newer group, said Rosty.

“They’re just now learning things about deal-making and distributing funds,” she said.

“... Through this training, we’ll be able to provide those skills to them and make them feel confident that they are making decisions that are sound, transparent and good for the community.”

The workshop will also be a chance for other communities to see some of Montrose’s successes, Rosty said.

City staffers aren’t strangers to the WSRRS, having attended its first workshop earlier this year in Durango.

Rosty said both Montrose and Durango people were able to glean information from each other. Additionally, Ridgway, as well as a few Front Range cities, provided ideas on how to refine Montrose, she added.

For Montrose, one goal is to fill up the area near the newly-built Colorado Outdoors project. Rosty said for that to be possible, it’ll come down to having a successful development that residents would enjoy and use.

“However we can reach that goal through this training and collaboration of partnerships, that’s what we want to do,” she said.

Workshop costs vary; for more information and to register, visit

Andrew Kiser is the Montrose Daily Press’ sports/business writer. Follow him on Twitter @andrew_kpress.

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