City, chamber developing plan for downtown

Initiative bears the name Downtown Matters

Joseph Rios
jrios@coloradocommunitymedia.com
Posted 2/18/20

Greater Englewood Chamber of Commerce Executive Director David Carroll is excited about what is happening in Englewood. He watched new restaurants like Zomo Asian + American Eatery join Englewood on …

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City, chamber developing plan for downtown

Initiative bears the name Downtown Matters

Posted

Greater Englewood Chamber of Commerce Executive Director David Carroll is excited about what is happening in Englewood.

He watched new restaurants like Zomo Asian + American Eatery join Englewood on the 3400 block of South Broadway last year. He has seen stores like Sarah DeAngelo Jewelry, which sells handcrafted jewelry and other products, join the Englewood business community recently.

The timing just feels right for Englewood to create a downtown action plan, Carroll said.

The Greater Englewood Chamber of Commerce and the City of Englewood have started an 11-month process to create a downtown plan for Englewood. The plan, referred to as the Downtown Matters initiative, will cover downtown Englewood, including areas of South Broadway, the Englewood City Center and areas around Craig Hospital and Swedish Medical Center. It will involve input and participation from Englewood business owners and residents.

The goal of the plan is to create an economic development tool to rebuild and reposition downtown Englewood and encourage private investment. It was inspired by property sales in the Englewood City Center area, hospital expansions, new business and development on South Broadway and new residents, according to a release.

“We’re seeing a renaissance or a new growth in Englewood. Everyone is really excited about where Englewood is going, and this just becomes a tool to embrace the things that are happening here,” said Carroll. The chamber promotes its business members and Englewood businesses.

The details of the plan are scarce as it is in its early stages, but it will look at market trends, economic development, placemaking, business support and more. Carroll said there will be a steering community committee that will meet once a month for two and a half hours. As that goes along, the committee will provide regular updates to Englewood City Council, and there will be an opportunity for residents to review the plan.

Brad Nixon has been part of the Englewood business community since 2011, when he opened Nixon’s Coffee House at 871 Englewood Parkway. He will be part of the planning process for Englewood’s downtown plan and says he hopes it will help Englewood be more small business friendly. Nixon envisions more connectivity from the Englewood Station to near Swedish Medical Center that would create walkability for residents to enjoy Englewood businesses.

“I’m a firm believer when the tide comes in, all boats rise. What’s good for Englewood does help all of us,” said Nixon. “I think people have been talking (about a downtown plan) for a few years. It just takes time. I think there is enough energy and interest around it that people can get behind it now.”

Part of the Downtown Matters initiative includes a downtown development authority that would implement the plan, similar to what other cities like Longmont have done. Longmont’s downtown development authority is responsible for developing the city’s downtown community in order for the area to attract businesses, residents and visitors. Englewood City Manager Shawn Lewis helped create a long-term plan for downtown Longmont during his time as an assistant city manager there.

“A vibrant downtown is key indicator of a healthy community; it’s our heritage and a reflection of who we are,” Lewis said in the release.

Englewood residents can learn about national downtown trends and how they relate to Englewood by attending the Thought CO-OP forum, hosted by the Greater Englewood Chamber of Commerce, on Feb. 27 from 7:30 a.m. to 9 a.m. at 1000 Englewood Parkway in the Englewood Civic Center. The forum costs $20 for chamber members and $30 for non-members.

Additionally, residents can make their voices heard by taking a survey at englewoodco.gov/government/englewood-downtown-matters. The survey includes questions about how often residents go to downtown Englewood, what brings them to the area and more.

“The whole idea is we involve the community and hear everyone’s voices in order to create (the) plan. This is an opportunity to have a voice in what happens next in Englewood,” said Marta Burton, community sales director for the Atria Englewood retirement and assisted living facility. She is participating in the planning process.

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