Urban renewal for Manitou

       Without opposition from property owners in the area, Manitou Springs City Council approved on second and final reading Nov. 21 an ordinance that allows the formation of an urban renewal authority for what the city calls its “eastern corridor” or “gateway.”
       The decision was based on a consultants' study that found one or more blighted conditions in a survey area that additionally took in areas east of Manitou city limits and down to 33rd Street.
       Manitou Springs Economic Development Director Kitty Clemens told the council that the wider study area helps ensure that there won't be a problem if a project should be considered near the edge of the city.
       She also pointed out a study “leverage” aspect, in that El Paso County, which has responsibility for most of the south side of the avenue between Manitou and 33rd, is using the Manitou study to help plan future public improvements. Another government entity looking at infrastructure upgrades is Colorado Springs, which governs most of the north side of that part of the avenue - sometimes known as No Man's Land.
       The next step for Manitou will be appointing up to 11 authority commission members. Mayor Marcy Morrison said the opportunity will be advertised.
       Manitou has sought an urban renewal authority to streamline public and private upgrades in its east corridor, which speakers Nov. 21 described as “rundown” and “unimpressive” to visitors.

Westside Pioneer article