North Forty News
Downtown Wellington is fixing to get a face-lift thanks to the Colorado Department of Local Affairs (DOLA) Main Street: Open for Business program. DOLA awarded $6.7 million to stimulate downtown investment in thirteen Colorado communities, with the Town of Wellington awarded $569,626 of that.
The $569,626 will be used between now and June 2022 for painting, awnings, windows, brick repair, roof replacements, new signage, and energy efficiency upgrades to 11 buildings. Businesses who applied include: Soul Squared Brewing Company, Leave it to Cleaver, Papa’s Table, Wellington Grill, The Cakery, Knaack of it Automotive, Thistle, Historic Wellington Hotel, Wellington Auction, Avuncular Bob’s TBar Inn, and Polished Spa Wellington.
“This once-in-a-generation opportunity to keep Colorado’s main streets open for business provides transformational funding now and into the future,” said DOLA Executive Director Rick M. Garcia. “Along with our partners, we are in a unique position to collectively champion community vision and build stepping stones to business and community recovery.”
MSOB supports façade improvements and energy efficiency projects for businesses in the state’s traditional downtowns with funding set aside by Senate Bill 21-252 for the Colorado Main Street program. The initiative is designed to increase sales and revenue for rehabilitated buildings, reduce energy consumption and lower utility bills, and create jobs while retaining existing ones.
A general grant round open to all municipalities, counties, and government councils across Colorado prioritized communities with multiple projects to improve visual appeal and provide a catalytic ripple effect of investment in their downtown districts. Other communities benefiting include Center, Flagler, Granby, Mancos, Rangley, San Luis, Grand Lake, Silverton, Hugo, La Junta, and Central City.
The other northern Colorado community to receive funds is the Town of Windsor, awarded $392,660 to improve the aesthetics of four buildings downtown, including removing false-fronts and increasing foot traffic in the historic downtown Main Street.
“We anticipate increased sales of 20 percent for those businesses getting façade improvements and decreased utility costs and carbon footprint for those completing energy-efficiency upgrades,” added DOLA Local Government Director Chantal Unfug.
Wellington was eligible for this grant due to its status as a Colorado Main Street community. Wellington achieved the rank of Graduate level Main Street Program in 2020, the highest level for a Main Street Program. This program has been active in the community since 2014.
“This is a rare opportunity for Wellington to make a big visual impact on downtown. These funds are put directly into our local businesses’ hands, which is exciting for all of us. We are looking forward to documenting each project and showcasing these businesses to the community. These businesses owners had to put in a lot of work early on in this process, and it is going to pay off,” shares Kallie Cooper, Executive Director of the Wellington Main Streets Program. For more information about the Wellington Main Street Program, visit www.wellingtonmainstreet.org, or find them on social media.
All of the renovations will happen by June 2022. Be aware that this may impact access to some of these buildings and downtown areas as renovations are happening. Stay tuned for stories of transformation!