In 2011, the Colorado legislature passed HB11-1031. In brief, it encourages the formation of Creative Districts in communities, neighborhoods, or contiguous geographic areas, for the purposes of:
- Attracting creative entrepreneurs and artists to a community, infusing new energy and innovation which in turn will enhance the economic and civic capital of the community
- Creating hubs of economic activity, thereby enhancing the area as an appealing place to live, visit and conduct business, as well as create new economic activity
- Attracting visitors
- Revitalizing and beautifying communities
- Providing a focal point for celebrating and strengthening a community’s unique identity
- Showcasing cultural and artistic organizations, events, and amenities
The legislation is written broadly enough to ensure that the Creative District concept is relevant to places large and small, urban and rural, well-established and new. Still, they will have things in common: Creative Districts are defined areas that include a mix of uses within their boundaries, and they are typically small enough to be walkable. All include arts/cultural assets and non-profit as well as for-profit creative businesses. Most will incorporate complementary non-arts businesses such as restaurants, offices, retail stores and housing. Districts may offer events like art walks and arts festivals. Often they will include community gathering places such as a plaza or park.