A group of 10 national downtown-redevelopment experts hit the streets of Colorado Springs this morning, embarking on a week of tours, analysis and scrutiny.
The Urban Land Institute will use the week’s worth of findings, along with past analysis, to craft an action plan that will be presented Friday.
The group, which is being paid $125,000 for its work, will host a public information and comment session from 5 to 7 p.m. today in the Cornerstone Arts Center, 825 N. Cascade Ave.
Today’s tour route was modified to avoid parts of the Westside and fire areas, so team members will try to get a feel for the city’s core, said Rachel Beck, a consultant coordinating the ULI visit.
Today the group will tour University of Colorado at Colorado Springs campus and parts of Old Colorado City before taking an intensive look at downtown.
Bill Hudnut, former mayor of Indianapolis, is the panel’s chairman.
“There are a lot of similarities between Indianapolis and Colorado Springs,” Hudnut said. “I’m intrigued by them.”
Hudnut was mayor from 1976 to 1991, during a time when Indianapolis and Colorado Springs battled for the title of “amateur sports capital of the United States.”
“I had a strategic emphasis on sports and used sports to leverage economic demand,” he said.
In the 1980s, Indianapolis attracted several national athletic governing bodies, and is home to the National Collegiate Athletic Association.
“The NCAA is to Indy what the USOC is to Colorado Springs,” Hudnut said.