The Downtown Colorado Springs City Center Series 2020 kicks off Jan. 22 with “Local Great Minds” — lightning interviews with people and companies driving innovation that propels Colorado Springs to national significance.

The event will take place from 6-7:15 p.m. at the Edith Kinney Gaylord Cornerstone Arts Center on the Colorado College Campus, 825 N. Cascade Ave.

Emcee Russ Ware will ask the question, “How do we design our cities, who do we design them for, and how do those design choices exclude people or welcome them in?”

Featured topics and speakers are:

Innovations in Community Health, featuring Zach Chapman and Patience Kabwasa of Colorado Springs Food Rescue; and Steve Wood of Concrete Coyote

Sustainable/Accessible Design and Engineering, featuring Stuart Coppedge, lead architect for Pikes Peak Summit House; and Christopher Liedel of the U.S. Olympic & Paralympic Museum

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Design Thinking on Housing and Affordability, featuring Shelley Jensen of Colorado Springs Tiny Home Project, and Shawna Kemppainen of The Place, a former affiliate of Urban Peak.

Doors open at 5:30 p.m. Admission is free for CC, PPCC and UCCS students with valid ID; $10 general admission; or $25 with a series pass for all three City Center Series 2020 events.

The series continues in February and April with nationally renowned experts discussing urbanism, innovation, placemaking and design, and the value and importance of thoughtful planning and design as we create a vibrant city.

On Feb. 19, Alissa Walker, urbanism editor at Curbed, will facilitate a conversation on how the ways people move in cities affect the entire community’s future.

The third event in the series, presented in partnership with Downtown Colorado Inc., features a talk by futurist and innovator Roger Brooks that breaks down tourism and economic development into practical concepts and suggestions to empower citizen-advocates.

Register for all three events at

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