Urban Renewal Authority

Partnering with the Community to Build Economic Resiliency   

Durango is changing and facing new challenges. The City and other community partners are working to ensure that we retain the things that make Durango a quality place to live, work, and play. To help facilitate redevelopment and reinvestment, the City is pursuing formation of an Urban Renewal Authority.

City officials and community leaders in La Plata County have put together a detailed organizational framework for a URA in Durango along with an overarching plan for guiding reinvestment and redevelopment. Our URA will function as the Durango Renewal Partnership, a name designed to reflect the underlying philosophy behind urban renewal in Durango. Please view the Durango Renewal Partnership Formation Plan and Supporting Documents (PDF). This comprehensive report will function as the guide for developing an urban renewal authority in Durango. The report includes: (1) an overview of Urban Renewal Authorities with FAQs; (2) an initial vision, mission statement, and priorities for the organization; (3) a list of potential activities that the URA could undertake; (4) letters and resolutions of support from partner agencies and community organizations; and (5) drafts of all of the required legal documents to establish the Durango Renewal Partnership.

Upcoming Dates on URA Formation:

  • City Council Study Session– Tuesday, February 25th at 4:00pm in Council Chambers
  • City Council Public Hearing – Tuesday, March 17th at 4:00pm in Council Chambers


The goal of an Urban Renewal Authority (URA) is to serve as a redevelopment catalyst in key commercial and mixed-use areas in order to:

  1. Strengthen the economic base by attracting capital investment in to Durango and to assist in the expansion and retention of existing businesses; 
  2. Eliminate and prevent conditions of blight which are economic and social liability to Durango;
  3. Create a stable tax base;
  4. Facilitate the development of desirable mixed-use projects; and
  5. Prevent physical and economic deterioration.

Urban Renewal Authorities (URAs) are created by municipalities to redevelop areas that are found to contain blight and slum conditions and require a public participation to attract redevelopment.  The main advantage of using a URA versus other entities to achieve these goals is URA’s offer the best package of tools and the greatest geographic flexibility to encourage investment in various location around the City.

Establishment of URA (per CO State Statute)

Photo of process to establish an Urban Renewal Authority per Colorado State Statute

URA Tools


  • Tax Incremental Financing (TIF)
  • Loan and Grant Programs
  • Owner Participation Agreements
  • Property Acquisition
  • Demolition, Clearance and Site Preparation
  • Property Management
  • Relocation Assistance and Payments
  • Public and Facilities Improvement

URA Financing Mechanisms

  • Appropriations from the City
  • Loans or advances from the City
  • Federal loans and grants
  • State Loans and Grant
  • Interest income
  • Agreements with public and private entities
  • Sale of securities and other assets
  • Property and sales tax increments (Tax incremental financing)
  • Loans and advances from other sources

Tax Increment Financing (TIF)

Tax increment funds are the difference between the property or sales tax collected in the established “baseline” year and the annual sales tax collected each year following. These funds can be used for project assistance in the Urban Renewal Plan Area. This is a powerful tool for gap financing on hindered redevelopment projects that would not be able to move forward without assistance.

Photo of Tax Increment Financing Graph for Urban Renewal Authority

TIF establishes a higher tax base that will ultimately be distributed to the municipality, county, and special districts – an amount that is significantly higher than if these properties were not redeveloped. TIF also provides a sustainable funding mechanism for facilitating desirable redevelopment projects.

Contact Staff to Get Involved:

Alex Rugoff, Business Development Coordinator

(970) 375-4855


Office: 1235 Camino Del Rio, Durango, CO 81301