Clear Creek should become an outdoor-recreation hub


Once again David Hodge makes the case for greater economic diversity in Clear Creek County. His suggestions of high-tech industry, scientific research and university involvement are all feasible goals. Clear Creek County would be an ideal location for people and companies that interact frequently with NREL and the Colorado School of Mines.

However, there is another compelling economic model: Clear Creek County as an innovation cluster for the outdoor recreation industry. Colorado is quickly becoming the headquarters state for the that industry. See the Colorado Outdoor Recreation Industry Office:

Clear Creek County is ideally situated for outdoor-recreation companies that need to be in the mountains and close to DIA and metro Denver. The county has many world-class mountain recreation assets (road and mountain biking, rafting and kayaking, hiking, climbing, etc.), plus a mountain culture and hospitality.

What’s needed is a concerted effort to attract outdoor-recreation companies (equipment, apparel, guide trips, etc.) to the county. Once a sufficient number of similar companies/organizations arrive, an innovation cluster would be created by self-guided forces. Take a look at the Ogden, Utah, example

These ideas have been discussed before in various economic development venues. Now is the time to act.

Jim Leonard, Evergreen