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New Building May Soon Appear in Downtown Mancos

7/22/2022

The Mancos Common Press board of directors hopes to build a new workshop in a long-vacant lot next to the old Mancos Times newspaper building, and while they're at it, they plan to build three affordable-housing units on top. This story is sponsored by Keesee Motors and the law firm of Downs, McDonough, Cowan and Foley

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A new 4,000-square-foot building may soon fill a long-vacant lot in downtown Mancos. You're watching the Local News Network, brought to you by Keesee Motors and the law firm of Downs, McDonough, Cowan, & Foley. I'm Hannah Robinson. The Mancos Common Press is on the hunt for donations and grants to build a 4,000-square-foot complex adjacent to the Mancos Times newspaper in downtown Mancos. Dubbed the Mancos Commons, the building will include a large commons area that will house workshops associated with the early 20th-century Cranston letterpress that the group restored in 2017. A letterpress uses a drum mechanism to roll ink onto an image or type set in a wooden frame. Then it presses the paper with another pass through the roller, creating embossed images or type. They were popular newspaper presses in the early to mid-20th-century. And the one in Mancos belonged to the Mancos Times. The technology and the embossed product is popular with print artists. Since completing a remodel on the old newspaper office in 2017, the Common Press has hosted letterpress classes and hosts an artist in residence every summer. And now the Common Press wants to expand.

It's become very obvious with the love of classes that we needed more space. So we revisited our original idea of a larger workshop. And these lots have been here and been vacant for a long time. And there's always conversation in Mancos about infill and, you know, getting the town spruced up and everything. So we said, "Well, why don't we, instead of going back behind the Common Press, why don't we see if we can get those lots and go sideways?"

[Hannah Robertson] The commons building has been designed to preserve the pocket park in front of the Brad Goodwill mural called "Yesterday's News". The bottom floor will house the workshop, some offices, bathrooms, and a retail shop. The upper floor will include three rent-controlled apartments that will be offered at no more than 80% of the area median income rental levels. The group already has an option on the two lots where the building will be located, and it is raising funds now to purchase the properties. Later this year, the group will launch a $2 million fundraising campaign for the building. The Mancos Common Press hopes to start construction in mid-2023. Thanks for watching this edition of the Local News Network. I'm Hannah Robertson.

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