A coalition of Billings businesses and organizations will gather for what’s being billed as a “Corette Site Design Charrette” from 2 to 5 p.m. on Saturday, March 19, at First Church in Billings, 310 N. 27th St.
According to a news release from the Yellowstone Valley Citizens Council, the charrette — defined as a gathering in which a project’s stakeholders attempt to resolve conflicts and map solutions — will be a “community visioning session about future uses of the former Corette power plant site that would make Billings an even better place to live.”
The 47-year-old Billings plant was mothballed last year because it didn’t meet mercury pollution standards.
The outcome of Saturday’s meeting “will be a shared community vision for the site that citizens of Billings can rally around,” the news release stated.
“The site borders both the Interstate and Yellowstone River across from Sacrifice Cliff,” said Jennifer Merecki, who chairs the Yellowstone Valley Citizens Council’s sustainability campaign. “How wonderful would it be if this land, or at least a significant portion of it, would be available for public use?”
“We believe,” she added, “a variety of public uses could make this area the identity-forming feature of Billings’ ‘Montana Trailhead,’ and make the city more welcoming to travelers and a more healthy, inviting and sustaining place to live.”
In addition to Yellowstone Valley Citizens Council, sponsoring groups behind the charrette include Our Montana, Rocky Mountain College Environmental Club, Billings TrailNet, Sustainable Siteworks LLC, the Yellowstone County chapter of Montana Conservation Voters, Yellowstone River and Parks Association and Winpower West.