‘Better Blackstone’ workshops Wednesday, Thursday

Traffic along Blackstone Avenue just north of Olive Avenue.
Traffic along Blackstone Avenue just north of Olive Avenue.

An expert on community revitalization is spending a week scrutinizing the potential of Fresno’s Blackstone Avenue business corridor and will present her findings in a pair of events Wednesday and Thursday evenings.

Michelle Reeves of Portland-based Civilis Consultants has been assessing opportunities along Blackstone Avenue, conducting workshops and meeting with business owners, community leaders and government officials on behalf of the Better Blackstone Association.

On Wednesday evening, Reeves and representatives from the Fresno Community Development Financial Institution and the U.S. Small Business Administration will present information about programs to assist businesses and entrepreneurs with coaching and financing help. That session is from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. in Room 251 of the Old Administration Building at Fresno City College, 1101 E. University Ave.

Reeves will be joined by Paul Zykofsky of the nonprofit Local Government Commission on Thursday for a roundtable discussion of what they learned from their time in Fresno and present ideas for improving the profile of Blackstone Avenue as a place for merchants to do business and where residents can shop and play. The Thursday session is from 5 to 7 p.m., also at the FCC Old Administration Building Room 251.