Colorado Springs, Colorado: Wikis


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Colorado Springs
—  City  —
Colorado Springs with Front Range in background

Nickname(s): The Springs
Location in El Paso County and the State of Colorado
Colorado Springs is located in the USA
Colorado Springs
Location in the United States
Coordinates: 38°51′48″N 104°47′31″W / 38.86333°N 104.79194°W / 38.86333; -104.79194Coordinates: 38°51′48″N 104°47′31″W / 38.86333°N 104.79194°W / 38.86333; -104.79194
Country  United States
State  State of Colorado
County[1] El Paso County seat
Incorporated June 19, 1886[2]
 - Type Home Rule Municipality[1]
 - Mayor Lionel Rivera (R)
 - City 186.1 sq mi (482.1 km2)
 - Land 185.7 sq mi (481.1 km2)
 - Water 0.4 sq mi (1.0 km2)
Elevation 6,035-7,200 ft (1,832 m)
Population (2009)[3]
 - City 414,658
 Density 1,942.9/sq mi (767.25/km2)
 Metro 617,714
Time zone MST (UTC-7)
 - Summer (DST) MDT (UTC-6)
ZIP codes[4] 80901-80951, 80960, 80962, 80970, 80977, 80995, 80997, 80919, 80907, 80906
Area code(s) 719
FIPS code 08-16000
GNIS feature ID 0204797
Highways I-25, US 24, US 85, SH 29, SH 83, SH 94, SH 115
Website City of Colorado Springs
Second most populous Colorado city
image seal =

Colorado Springs is a Home Rule Municipality that is the county seat and most populous city of El Paso County, Colorado, United States. It is located just east of the geographic center of the state and 61 miles (98 km) south of the Colorado State Capitol in Denver. At 6,035 feet (1839 meters) the city sits over one mile above sea level, though some areas of the city are significantly higher. Colorado Springs is situated near the base of one of the most famous American mountains, Pikes Peak, at the eastern edge of the southern Rocky Mountains.

With an estimated population of 380,307 in 2008, it is the second most populous city in the state of Colorado, following behind Denver, and the 48th most populous city in the United States[5], while the Colorado Springs Metropolitan Statistical Area had an estimated population of 617,714.[6] The city covers 186.1 square miles, making it Colorado's largest city in area. Colorado Springs was selected as the No. 1 Best Big City in "Best Places to Live" by Money magazine in 2006,[7] and placed number one in Outside Magazine's 2009 list of America's Best Cities.[8] However, by 2010, the city was in such dire economic straits that its city government made deep cuts to many services, including public safety (fire and police) and parks and recreation.[9]




General Palmer, city founder

Statue of General William Palmer in front of Palmer High School.
The Antlers

Colorado Springs was founded on July 31, 1871 by General William Palmer, with the intention of creating a high-quality resort community, and was soon nicknamed "Little London" because of the many English tourists who came. Nearby Pikes Peak and the Garden of the Gods made the city's location a natural choice.

Within two years his flagship resort the Antlers Hotel opened, welcoming U.S. and international travelers as well as health-savvy individuals seeking the high altitude and dry climate, and Palmer's visions of a thriving, quality resort town were coming true. Soon after, he founded the Denver & Rio Grande Railroad, a critical regional railroad. He maintained his presence in the city's early days by making many grants or sales of land to civic institutions. Palmer and his wife saw Colorado Springs develop into one of the most popular travel destinations in the late 1800s United States.

The town of Palmer Lake and a geographic feature called the Palmer Divide (and other more minor features) are named after him, and a bronze sculpture of Palmer on a horse is prominently displayed downtown in front of Palmer High School, at the center of a busy intersection.

Old Colorado City and the Pikes Peak Gold Rush

The Pioneers Museum (old court house) contains displays of the city's founding and history.

Colorado Springs' present downtown location, where General Palmer first founded the city, was partly due to Palmer's dislike of nearby rough-and-ready Colorado City (now called Old Colorado City, and not to be confused with present-day Colorado City) and its many saloons. Palmer ensured his new planned city stayed alcohol free by buying a huge tract of land to the east of Colorado City. Legally, Colorado Springs stayed dry until the end of Prohibition in 1933, but practically, alcohol was readily available. Conveniently located druggists advertised whiskey, ale, stout and beer for "medicinal purposes."

In its earliest days of 1859–1860, Colorado City was a major hub for sending mining supplies to South Park, where a major strike in the Pike's Peak Gold Rush was found. After the Cripple Creek gold discovery in 1891, ore mills in Colorado City processed much of the gold ore at the Golden Cycle Mill using Palmer's railroads. The affluent, who made money from the gold rush and industry, did not stay in Colorado City but built their large houses in the undeveloped downtown area of Colorado Springs (i.e. Wood Ave.). Early pictures show several large stone buildings like Colorado College, St. Mary's, the library, and the county courthouse sitting in large empty plains. This is unique during this period, to pre-build a city's civic infrastructure in stone with wide streets laid out before there was a population to justify the expense.

Colorado City remained the county seat of El Paso County until 1873, when the courthouse moved to Colorado Springs. Colorado City was the location of a 1903 labor strike that spread to Cripple Creek and eventually led to the Colorado Labor Wars.[10]

W. S. Stratton, early benefactor

In 1891, Winfield Scott Stratton discovered and developed one of the richest gold mines on earth in the nearby Cripple Creek and Victor area, and was perhaps the most generous early contributor to those communities and to Colorado Springs.

After he made his fortune he declined to build a mansion as the other gold rush millionaires were doing; instead, in later years, he lived in a house in Colorado Springs he had built when he was a carpenter in pre-gold days.

In Colorado Springs, he funded the Myron Stratton Home for housing itinerant children and the elderly, donated land for City Hall, the Post Office, the Courthouse (which now houses the Pioneer Museum), and a park; he also greatly expanded the city's trolley car system and built the Mining Exchange building, and gave to all three communities in many other ways, great and small.

As Stratton's generosity became known, he was also approached by many people looking for money, and he became reclusive and eccentric in his later years.

Spencer Penrose, early benefactor

Spencer Penrose also made his mark on Colorado Springs in its early years—though not until two decades after its founding. Penrose started as a ladies-man and an adventurer. After making a fortune in the gold fields of nearby Cripple Creek in the 1890s, he married Julie Villiers Lewis McMillan, and settled down.

Penrose used his wealth to invest in other national mineral concerns and financed construction of the Broadmoor Hotel, the Cheyenne Mountain Zoo, the Will Rogers Shrine of the Sun, the Pikes Peak Highway, what is now known as Penrose-St Francis Health Services, and established the El Pomar Foundation, which still oversees many of his contributions in Colorado Springs today.

End of the Colorado Gold Rush and the start of health tourism

The flow of gold and silver ebbed as the decades passed, and Colorado City's economic fortunes faded with it; the miners and those who processed the ore left or retired. Because of the healthy natural scenic beauty, mineral waters, and extremely dry climate, Colorado Springs became a tourist attraction and popular recuperation destination for tuberculosis patients. The healthy waters in Colorado Springs contained so much natural fluoride that some peoples’ teeth developed Colorado Stain. In 1909, Dr. Frederick McKay of Colorado Springs discovered the Colorado Stain connection and that a little fluoride added to water would prevent cavities, according to the permanent health exhibit at the Pioneers Museum. On June 14, 1950 Colorado Springs annexed Roswell which was founded in 1888 by coal miners and became a neighborhood. Other locations such as Austin Bluffs, Broadmoor, Woodman Valley, Pikeview, Papeton, Knob Hill, Ivywild, Stratton Meadows, Stratmoor, Elsmare, Cimarron Hills, Kelker, Stratmoor Hills, La Foret, Gleneagle, Skinners, and Colorado City (now called Old Colorado City) became part of Colorado Springs. Old Colorado City is located on the west side of Colorado Springs and is a historic district and on the National Register of Historic Places. Its old Victorian brick buildings and main street currently offer several tourist, boutique, and antique shops.

Latter 20th century military boom

Colorado Springs saw its first military base in 1942 shortly after Pearl Harbor was attacked. During this time the U.S. Army established Camp Carson near the southern borders of the city in order to train and house troops in preparation for World War II. It was also during this time that the Army began using Colorado Springs Municipal Airport. It was renamed Peterson Field and used as a training base for heavy bombers (the airport and base still share parts of the flightline).

Hi-res Kodachrome of downtown Colorado Springs, 1951.

The Army expanded Camp Carson, a venture that increased growth in Colorado Springs and provided a significant area of industry for the city. Camp Carson was named for the Army scout General Christopher "Kit" Carson, who explored the vast western frontier during the 1800s.[11] After World War II the military stepped away from the Springs, Camp Carson was declining and the military was activating and deactivating Peterson Field irregularly. That all changed when the Korean War erupted. Camp Carson, which had declined to only 600 soldiers, was revitalized along with many other parts of the Springs. In 1951, the United States Air Defense Command moved to Colorado Springs and opened Ent Air Force Base (named for Major General Uzal Girard Ent, commander of the Ninth Air Force during World War II).

After the Korean War, Peterson Field was renamed Peterson Air Force Base and was permanently activated. In 1954 Camp Carson became Fort Carson, Colorado Springs' first Army post. Later that same year, President Dwight D. Eisenhower selected Colorado Springs, out of 300 other sites around the nation, to be the site of the United States Air Force Academy. A new and growing Army post, an Air Force Base, and the Air Force's military academy together jump-started Colorado Springs' growth.

The military boom continued and in 1963, NORAD's main facility was built in Cheyenne Mountain. This placed NORAD directly next to Colorado Springs and permanently secured the city's military presence. During the Cold War the city greatly expanded due to increased revenue from various industries and the prevailing military presence in the city. In the mid 1970s, Ent Air Force Base was shut down and later converted into the United States Olympic Training Center. Military presence was further increased in 1983 with the founding of Falcon Air Force Base (later changed to Schriever Air Force Base), a base primarily tasked with missile defense and satellite control. Fort Carson and Peterson are still growing and continue to contribute to the city's growth. Air Force Space Command is located on Peterson AFB.


Pikes Peak, the Eastern-most 14er in the United States.


According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 186.1  square miles (482.1 km²), of which 185.7 square miles (481.1 km²) is land and 0.4 square mile (1.0 km²) (0.21%) is water.


Colorado Springs features a steppe climate. The city receives 17.4 inches of annual precipitation. Average snowfall for the area (included in the previous annual precipitation calculation) is 44.6" total: 3.7" in October, 6.2" in November, 6.7" in December, 5.4" in January, 5.1" in February, 9.4" in March, 6.3" in April, and 1.3" in May. Due to unusually low precipitation for the past few years before 2006, Colorado Springs has had to enact lawn water restrictions. Average January low and high temperatures are 14°F/ 42°F (-10°C/ 5.5°C) and average July low and high temperatures are 55°F/ 85°F (12.7°C/ 29.4°C). Colorado Springs has relatively mild winters, with large snow accumulations in the downtown area relatively rare, a strong warming sun due to the altitude, and only occasional episodic periods of sub-zero cold snaps and blizzards from October 31 to March/April. The hottest temperature ever recorded in Colorado Springs was 101°F (38.3°C) on June 7, 1874 and the coldest temperature ever recorded was -32°F (-35.5°C) on January 20, 1883. Although the coldest average monthly high temperature of the year in Colorado Springs has historically been January, in recent years December has had a colder average monthly high temperature [12].

Colorado Springs is also one of the most active lightning strike areas in the United States. This natural phenomenon led Nikola Tesla to select Colorado Springs as the preferred location to build his lab and study electricity.

Climate data for Colorado Springs, Colorado
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °F (°C) 73
Average high °F (°C) 41.7
Average low °F (°C) 14.5
Record low °F (°C) -32
Precipitation inches (mm) 0.28
Snowfall inches (mm) 5.1
Avg. snowy days 5.1 4.4 5.9 4.0 0.8 0 0 0 0.4 1.8 4.0 5.0 31.4
Avg. precipitation days 4.7 4.4 7.5 8.7 10.7 9.9 12.2 13.4 7.5 5.1 5.0 5.0 94.1
Source: The Weather Channel[13] September 2008
Source #2: NCDC[14] February 2010


Historical populations
Census Pop.  %±
1870 1,480
1880 4,226 185.5%
1890 11,140 163.6%
1900 21,085 89.3%
1910 29,078 37.9%
1920 30,105 3.5%
1930 33,237 10.4%
1940 36,789 10.7%
1950 45,472 23.6%
1960 70,194 54.4%
1970 135,060 92.4%
1980 214,914 59.1%
1990 281,140 30.8%
2000 360,890 28.4%
Est. 2009 414,658 14.9%

The United States Census Bureau estimates that in 2008 the population of the City of Colorado Springs was 380,307,[3] (47th most populous U.S. city),[3] the population of the Colorado Springs Metropolitan Statistical Area was 617,714 (84th most populous MSA),[6] and the population of the Front Range Urban Corridor was 4,166,855.[citation needed]

Military impact on diversity: The diversity of the military populations has had a lasting impact on the ethnic and racial makeup of the Colorado Springs area. Residents with military backgrounds, including retirees and former dependents, come from a much broader population with wide-ranging backgrounds, ethnicities, international experiences and connections, bringing a diversity which would otherwise not be seen in the region.[citation needed]

Impact of Non-military Hispanic and European Immigration: Earlier influxes of European and European-American settlers of largely German, Irish and Italian heritage as well as an ongoing influx of Hispanic immigrants primarily of Mexican and Central American heritage have also helped to increase diversity of the region.[citation needed]

Native American population: Although comprising less than 1% of the current population, the local Native American population has links to the area going back thousands of years. Originally one of the homes of the Ute Indian Nation, descendants of Ute heritage continue to reside in greater Colorado Springs.[citation needed]

As of the census[16] of 2000 (limited only to the city limits and not including the very diverse Fort Carson area which many view as being a part of the Colorado Springs metropolitan area), there were 360,890 people, 141,516 households, and 93,117 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,942.9 people per square mile (750.2/km²). There were 148,690 housing units at an average density of 800.5/sq mi (309.1/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 80.66% White, 6.56% African American, 0.88% Native American, 2.82% Asian, 0.21% Pacific Islander, 5.01% from other races, and 3.85% from two or more races. 12.01% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.

There were 141,516 households out of which 34.0% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 51.5% were married couples living together, 10.6% had a female householder with no husband present, and 34.2% were non-families. 27.0% of all households were made up of individuals and 6.9% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.50 and the average family size was 3.06.

In the city the population was spread out with 26.5% under the age of 18, 10.3% from 18 to 24, 32.8% from 25 to 44, 20.8% from 45 to 64, and 9.6% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 34 years. For every 100 females there were 97.8 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 95.2 males.(Note: City statistics do not include the demographic influence of five local military bases).

The median income for a household in the city was $45,081, and the median income for a family was $53,478. Males had a median income of $36,786 versus $26,427 for females. The per capita income for the city was $22,496. About 6.1% of families and 8.7% of the population were below the poverty line, including 10.8% of those under age 18 and 7.2% of those age 65 or over.


City Hall.

Colorado Springs is a Council-Manager government, with a Mayor and City Council that meets regularly to approve budgets, enact ordinances, and rule on land use, and a city manager who deals with the day-to-day aspects of running the city.[17] The mayor is elected in a citywide vote. The city council consists of the mayor and eight additional members, four of whom are elected from districts and four who are elected at large. Both council members and the mayor are elected to four year terms and may serve two terms in both positions. A vice mayor is elected by council members from within their ranks.

Current Issues

In order to combat the nearly $38 million budget shortfall projected in 2010 caused by current economic conditions resulting in decreased sales taxes, a proposal to increase property taxes by 10 million over 5 years was approved for the November 2009 ballot by the city council on August 25, 2009. It was strongly opposed throughout the campaigning and issue 2C was voted down on November third. An attempt to reform the city's Taxpayers Bill of Rights (TABOR) was considered but not put on the ballot.[18] As a result the city reduced fire and police jobs, stopped paving roads, eliminated evening and weekend bus service, reduced public trash control, and asked residents to mow the grass in their neighborhood parks.[19]


Colorado Springs' economy is driven primarily by the military, the high-tech industry, and tourism, in that order. The city is currently experiencing some growth mainly in the service sectors.

Defense Industry

The defense industry plays a major role in the Colorado Springs economy, with some of the city's largest employers coming from the sector.[20] A large segment of this industry is dedicated to the development and operation of various projects for missile defense. With its close ties to defense, the aerospace industry has also influenced the Colorado Springs economy. Although some defense corporations have left or downsized city campuses, a slight growth trend is still recorded.

Significant defense corporations in the city include Boeing, General Dynamics, Harris Corporation, ITT, L-3 Communications, Lockheed Martin, and Northrop Grumman.

High-tech industry

A large percentage of Colorado Springs' economy is still based on manufacturing high tech and complex electronic equipment. The high tech sector in the Colorado Springs area has decreased its overall presence over the past six years (from around 21,000 down to around 8,000), with notable reductions in information technology and complex electronic equipment.[21] Due to a slowing in tourism, the high tech sector still remains second to the military in terms of total revenue generated and employment.[22] Current trends project the high tech employment ratio will continue to decrease in the near future.[22][23][24][25]

High tech corporations with connections to the city include:

  • Verizon Business – Software development - Formerly WorldCom and MCI, has a fairly large engineering presence. At its peak during the mid to late 1990s, with over 5,000 employees and currently has nearly 1300 employees in 2008.[26]
  • Hewlett-Packard – Computing – large sales, support, and SAN storage engineering center. The location was built by Digital Equipment Corporation, renamed Compaq in the 1998 acquisition of Digital, and finally renamed Hewlett-Packard after the 2002 merger. Nearly 1000 positions will be transferred out of the Springs[27][28][29]
  • SNIA – Computing - home of the SNIA Technology Center
  • Agilent – Test and Measurement Manufacturing - In 1999, Agilent was spun off from HP as an independent, publicly-traded company.
  • Intel– Currently idled with 250 employees, down from 1000 employees in 2007[30]
  • Atmel – Chip fabrication. Formerly Honeywell. Recently laid off 245 workers and will shut down in 2009.[31]
  • Cypress Semiconductor Colorado Design Center – Chip fabrication R&D site
  • Sanmina-SCI Closing facility around December 2007 to January 2008 (800 jobs).[32]

Military Installations

The United States Military plays a very important role in the city. Colorado Springs is home to both Army and Air Force bases. All these military installations border the city, to the north, south and east, excluding Schriever Air Force Base, which is located east of the city in El Paso County.

Fort Carson

Fort Carson is the city's largest military base, and until mid-2006 was home to the 3d Armored Cavalry Regiment, which relocated to Fort Hood, Texas. By 2009, Fort Carson will be the home station of the 4th Infantry Division, which will nearly double the base's population. Fort Carson is host to various training grounds for infantry, armor, and aviation units (specifically the OH-58 Kiowa Warrior). Fort Carson is also the headquarters of the second and third battalions of the 10th Special Forces Group.

Peterson Air Force Base

AFSPC Headquarters, Peterson AFB, Colorado Springs.

The Air Force has critical aspects of their service based at Colorado Springs which carry on missile defense operations and development. The Air Force bases a large section of the national missile defense operations here, with Peterson Air Force Base set to operate large sections of the program. Peterson AFB is currently the headquarters of the majority of Air Force Space Command and the operations half of Army Space and Missile Defense Command/Army Strategic Command (SMDC/ARSTRAT).

Peterson is also headquarters for the United States Northern Command (USNORTHCOM), one of the Unified Combatant Commands. USNORTHCOM directs all branches of the U.S. military operations in their area of responsibility which includes the continental United States, Alaska, Canada, and Mexico. In the event of national emergencies the President or Secretary of Defense can call upon USNORTHCOM for any required military assistance. Service members from every branch of the US Military are stationed at the command.

Schriever Air Force Base (formerly Falcon AFB)

Schriever Air Force Base is home to the 50th Space Wing, which controls warning, navigational, communications and spy satellites. It is also the home of the Space Warfare Center and the home for the 576th Flight Test Squadron.[33] It is the location of the global positioning system (GPS) master control station and GPS Operations Center and the US Naval Observatory Alternate Master Clock, used to synchronize GPS satellite time. Schriever is also developing parts of national missile defense and runs parts of the annual wargames used by the nation's military.

NORAD and Cheyenne Mountain Air Station

Cadets in front of the Academy Chapel

The North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD), a component of America's missile defense system, is located in Cheyenne Mountain Air Station. When it was built at the height of the Cold War it caused much anxiety for the residents of Colorado Springs. Although NORAD still operates, today it is primarily tasked with the tracking of ICBMs, and the military has recently decided to place Cheyenne Mountain's NORAD/NORTHCOM operations on standby and move operations to nearby Peterson Air Force Base.[34]

United States Air Force Academy

The north end of the city is home to the vast United States Air Force Academy grounds, where cadets train to become officers in the Air Force. The campus is famous for its unique chapel and draws visitors year round. The Air Force sports programs belong to the Mountain West Conference.


With the city located at the base of the Rocky Mountains, and its many trails and parks, Colorado Springs is a popular destination for tourists seeking scenery, rock formations and other unique geological features, like Pikes Peak, Garden of the Gods park, Seven Falls, and Cave Of The Winds.

Colorado Springs is also home to a variety of cultural, educational, and historical attractions including the Cheyenne Mountain Heritage Center, the Cheyenne Mountain Zoo, the Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center, the Colorado Springs Pioneers Museum, the American Numismatic Association Money Museum, Peterson Air and Space Museum, and the United States Air Force Academy.


Olympic sports

The United States Olympic Committee headquarters and training facility.

Colorado Springs is home to the United States Olympic Training Center and the headquarters of the United States Olympic Committee. In addition, a number of United States national federations for individual Olympic sports have their headquarters in Colorado Springs, including:

The city has a particularly long association with the sport of figure skating, having hosted the U.S. Figure Skating Championships 6 times and the World Figure Skating Championships 5 times. It is home to the World Figure Skating Museum and Hall of Fame and the Broadmoor Skating Club, a notable training center for the sport. In recent years, the World Arena has hosted skating events such as Skate America and the Four Continents Figure Skating Championships.

Local teams

Name Sport Founded League Venue
Colorado Springs Sky Sox Baseball 1988 Minor league; Pacific Coast League Security Service Field
Colorado Springs Blizzard Soccer 2004-Folded in 2006 United Soccer Leagues; USL Premier Development League Security Service Field
Colorado Rush Men's Premier Soccer 2007 Premier Arena Soccer League; National Premier Soccer League (National Division III) Security Service Field
Colorado Springs Rugby Football Club Rugby 1969 Eastern Rockies Rugby Football Union; USA Rugby; (National Division II) Bear Creek Park
Colorado Springs Cricket Club Cricket 1999 Colorado Cricket League Rose Bowl, Memorial Park
  • Colorado Springs hosted the 1962 International Ice Hockey Federation World Championships (together with Denver).
    • This nullifies a popular Canadian claim that the 2008 IIHF World Championships in Quebec City and Halifax marked the first time this event was organized on the American continent. However, the 2008 event was the first World Championship on the American continent in which NHL players were eligible to compete.

Religious institutions

Focus on the Family Visitors Center

Although houses of worship of almost every major religion can be found in the city, Colorado Springs has attracted a large influx of Evangelical Christians and Christian Organizations in recent years. At one time Colorado Springs was counted to be the national headquarters for 81 different religious organizations, earning the city the tongue-in-cheek nickname "the Evangelical Vatican"[35] and "The Christian Mecca"[citation needed]. Religious groups with regional or international headquarters in Colorado Springs include: the Association of Christian Schools International, the Christian and Missionary Alliance, Compassion International, Focus on the Family, HCJB, the International Bible Society, The Navigators, the Roman Catholic Diocese of Colorado Springs, WAY-FM Network, Andrew Wommack Ministries, and Young Life.


Today, Colorado Springs has many features of a modern urban area, such as parks, bike trails, and urban open-area spaces. However, it is not exempt from problems that typically plague cities that experience tremendous growth like overcrowded roads and highways, crime, sprawl, and government budget issues. Many of the problems are indirectly or directly caused by the city's difficulty in coping with the large population growth experienced in the last 20 years and the annexing of the Banning Lewis Ranch area for 175,000 future residents.

Colorado Springs is served by a bus system called Mountain Metro (short for Mountain Metropolitan Transit). Mountain Metro also operates the Front Range Express (FREX) service, which connects Colorado Springs to Denver and several other metropolitan areas during weekdays. Although the transit system serves much of the city and its nearest suburbs, it lacks service to many important areas and has only limited hours of operation.

Colorado Springs is served by the Colorado Springs Municipal Airport. In the state of Colorado, only Denver International has more passenger traffic. The airport has experienced a higher recovery rate in the post-9/11 era than the rest of the country[36] and is in the process of expanding its maintenance facilities, taxiways, and runways to accommodate future growth. In 2005 it served approximately two million passengers.[36]

Major highways

In 2004, the voters of Colorado Springs and El Paso County established the Pikes Peak Rural Transportation Authority[37] and adopted a 1% sales tax dedicated to improving the region's transportation infrastructure. Together with state funding for the Colorado Springs Metro Interstate Expansion (COSMIX)(2007 completion) and the I-25 interchange with Highway 16 (2008 completion), significant progress has been made since 2003 in addressing the transportation needs of the area. Currently the City is trying to overcome a $23.3 million budget gap created by falling sales taxes and rising expenses.[38]

Colorado Springs is primarily served by the interstate highways I-25 and U.S. Route 24.

  • I-25 (CO).svg Interstate 25 runs north-south from New Mexico through Colorado Springs to Denver on its way northward towards Wyoming
  • US 24.svg US 24 traverses through eastern Colorado from Limon through several towns such as Matheson, Simla, Ramah, Calhan, Peyton and Falcon until it reaches the city and leaves the city through the mountains on its way to Minturn, CO.
  • Colorado 83.svg SH 83 runs north-south from Denver to Colorado Springs.
  • Colorado 115.svg SH 115 begins from the US 50 interchange in Cañon City to US 85 (Nevada Avenue) in the city.
  • US 85.svg US 85 US 85 enters the city at Fountain and is signed as Nevada Avenue until it leaves the city at exit 148.
  • US 87.svg US 87 US 87 remains concurrent with I-25 throughout Colorado.

In addition, there were plans to develop a "Front Range Toll Road", a privately-owned turnpike, which would begin south of Pueblo and end around Fort Collins. This toll road would allow rail and truck traffic to avoid the more highly traveled parts of I-25 along the Front Range. Initially, the project had support but has since been highly contested because of the need to condemn the land of many private citizens, through the use of eminent domain, to make room for the corridor.[39]

Concerns and Improvements

In order to combat congestion the Colorado Department of Transportation widened the Interstate 25 corridor throughout the city from four lanes (two in each direction) to six lanes. Ultimately, the plan is to make the interstate eight lanes through the city when funding becomes available.[40] This plan is similar in nature to Denver's T-Rex expansion plan.

A Metro bus navigates past a parking garage in downtown.

Several suggestions have been made to create a loop around the city though none have been implemented. The original plan to convert Powers Boulevard, a major eastside expressway, into a bypass for I-25 was abandoned, although some interchanges are overpasses and roads further east are being looked at.[41] Easier access to the airport has also been suggested. Overall the new thoroughfares would include one (or two) loop freeways, a spur into the city connecting the main freeway and the loop, east-west expressway upgrades, and easier access to the Colorado Springs Airport.

Two grade separated interchanges were built in order to alleviate congestion at some of the city's worst intersections. Both the intersection at Powers and Woodmen and the intersection at Austin Bluffs and Union were converted into grade separated interchanges. A third interchange is being built at the intersection of Woodmen Road and Academy Boulevard and will be complete by 2011.

Colorado Springs is part of a consortium of cities trying to build the Front Range Commuter Rail.



Doolittle Hall on the campus of the United States Air Force Academy.

Universities, colleges and special schools include:

The city's public schools are divided into several districts:

Private schools:

Sister cities

Sister cities of Colorado Springs include:

Colorado Springs' sister city organization began when Colorado Springs became partners with Fujiyoshida. The torii gate erected to commemorate the relationship stands at the corner of Bijou Street and Nevada Avenue, and is one of the city's most recognizable landmarks. The torii gate, crisscrossed bridge and shrine, located in the median between Platte and Bijou Streets in downtown Colorado Springs, were a gift to Colorado Springs, erected in 1966 by the Rotary Club of Colorado Springs to celebrate the friendship between the two communities. A plaque near the torii gate states that "the purpose of the sister city relationship is to promote understanding between the people of our two countries and cities". The Fujiyoshida Student exchange program has become an annual event.

To strengthen relations between the two cities, the Colorado Springs Youth Symphony regularly invites the Taiko drummers from the city to participate in a joint concert in the Pikes Peak Center. The orchestra played in Bankstown, Australia, in 2002 and again in June 2006 as part of their tours to Australia and New Zealand.

Also, in 2006, the Bankstown TAP (Talent Advancement Program), performed with the Youth Symphony, and the Colorado Springs Children's Chorale, as a part of the annual In Harmony program.

A notable similarity between Colorado Springs and its sister cities are their geographic positions, three of the six cities being located near the base of a major mountain or range.[42]

Notable residents

Colorado Springs has been home to a number of famous artists, including actor Lon Chaney, members of the band OneRepublic, science fiction author Robert Heinlein, Peanuts creator Charles M. Schulz, and athletes, including Baseball Hall of Fame member Goose Gossage and NBA Hall of Famer Rick Barry and Rachel Flatt 2010 U.S. National Champion and an Olympic athlete.

In popular culture

Colorado Springs has been the subject or setting for many books, movies and television shows, and is especially a frequent backdrop for political thrillers and military-themed stories because of its many military installations and vital importance to the United States' continental defense. Notable television series using the city as a setting include Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman and the Stargate series Stargate SG-1

See also


  1. ^ a b "Active Colorado Municipalities". State of Colorado, Department of Local Affairs. Retrieved 2007-09-01. 
  2. ^ "Colorado Municipal Incorporations". State of Colorado, Department of Personnel & Administration, Colorado State Archives. 2004-12-01. Retrieved 2007-09-02. 
  3. ^ a b c d U.S. Census Bureau (2009). "Incorporated Places and Minor Civil Divisions: Coorado" (CSV). 2008 Population Estimates. Retrieved 2009-09-21. 
  4. ^ "ZIP Code Lookup" (JavaScript/HTML). United States Postal Service. Retrieved September 7, 2007. 
  5. ^ "What is Colorado Springs' population". July 18, 2009. 
  6. ^ a b "Estimates of Population Change for Metropolitan Statistical Areas and Rankings: July 1, 2007 to July 1, 2008". Retrieved 2009-10-05. 
  7. ^ "". 2009-09-30. Retrieved 2009-10-05. 
  8. ^ "Best Towns 2009 | Outside Online". Retrieved 2009-10-05. 
  9. ^ Michael Booth (January 31, 2010). "Colorado Springs cuts into services considered basic by many". The Denver Post. Retrieved 2010-02-01. 
  10. ^ Colorado's War on Militant Unionism, James H. Peabody and the Western Federation of Miners, George G. Suggs, Jr., 1972, page 47.
  11. ^ "Fort Carson, Colorado". 1995-10-29. Retrieved 2009-10-05. 
  12. ^
  13. ^ "Monthly Averages for Colorado Springs, CO". The Weather Channel. Retrieved 2008-09-19. 
  14. ^ "NCDC: U.S. Climate Normals". 
  15. ^ Moffatt, Riley. Population History of Western U.S. Cities & Towns, 1850-1990. Lanham: Scarecrow, 1996, 68.
  16. ^ "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31. 
  17. ^ "City of Colorado Springs - City Council Members". Retrieved 2009-10-05. 
  18. ^ DANIEL CHACÓN (2009-08-25). "Council's ballot proposals up for formal vote | formal, ballot, city - Public Affairs - Colorado Springs Gazette, CO". Retrieved 2009-10-05. 
  19. ^ Michael Booth (2010-01-31). "Colorado Springs cuts into services considered basic by many". Retrieved 2010-02-01. 
  20. ^ Colorado Springs Gazette
  21. ^ [1](2006-2007 Southern Colorado Economic Forum Publication pg 18)
  22. ^ a b SCEF - Southern Colorado Economic Forum
  23. ^ "A barren Garden of the Gods".;jsessionid=GSV0A5KE3CCGUQSNDLPCKHSCJUNN2JVN?articleID=196902115. Retrieved 2009-10-05. 
  24. ^ Heilman, Wayne (2008-07-18). "Colorado jobless rate at its highest since 2005 | percent, rate, colorado - Top Stories - Colorado Springs Gazette, CO". Retrieved 2009-10-05. 
  25. ^ Heilman, Wayne (2008-08-30). "Manufacturing, tech jobs slipping away from Springs | manufacturing, springs, technology - Top Stories - Colorado Springs Gazette, CO". Retrieved 2009-10-05. 
  26. ^ Wayne Heilman 09/19/08 email
  27. ^ Laden, Rich (2008-06-20). "HP PLANSTO OPEN CENTERS IN ARKANSAS, NEW MEXICO | springs, colorado, new - Breaking News - Colorado Springs Gazette, CO". Retrieved 2009-10-05. 
  28. ^ Heilman, Wayne (2008-06-25). "HP to 800 Springs workers: Move to New Mexico or lose jobs | center, springs, employees - Top Stories - Colorado Springs Gazette, CO". Retrieved 2009-10-05. 
  29. ^ Heilman, Wayne (2008-06-27). "HP to IT workers: Move to Fort Collins or lose job | move, workers, employees - Top Stories - Colorado Springs Gazette, CO". Retrieved 2009-10-05. 
  30. ^ Heilman, Wayne (2008-07-28). "1,000 Intel workers will get job-hunting help | intel, help, workers - Top Stories - Colorado Springs Gazette, CO". Retrieved 2009-10-05. 
  31. ^ Wayne Heilman (2008-12-15). "Atmel lays off 245 employees in Springs | atmel, employees, company - Breaking News - Colorado Springs Gazette, CO". Retrieved 2009-10-05. 
  32. ^ Sept 2007, Tammy Fields, Colorado Springs Economic Development Corporation
  33. ^ Wilson, Jim (1997-02-28). "The New 'Area 51'". Popular Mechanics. Retrieved 2009-10-05. 
  34. ^ "Military to put Cheyenne Mountain on standby - The Denver Post". The Denver Post<!. Retrieved 2009-10-05. 
  35. ^ "Day eight Sunday morning in the 'evangelical Vatican'". January 15, 2010. 
  36. ^ a b "Colorado Springs Airport - News Releases". Retrieved 2009-10-05. 
  37. ^ "PPRTA Homepage". 2009-09-28. Retrieved 2009-10-05. 
  38. ^ Zubeck, Pam (2008-08-16). "Cut, don't raise taxes or fees August 25, 2008". Retrieved 2009-10-05. 
  39. ^ [2]
  40. ^ COSMIX Project Home Page
  41. ^ "Powers freeway debate restarts | Gazette, The (Colorado Springs) | Find Articles at". 2006-12-24. Retrieved 2009-10-05. 
  42. ^ "City of Colorado Springs - Topic Pages". 2007-07-06. Retrieved 2009-10-05. 

External links

Simple English

File:Colorado springs
Downtown Colorado Springs

Colorado Springs is a city in Colorado, United States. With a population of 369,815 residents, it is the second largest city in Colorado and the 49th largest in the United States. It is also the county seat of El Paso County. It is also the headquarters of Focus on the Family, which is a Christian group.

Other websites


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