COLORADO SPRINGS — Plans are finally moving forward to complete the Powers Boulevard extension.
There's enough funding now to complete the first phase of the project and the goal is to start construction this fall.
Bob Cope, economic development officer for the City of Colorado Springs, shared that funding has always been an issue as CDOT doesn't have the money to complete the project. However, Colorado Springs City Council recently approved a shift for more of the sales tax general funds to go into an Urban Renewal Account to help pay for the extension faster.
Cope said, "The extension of Powers has been contemplated for decades really."
Powers is a critical piece of transportation for people in Colorado Springs and major changes need to be made to it to keep cars and revenue flowing.
"It reaches Highway 83 now. At that point then travelers either have to go north and get to Northgate Road or south and get to Interquest Parkway."
It's leaving some properties in the Northgate area undeveloped.
"Until that Powers extension is built it can't be developed because it doesn't have access. It doesn't have visibility."
But with a recent amendment by the city council to how sales tax revenue is shared things are about to change.
"Now that that's been approved then that gave the metropolitan district the bonding capacity needed to complete Phase One."
Phase One is Interstate 25 to Voyager. Phase Two is Voyager to Highway 83.
The project is something people like Mitchell Roth have been waiting for. He's the co-founder of Bourbon Brothers Entertainment.
Roth said, "For us, we've spent a lot of time standing in our own parking lot looking down at where the intersection was supposed to take place and there was no dirt moving."
Now that plans are moving forward he said, "It's going to put a spotlight on the north end of Colorado Springs...as many of those cars as we can attract we'll take them."
Cope said the next step is to put the project up for bid. Some agreements need to be made between the metro district, city and CDOT to be able to start construction.
The goal is to have Phase One completed in about two years.