It was a full house Thursday night at City Hall's Council Chambers for a town hall on the $250-million City for Champions
Opponents outnumbered those in support of C4C, 31-14, based on those who spoke. Five said they were undecided, including legendary long-time city manager George Fellows
Fellow brought levity to the meeting after a very arduous walk from his seat to the podium. "I've got one speed," he said, "slow."
But his advice wasn't about the proposal so much as about the process. "Transparency is so important," he said. "The trust factor is the only way."
Fellows went on to say he wonders how the projects will compete, or if they will, with the funding of other city needs. Also, he asked, "If these projects don't produce the money they said they would, will tax money be used?"
Retired Lt. Gen. Mike Gould
, former Air Force Academy superintendent, spoke in favor of C4C, saying he's been disappointed "we're still having the discussion about whether to proceed."
Gould, who retired last summer, reportedly was in the inner circle of community leaders who compiled the project list, which includes a new academy visitors center, sports medicine center at the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs, downtown Olympic museum and downtown sports and events stadium.
, with the newly formed Business Chamber of Southern Colorado
, said she questioned the projects' ability to attract tourists.
"If I told my kids we're not going to Disneyland, we're going to UCCS..." she said, drawing laughter. She also asked why the projects can't be privately funded, and who would own the downtown stadium?
Council members didn't comment during the town hall.
For more information on C4C, go to the website
set up by supporters. It's substantially changed in the last week. Local elected officials and others who back City for Champions will hold a public meeting from 4 to 6 p.m. on March 18
at the Regional Development Center, 2880 International Circle.
If you missed the meeting, Councilman Andy Pico
will hold a public meeting next Thursday from 6-8 p.m.
at the Stetson Hills Police Department, 4110 Tutt Blvd. Topics include: City for Champions, Drake Power Plant/Task Force and Southern Delivery System water pipeline. El Paso County Commissioner Peggy Littleton
also will be on hand.
Here's a list of other councilor town halls coming up:
: March 12, 7-9 p.m., Cheyenne Mountain High School - Commons Area, 1200 Cresta Road.
: March 13, 6-8 p.m., Fire Station 18, 6830 Hadler View.
March 20, 6-8 p.m., Mesa Conservation & Environmental Center, Conference Room 1045, 2855 Mesa Road.
: March 31, 6-8 p.m. Fire Station 14, 1875 Dublin Blvd.