CDOT plans upgrades on CO-94 as region pushes for US Space Command
COLORADO SPRINGS – They sat across the aisle from each other in Congress for at least a decade. Now Republican Congressman Doug Lamborn and Democratic Governor Jared Polis are working together to encourage the Department of Defense to build the US Space Command in El Paso County.
In a tweet showing a photo of himself and Governor Polis from a meeting last week, Rep. Lamborn said the Department of Defense "can be assured Colorado Springs is ready for Space Command to return!"
He also shared a letter he received from the Governor promising to improve a critical piece of infrastructure should the military build it's new headquarters here; State Highway 94.
"I have requested that the extraordinary state and national benefits of maintaining proper access to this nationally significant military installation be properly considered during the Colorado Department of Transportation's (CDOT's) planning process," Polis wrote.
Reggie Ash, Defense Economic Development Chief for the Colorado Springs Chamber and EDC said bringing US Space Command to the Pikes Peak Region would be a tremendous addition.
"In addition to the jobs that it brings to the community, it brings stature as well. Because US Space Command is a Unified Command, a Joint Command, a Combatant Command, and that is the highest level of command in the military in the Department of Defense."
Ash noted that our educated workforce and military-friendly community certainly give Colorado Springs an edge in attracting the Command, but they're not taking anything for granted.
Earlier this month, CDOT Executive Director Shoshana Lew visited each of the military installations in the greater Colorado Springs area and met with
"We've really been excited at the level of attention that we've gotten from the transportation director, Mrs. Lew, as well as recently from Governor Polis," Ash said.
Michelle Peulen, spokesperson for CDOT in Region 2, explained that engineers will study the intersections with Marksheffel Road and Enoch Road. There are also plans to add lighting and passing lanes leading up to those busy entry points. The governor's letter estimates to cost of the upgrades to be between $7-10 million.
"I would say in the next year, year and a half you'll be seeing some activity in those areas," Peulen said.
She said ideally CDOT would eventually like to expand the CO Hwy 94 from two lanes to four, but that's a bigger project that'll take more time and money.