What is the purpose of the City for Champions project?
City for Champions is an ambitious project that will spur economic growth and strengthen our local economy. It is supported by the Regional Tourism Act (see below), which is a state-run funding mechanism for attracting, constructing and operating large-scale tourism projects. It consists of four individual projects that are in five locations. There are many benefits of City for Champions. C4C will:
- Create more than 5,100 new jobs
- Attract and retain young professionals and a quality workforce
- Promote the community through tourism, attracting visitors who spend money without living here
- Be a catalyst for other public/private partnerships and economic growth
- Revitalize Downtown Colorado Springs with new retail opportunities, restaurants, companies and residential development
- Keep state sales tax revenues here, rather than sending them to Denver
- Invite national and international sports-performance and sports-medicine entities to compete in our region
- Brand Colorado Springs as Olympic City USA
- Improve our ability to meet infrastructure needs such as stormwater, roads and bridges
- Improve our ability to provide basic services such as street lights, watering, parks maintenance, police and fire services through increased sales tax revenue
- Help diversify our tax base, providing long-term economic stability
What are the C4C projects?
How are these projects funded?
The C4C projects are funded by state and local tax increment financing, corporate sponsors, private donors, naming rights and public/private partnerships
What is the Regional Tourism Act?
Purpose of the legislation
The Regional Tourism Act promotes diversification of the state’s economic base by providing a financing mechanism for attracting, constructing and operating large-scale regional tourism projects, which include tourism or entertainment facilities that will attract significant investment and revenue from outside the state. Tourism or entertainment facilities include but are not limited to museums, stadiums, arenas, major sports facilities, performing arts theaters, theme or amusement parks, conference centers or resort hotels or other similar venues that draw a significant number of regional, national or international patrons.
The Regional Tourism Act establishes a program that gives local governments the opportunity to apply to the EDC for approval of large-scale regional tourism projects with tourism or entertainment facilities in regional tourism zones that:
- are of an extraordinary and unique nature,
- are anticipated to result in a substantial increase in out-of-state tourism, and
- generate a significant portion of their sales tax revenue from transactions with nonresidents of the regional tourism zone.
- the local government must provide reliable economic data demonstrating that in the absence of state sales tax increment revenue, the project is not reasonably anticipated to be developed within the foreseeable future.
The EDC can approve two projects per year for three years through the RTA and shall not approve any project that would create a state sales tax revenue dedication of more than $50 million to all projects in any given year.
What kind of jobs will be created?
The C4C projects will provide economic job diversification rather than over-reliance on Department of Defense-related jobs. They will help solve a high unemployment rate by creating more than 5,100 new and permanent jobs in industries such as:
- Sports medicine
- Sports business
- Museum management
- Facilities management
- Construction, architecture, engineering
- Health care for elite athletes, wounded warriors, aging Baby Boomers
- Support services and small business
About 2,200 of the jobs will be construction jobs in the region.
About 2,900 will be permanent, full-time moderate-to high-paying jobs, including management/executive positions in the region.
What will be the economic impact of the C4C projects?
- Boost the region’s $2.4 billion annual tourism industry
- Attract about 1.2 million visitors each year
- Add more than 500,000 new out-of-state visitors annually
- Increase retail sales by $140 million each year
- Increase gross metropolitan product by $217 million annually
- Add $4.4 million in new sales tax revenue for the city annually
- Add $2 million in new sales tax revenue for the county annually
- Leverage a $120.5 million state tourism improvement rebate
- Allow 24 local TEAM USA National Governing Bodies to host e-Olympic and World Championship events
- Attract numerous regional sports entities to host events in Colorado Springs
- Not require new taxes