Convention center not a good idea

Filed under: Opinion |

If you attended the Nov. 22 City Council meeting, you heard first hand why the proposed downtown convention center is not a good idea. And it came straight from the horse’s mouth.

Under questioning by Council members, the Strategic Advisory Group partner presenting his firm’s findings muted the optimistic tone of the study by admitting that downtown Colorado Springs is not attractive enough (or close enough to the probable site) to make a convention center and headquarters hotel successful. Worse, he could not provide a coherent definition of success.

Other cities have proceeded with similar projects upon far more enthusiastic projections, only to be disappointed in the outcomes. For the Springs to press on with a center and hotel using the SAG study as justification-and the taxpayers’ wallets as collateral- would be irresponsible.

After SAG’s report, if any wind continues to fill the sails of such a project, it will come from “self-serving and self-interested parties,” trying to convince the public to finance a hoped-for windfall for downtown businesses and real estate developers.

Steve Haggart

Colorado Springs