October, 2014           
Welcome to the Hancock Expressway/Academy Boulevard Planning and Environmental Linkages Study e-newsletter. Future e-newsletters will be sent periodically with project updates, upcoming meeting schedules and other useful information about the PEL Study.
In This Issue
Plans to Improve the South Academy Boulevard
Stakeholders Collaborate

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City of Colorado Springs

Carl Schueler, 719/385-5391
Project Consultant - FHU 
Todd Frisbie, 719/314-1800

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Next Steps

Per the PEL process, the City and the consultant team are working on developing an existing conditions report and the Purpose and Need Statement for the project. The team will also be developing alternatives for intersection improvements, access, pedestrian connectivity and overhead utility under-grounding. Information and findings from these efforts will be presented at the next stakeholder meeting, which is anticipated in January 2015. 

Project Map and Timeline
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Project Partners
  • Federal Highway Administration
  • Colorado Department of Transportation
  • City of Colorado Springs
  • The Community
City of Colorado Springs

Plans to improve the South Academy Boulevard transportation system are underway.


The City of Colorado Springs, in collaboration with the community and project partners, has kicked off the next step in the City's goal to revitalize the South Academy Boulevard Corridor. A 12- to 15-month Planning and Environmental Linkages (PEL) transportation study is underway to improve the safety of the traveling public and pedestrians, and provide better access for the local community and businesses in the Hancock Expressway and Academy Boulevard intersection area. The PEL is also intended to recommend transportation improvements to support economic revitalization for this portion of the South Academy Corridor and the surrounding areas.


The study's primary focus is along the Academy Boulevard and Hancock Expressway corridors including the four retail or formerly retail corners, as well as adjacent vacant and developable properties.  This area is one of the key redevelopment nodes identified in the 2011 Great Streets Plan, which was further analyzed for specific revitalization activities in the South Academy Economic Opportunity Zone Action PlanThe study's expected outcome includes recommendations for transportation system improvements that meet multi-modal transportation needs of the Academy and Hancock intersection, transit service, and pedestrians; and contribute to the revitalization vision.


The PEL document will be prepared in close coordination with the Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT), the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), and the community. Engaged and active stakeholder participation is integral to the PEL process. 


The vision for revitalization of the area is to promote, support and adaptively redevelop the Academy Boulevard corridor as a Great Street with access to alternative modes of transportation, public/private investment in business and residential development, and enhanced connectivity with the street, between land uses, and with neighborhoods. To spark a revitalization of the Academy Boulevard corridor by reconnecting to surrounding neighborhoods physically, socially, and economically -- making the area relevant and desirable. South Academy Economic Opportunity Zone Action Plan.

Stakeholders Collaborate on Redesign of Intersection 

On Sept. 24 about 50 stakeholders participated in the Agency/Stakeholder Charter Meeting for the Hancock Expressway/Academy Boulevard Planning and Environmental Linkages (PEL) Study and Design project. Attendees included property and business owners, staff from the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), the Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT), the City of Colorado Springs, Colorado Springs Utilities and the Colorado Springs Police Department.


The City's project manager and the consultant team briefed participants about: 

  • The study
  • Study area background, history and limits
  • The PEL process
  • PEL goals and objectives
  • PEL schedule
  • Success factors
  • Issues and concerns identified by property and business owners whose interests are close the intersection

More information and documents from this meeting can be found in the Stakeholder's Meeting Summary


Key participants at the meeting signed the charter agreement to ensure a collaborative, respectful stateholder process. Read more in PEL Team Charter. 

Click to view Focus of the Vision.