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The recession hit Colorado Springs very hard. The city budget is in shambles. There have been massive layoffs in all departments, the police helicopters were sold, most parks are not being maintained, most rec centers have closed, the tourism and economic development budgets are gone.

The private sector has stepped up to some extent. The USOC is paying to keep 3 swimming pools open, for example. Libertarian ideology is being put to the test right now, basically. The city manager has resigned, and there is talk that the police chief won't be far behind, because the budget isn't getting better anytime soon, and more staff reductions and pay cuts are likely.

Meanwhile, there is growing momentum behind the idea of a strong mayor form of government, as voters look for someone to hold accountable for all of the city's problems.

In spite of all of this, downtown has actually held up rather well. The creation of the downtown development authority has really kept the momentum up. The economy did kill Cooper Tower, and Pikes Peak Place, Southwest Downtown, and Citygate remain stalled... but the situation downtown could be a whole lot worse. DDA grants have allowed businesses to update and modernize their store fronts, add new signage, or even pay the rent.

Edited by Pikes Peak

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