June 6: Mayor Yemi hits first year mark with track record of positive accomplishments

(COLORADO SPRINGS) — One year ago today, Yemi Mobolade was sworn in as the 42nd Mayor of Colorado Springs. Since his inauguration, Mobolade’s time in office has been characterized by tangible advancements in several crucial civic areas including housing, economic vitality, community activation, infrastructure, and public safety.

Mayor Mobolade or “Mayor Yemi” as he prefers to be called, has been focused on collaboration and proactivity from day one, most notably the creation of Solutions Teams brought together to tackle the community’s most challenging problems.

Referencing the June 6 milestone, the Mayor said, “I concluded my inaugural address, by stating, ‘It’s time to get to work’. I hit the ground running and, today, I continue to serve with the same drive, passion, and belief in the great things we can accomplish by working together.”

A graphic representing collaborative positive achievements during Mayor Yemi’s first year in office. Courtesy: @MayorofCOS on X.
A graphic representing collaborative positive achievements during Mayor Yemi’s first year in office. Courtesy: @MayorofCOS on X.

During his first 100 days in office, Mayor Yemi conducted a Listening Tour where over 1,000 Colorado Springs neighbors shared 2,300 pieces of feedback that were used to create the City’s 2024 Strategic Doing Framework.

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“It’s important to me to bring the Mayor’s Office to the people, and I’m proud of how engaged we’ve been with the community and how welcoming the community has been to this approach,” said the Mayor.

Below is a summary, provided by the Mayor’s office, of the positive accomplishments brought about by the collaborative efforts of the community and city government over the last year.

Public Safety

  • The Police Department is nearing its authorized strength of 819 sworn officers thanks to concurrent training academies. When Mayor Yemi started, the department was facing a shortage of 70-plus officers. Now, the department is expecting to reach full bench strength by the end of this year.

  • Implemented 5 new school zones at middle and high schools across Colorado Springs to improve student safety. These are expected to be operational at the start of the 2024-2025 school year with an additional 5 locations to be implemented before the end of 2024.

  • Launched a new speed radar program through the Police Department to deter speeding in school and construction zones, residential areas, and roads that border parks.

  • Broke ground on Fire Station 24, which will serve the growing northeast area of Colorado Springs, near Interquest Parkway and New Life Drive.

Infrastructure

  • Repaved 179 lane miles and replaced 47.5 miles of sidewalk with 2C funding. With operations and maintenance funding, filled 104,181 potholes.

  • Achieved 20-year passenger highs at the Colorado Springs Airport and a record number of riders on Mountain Metropolitan Transit.

  • Opened the first dog park in Downtown Colorado Springs in the historic Antlers Park, located behind the Antlers Hotel.

  • Launched a new development tracker review webpage that makes it easier than ever for residents to learn about proposed development projects.

  • Started to draft AnnexCOS, the city’s new annexation master plan.

  • Revised the land use development review process to make it clearer to residents that City team members are not advocates for land use items.

Housing Solutions

  • Created the Housing & Community Vitality department.

  • Commissioned a housing needs assessment that will collect data around what type of housing is needed in Colorado Springs to meet the 16,000-27,000 home deficit identified in a report by the Common Sense Institute. When completed, the needs assessment will help guide housing solutions.

  • Construction has begun on 345 affordable housing units.

Economic Vitality

  • Signed six economic development agreements that will add 1,872 new and high-paying jobs and generate a projected investment of $450 million.

  • Helped secure U.S. Space Command in Colorado Springs.

  • Bolstered the City’s commitment to supporting workforce development and small businesses by hiring a Workforce Development Administrator and Small Business Development Administrator.

  • Developing a robust Business Navigator program that will launch this year to help entrepreneurs and small businesses navigate government processes.

Community Activation

  • Launched the 1,000 Neighborhood Gatherings initiative on May 18 to support collective health and well-being and offer an upstream solution to mental health.

  • Created the Mayor’s Office of Community Affairs to bring the mayor’s office to the people.

  • Launched the AskCOS AI chatbot to improve the search function of the City’s website.

“Many of our early efforts have been to intentionally lay the groundwork so that significant progress can continue to be made,” Mayor Yemi said. “And I still believe, greater things are yet to come and greater things are still to be done in this city.”

“It’s hard to believe that a year has flown by since I became the 42nd Mayor of Colorado Springs,” the Mayor posted today on X. “Thank you for the opportunity to serve you. I am because WE are.”

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