Banning Lewis Ranch agreement could mean $49 million for city

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Colorado Springs City council will have the opportunity to approve modifications to the Banning Lewis Ranch annexation agreement in the future, which could mean significant economic and financial impacts to El Paso County.

On Nov. 27, TischlerBise, a national fiscal, economic and planning consultant, presented an economic and fiscal impact analysis to the Colorado Springs City Council. It stated that developments in Banning Lewis Ranch could result in $49 million in net revenue for Colorado Springs, and $41 billion would be added to the city’s economy over the next 30 years.

This modification would be a change to the 1988 agreement when Banning Lewis Ranch was annexed into Colorado Springs.

“Putting an appropriate annexation agreement in place for Banning Lewis that pays for the cost of development and stimulates economic growth has been a priority over the past year,” Bob Cope, economic development officer for Colorado Springs, said in the news release.

According to the release, little development has occurred in Banning Lewis since the agreement in 1988, which has resulted in lost economic opportunity, municipal tax revenue and utility revenue.

Projected growth from developments in Banning Lewis Ranch includes 24,000 new homes and 62,000 new residents by about 2050.

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There is also a projection that 35,000 new jobs will be added.

“We know that development is currently leap-frogging the area and creating a donut effect, with business and residential development occurring in unincorporated El Paso County, rather than Banning Lewis Ranch,” Cope said in the release.

“The analysis indicates that future development in Banning Lewis Ranch will more than pay for itself over the short, intermediate and long term and will create significant positive economic growth for the city.”