Metro Denver EDC Statement on U.S. Space Command Relocation
January 13, 2021
DENVER - The Metro Denver EDC is disheartened to learn that President Trump is ordering the relocation of U.S. Space Command from Colorado to Alabama in his final days in office. Departing its existing headquarters and established infrastructure in Colorado, which is served by the largest concentration of private aerospace workers in the U.S., this move is projected to take up to six years at enormous additional cost to the U.S. taxpayer.
We have been in touch with our congressional delegation and others in Washington D.C. to determine if the Air Force’s own recommendation on the home of Space Command will be made public – and we encourage its release. If the guidance of the Air Force’s detailed site selection process supports this move as in the best interests of our nation’s military space mission, we will, of course, support in every way possible our national defense, military personnel, and congratulate Alabama. If not, we believe that the incoming Biden Administration might have cause and duty to reevaluate this order.
“We have the utmost respect for the Department of the Air Force’s site evaluation process,” said J. J. Ament, CEO of the Metro Denver EDC. “We look forward to seeing how our military leadership scored Colorado and hope that their professional judgment was not overruled for political reasons by a President who is in his final hours in office. A decision that disrupts the operation of U.S. Space Command, and potentially impacts the strength of our long-term national space defense capabilities, is too important and complex to not be addressed in detail by the incoming administration with military leadership.”
Despite this disappointing news, the Metro Denver EDC – through the leadership and expertise of our Colorado Space Coalition – will continue to actively promote the thriving aerospace industry here in Colorado, which in 2020 greatly outpaced the national average in both employment growth rate and concentration of aerospace workers.
For perspective, the overall economic impact of Department of Defense-related activity in Colorado totals more than $36 billion annually – of which U.S. Space Command accounts for approximately 2.7%. So while the loss of this key military headquarters is most certainly disappointing – particularly to the military families who call Colorado Springs home and who are now facing relocation – it is important to recognize that Colorado remains a national leader in national security, civil, and commercial space activity.
Finally, our hearts go out to the members of the military space community who may now be forced to leave one of America’s most desirable places to live, work, and raise a family. Veterans United ranked three Colorado cities (and one in Alabama) among the best for veterans to live in 2021: Colorado Springs was ranked 2nd in the nation, while Birmingham ranked 39th. Huntsville was unranked.
About the Metro Denver EDC:
Often called a “center of influence,” the Metro Denver EDC is the nation’s first regional economic development organization. From Castle Rock to Fort Collins and Golden to Greeley, we represent the nine counties and nearly 70 communities that contribute to our resilient economy and incredible culture.
Thanks to the leadership and generosity of Colorado’s most influential companies, the Metro Denver EDC works to monitor and respond to the needs of the Colorado economy through corporate attraction and retention; workforce development; domestic and global marketing; investments in infrastructure; and public policy that fosters a pro-business climate. As part of our brain trust, our 250+ private sector partners get unmatched access to the decisions, directions and collaboration opportunities that are transforming the landscape of our economy, region and communities. It is this work that helps the EDC to drive competition and foster a culture of innovation and impact – ensuring that life and work in Metro Denver are thriving.
Learn more at metrodenver.org.
About the Colorado Space Coalition:
The Colorado Space Coalition is an initiative of the Metro Denver EDC, representing a diverse group of industry stakeholders working to make Colorado a center of excellence for space. Coalition members –including aerospace companies, academic organizations, and economic development groups – promote Colorado’s significant aerospace assets nationally, as well as advance legislation vital to industry growth and success. CSC members span the entire state, representing diverse backgrounds, but united goals to ensure a thriving environment for Colorado’s aerospace economy.
Learn more at spacecolorado.org.