Pikes Peak Visitor Center now fully open to the public
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (KKTV) - The top spot at America’s Mountain is back open.
A ribbon cutting ceremony topped off the grand opening of the new $65 million Pikes Peak Summit Visitor Center on Wednesday.
The mayor calls it a “worthy crown” for America’s Mountain and says it was not easy feat. It took three years and hundreds of workers. Many times crews were working through hail, snow, and even lightning. Although Wednesday morning at 14,000 feet up was a little cloudy, the grand opening was far from that.
If you take a look around the new building, there are gorgeous windows with a panoramic view, a new cafe with the famous donuts, outdoor overlooks and more.
“It is a privilege to be here and I am thankful for everybody that made it happen,” visitor Brian Anderson said.
Manager of Pikes Peak, America’s Mountain, Jack Glavan envisioned project almost two decades ago, so it seems fitting that he is retiring about a month after it opens.
“It’s kind of an amazing accomplishment -- or feat. It’s not my feat -- it’s the whole group’s feat,” he said. “But I was hired in ’95 and we were theoretically going to build a summit house ... now and 25, 26 years later this is what you see.”
Already about 5,000 visitors a day are coming through the doors at the new visitor center, including Governor Jared Polis and Colorado Springs Mayor John Suthers. They arrived on the historic Cog Railway that just reopened after being closed for repairs.
“Just one month short of 150 years later dedicating a new summit house on Pikes Peak and in the process reaffirming General Palmer’s vision that the identity of Colorado Springs and Pikes Peak are inseparable,” Mayor Suthers said.
“Pikes Peak is really a part of who we are here in Colorado,” Governor Jared Polis said. “It’s about our spirit. This is a fittingly iconic visitors center, for an iconic site.”
Builders say construction will still be going on there until September.
The visitors center is encouraging people to check the Pikes Peak shuttle schedule before coming up because many will have to take it to get up to the peak.
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