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The State of the City 2013

From horse-drawn carriages to 21st century jet liners, Denver has grown from an isolated mining town to an up-and-coming metropolis. We are a smart, cutting-edge city linked by walking trails, bike paths, highways, light rail and nonstop flights that create bridges — connections — that open up a world of opportunities for our children, neighbors and businesses.

-Mayor Michael B. Hancock, 2013 State of the City Address

Throughout the second year in office, Mayor Michael B. Hancock and his administration maintained their focus on supporting Denver’s kids, strengthening the city’s economy, and improving safety, customer service and sustainability. While intent on delivering a world-class city where everyone matters, the Hancock administration concentrated this past year on increasing Denver’s connectivity: better connecting neighbors to one another and to city services, and building bridges between Denver and the rest of the world.

State of the City Address | Year Two Report | Letter to the Community | Letter to City Employees


Priorities and Accomplishments

Connecting Denver residents with the best customer service possible. Denver voters overwhelmingly passed Measure 2A, a smart and fiscally responsible solution that is helping to eliminate the city’s budget deficit, strengthen the city’s economy and restore essential services. Thanks to the Mayor’s Peak Performance initiative, city employees also have embraced an innovative, efficient and effective culture, identifying $7 million in savings while improving processes over the past year.

Connecting businesses to global economic opportunities.
From direct access to capital to five new non-stop connections and three new airlines for tourism and commerce, Denver is strategically connecting every business, big and small, with the means to compete in the global marketplace.

Connecting Denver’s children with healthy, safe and engaging activities.
Thanks to Denver voters’ passage of Measure 2A, the city is providing children with unprecedented access to out-of-school and summer activities. More than 90,000 Denver students now have free, year-round access to the city’s recreation centers, pools and libraries with the MY Denver Card.

Connecting safety officers with the community.
Denver’s police department is better connecting with the people it serves and preventing crime by reforming, retraining and recalibrating the department.  Today, violent crime is down 13 percent in Denver.

Reconnecting neighborhoods and neighbors.
With the opening of the West Rail Line, Denver now hosts 30 commuter rail stations that are being leveraged to elevate and reconnect overlooked neighborhoods such as Sun Valley, Elyria-Swansea and Globeville. The city has connected all neighborhoods with a better quality of life by designating more parkland, increasing affordable housing options and growing jobs. To celebrate the Mile High City’s rich heritage and bright future, Mayor Hancock has also named August 3-11 as “Denver Days,” a new citywide tradition to encourage neighbors to get to know each other.

New Programs and Initiatives

The city will strengthen the way it supports international businesses, foreign visitors and immigrant residents in Denver by creating the International Welcome Center, which will focus on establishing Denver as a global destination for commerce and culture.

The city will increase affordable housing options for Denver’s workforce and re-calibrate training to fill middle-skill employment gaps in high-growth sectors. This strategy will build on the region’s growing momentum in science, technology, engineering and mathematics.

Mayor Hancock has proposed a 24-hour rest and resource station, as well as a courtyard and safe space for daytime use, to serve the homeless in Denver.

The city will support early stage companies and encourage innovation in Denver’s ideas economy by opening an entrepreneurism and technology center in downtown that will offer strategic advisers and thoughtful connections to resources.

From cradle to career, the Mayor is committed to connecting Denver’s children to a better future. This fall, the city will launch a program to ensure the youngest learners get a smart start that will prepare them for educational success, beginning with kindergarten.

To help prevent crime and keep the residents of this great city safe, in addition to getting more officers out on patrol, the city will hire more than 100 new officers for the first time in five years.


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Featured Initiatives

Denver's budget is a financial blueprint that maps the many services the City provides and how those services are funded. Services include police and fire protection, snow removal, street maintenance, recreation programs and parks and libraries. See how you can help fix the budget gap by going here...

After three years of measures to balance the budget, agencies are feeling the effects of putting off needed investments in capital and human resources. We need a new approach to these ongoing challenges. Learn more about Peak Performance

The Denver Education Compact is Mayor Hancock's initiative to create a new and binding agreement requiring the City, Denver Public Schools, higher education and community stakeholders to make specific commitments to improve education throughout Denver. Learn more...

Mayor Hancock has accepted President Obama’s Better Buildings Challenge, committing the City and County of Denver to reduce energy use 20 percent by 2020 across its building portfolio, which totals more than seven million square feet. Learn more about the Better Buildings Denver program...