Colorado Springs Independent and Business Journal set to return

Abigail Beckman, KRCC
The free alt-weekly is currently owned and operated by local publisher John Weiss. According to an article on the Indy’s website, while the Indy’s mission will stay the same, it will be operated by a Colorado Springs-based group called Citizen-Powered Media.

The Colorado Springs Independent is set to hit mailboxes and newspaper racks once again after shutting down late last year.

According to a press release, local entrepreneurs JW Roth and Kevin O'Neil have purchased the Independent and its sister publication, the Colorado Springs Business Journal, through their new joint venture, Pikes Peak Media Company.

Local businessman Roth has spearheaded the development of the Sunset Amphitheater in northeastern Colorado Springs through his company Notes Live. O'Neil is founder and CEO of the investment company The O'Neil Group, whose ventures include the Catalyst Campus near downtown Colorado Springs.

The Pikes Peak Media Company purchase of the Independent and Business Journal comes after ongoing funding issues that included a move to a non-profit model and an ill-fated attempt to combine brands into one publication. The purchase includes all associated brands, trademarks, copyrights and events associated with the papers. 

Former Independent publisher Fran Zankowski will resume the role on an interim basis and will oversee a search for a new editor, publisher and additional editorial staff. It's unclear if former senior reporter Pam Zubeck, who remained after others in the newsroom had been laid off, is slated to return.

The revival seeks to make the "critical components of the Colorado Springs media landscape remain operational and under local ownership," according to the statement.

The Independent is slated to return to newstands sometime this spring, followed by the Business Journal.

Representatives for the Pikes Peak Media Company have not responded to a request for comment.