Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Christian School Construction Opposed, Favoring Animals

Area residents successfully oppose sale of 100 acres of land to Colorado Christian University.

-- From "Opposition to Christian campus in Highlands Ranch 'overwhelming'" by Mike McPhee, The Denver Post 1/13/10

The Colorado Christian University, which sits on a 30-acre campus in Lakewood, attempted to buy a prime spot in the hills south of Highlands Ranch where it wanted to build a residential campus for up to 2,700 students, along with staff and faculty. The site is southwest of the Skyridge Medical Center near Lincoln Avenue and Interstate 25

The plan was presented publicly for the first time on the Tuesday before Thanksgiving by the Highlands Ranch Community Association and Shea Properties, which developed parts of the subdivision. Fierce opposition grew quickly, to the point that nearly 500 opponents jammed a public hearing on Jan. 6.

On Monday, the school withdrew its offer to purchase the land and said it would look elsewhere.

The land is considered open space but is zoned for limited use for schools, recreation such as golf courses or cultural events, said Gordon Von Stroh, a DU business school professor and member of the HRCA's development review committee.

Residents said the property is a prime wildlife viewing area and a well used wildlife corridor.

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From "
Colorado Christian withdraws bid" by Chris Michlewicz, Highlands Ranch Herald 1/18/10

Colorado Christian University had requested to purchase 100 acres of open space on Monarch Boulevard near Rocky Heights Middle School, but withdrew its bid in the face of widespread community opposition.

The university’s president, Bill Armstrong, issued a statement on the decision, saying “the management and board of HRCA listened courteously to our idea, but it quickly became obvious that there is little chance the board will decide to sell. So, we are now taking our proposal off the table and moving on.”

CCU proposed the expanded Highlands Ranch campus as a center of academic excellence, as well as musical, cultural, and athletic events and facilities to benefit the local community.

Charles Newton, a Highlands Ranch resident, supported the university and said it could bring an increase in sales tax revenue because students and faculty would visit local businesses. He said the university would have provided “a big boost to the cultural and fiscal aspects of Highlands Ranch.”

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