After sitting through several hours of meetings yesterday, when I returned home I flipped on the laptop to learn some of the results of yesterday’s elections.
What I also found was that the Park Hill Golf Course saga was continuing with a new twist. Sometimes it’s better to be an observer, rather than a player. The image above is ancient, but it looks so green and serene.
According to a release sent out by the city, “The City and County of Denver finalized a Settlement Agreement with Westside Investment Partners that maintains existing land use restrictions at the privately-owned Park Hill Golf Course and guarantees the community and City Council will have a defining role in any proposed changes.”
As expected, coverage was swift, since a large amount of money was being given by the city to Westside Investment Partners. The developers had purchased the golf course this past summer from the trust managed by the non-profit Clayton Early Learning, which owned the golf course. There have been several entities involved in this situation, including a group of citizens who want the city to buy that land and make it a park. Others want affordable housing. As for Westside: It spent more than $24 million for the land.
From Westword, “According to the settlement, the city will now pay Westside $6 million to compensate for damages to the property from the stormwater detention project; the money will come out of the Platte to Park Hill land condemnation fund.”
From Denverite, “The settlement ends all of pending litigation over the property but does not add any sort of clarity to the future of the 155 acres of land, which has embroiled the city, open space advocates and the various owners and operators of the golf course for years.”
From The Denver Post: “For nearly three years, a community debate has pit open-space advocates against development supporters who want to see housing or other uses allowed on some of the 155 acres in northeast Denver. Now the agreement reached with Westside Investment Partners gives the developer at least three more years to plot out its plans.”
And then there is the Greater Park Hill News, which has really good background on this ongoing issue and the change in the statute that has been seen as a way to bolster keeping the land open space.
Below are links to these publications, as well as links to the city’s statement on the settlement and to the information Westside has posted on its website. And a link to a background story in Westword with information about the change in the statute addressing conservation easements.
The irony? The meeting I attended yesterday evening involved Westside, which had invited the community to ask questions and get a quick update on the developer’s plans for the Loretto Heights campus. Now, that was really serene.