The NBA has a plan to help Colorado’s grasslands — including Denver’s | Rocky Mountain News
COLORADO — Colorado has some of the highest concentrations of native grassland on Earth.
But if a proposal to develop a new $1.6 billion mixed-use development on the Rocky Mountain is approved by voters, it could set a new standard in grassland development.
The Denver Metro Parks and Recreation Department and its partners, including developer Denver Realty Partners, are proposing a 2.7-acre site near Rocky Mountain National Park, located in northern Colorado about 70 miles (110 kilometers) north of Denver.
The proposal is among many in the Denver area that would create mixed-used development with at least 15,000 homes and 10,000 jobs.
Denver Realtors says it’s looking for a site with land that’s 2.5 acres (0.6 hectares) or smaller.
The land would include a parking lot, retail and office space, a public green space, green space for recreational purposes, and green space and a pedestrian path for bicyclists.
The developers are also seeking a 2-acre, 5-story, mixed-income residential development that includes a restaurant, restaurant and office, said Michael Schafer, a Denver Reassurings representative who is part of the project’s advisory board.
The proposed development would include 1,500 to 2,000 apartments and condos, with a mix of commercial and residential units, Schafer said.
It would include about 2,200 jobs, including 1,200 construction jobs, 1,300 maintenance jobs and 600 part-time jobs, he said.
The development would also provide a “great deal of community amenity and recreation opportunities,” Schafer added.
The Rocky Mountain Forests Alliance, a conservation group, has long pushed for more native grasslands in the area.
The group’s president, Robert Fuchs, said in a statement that the new development would bring people and jobs to the area, and that the proposed development will create “more than 30 permanent jobs.”
“It will be a wonderful opportunity for Colorado to bring back some of our great, beautiful and diverse grasslands for generations to come,” Fuchs said.
“The Rocky Mountain Landscape Commission has been pushing for the creation of new mixed-using developments in the Rocky Mountains since the 1970s.
The commission has never been more needed, and we’re proud to work with this company to develop this great proposal.”
The development could be the first of its kind in the state, said Dave Buechner, executive director of the Rocky Mountaineering Association, a nonprofit conservation group.
“This is one of the most beautiful, biologically diverse areas in the country,” he said, adding that the development will help the region attract more visitors.
The association has worked for decades to promote more natural areas for recreation and the outdoors.
Its members include Colorado Avalanche Hockey Association players and the U.S. Ski & Snowboard Association, Buecner said.
For more than two decades, Buesner has been working with Rocky Mountain Realtor David Schafer to bring a new development to the city.
Schafer is the managing partner of Denver Reals, a developer of mixed-uses and mixed-purpose buildings.
He’s working with Colorado Avalanche Sports and Outdoors to get approval for the project.
Denver Avalanche Hockey, which plays at Denver’s Pepsi Center, has been a long-time supporter of Rocky Mountain reclamation projects, including the Rocky Mesa Trail.
Schauer and his partners are seeking approvals from the Rocky Summit Regional Planning Commission and Denver’s Planning and Zoning Commission, as well as city and county officials.
The developer will need to file with the city and local planning agencies for a variance, which will allow it to expand or re-design the property to include retail and offices.
The project would be in the heart of Rocky Mesa, a park that stretches for more than a mile (1.7 kilometers) from Rocky Mountain Park.
Denver Public Schools is working with the Rocky MESA Alliance, Rocky Mountain Trail Alliance and the Denver Rocky Mountain Parks Foundation to make sure the project meets school safety and security requirements.
Rocky Mesa Park is the largest in the U