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Fight over future of Park Hill Golf Course land continues

Posted at 4:53 PM, Oct 22, 2019
and last updated 2019-10-22 19:48:24-04

DENVER -- A 155-acre plot of undeveloped land is a rare sight in Denver and there's an ongoing fight to preserve it. Denver's former Mayor, Wellington Webb, joined a group that is hoping to save the Park Hill Golf Course site from future development.

The group, Save Open Space Denver, is asking the city to take another look at a conservation easement for the property. They say the easement is a way to protect that space and preserve it from future development.

Woody Garnsey, a longtime resident, spoke before a group of supporters and said a recent change to a state law could protect the land. The group wrote a letter to the mayor and city council, which included a legal opinion from a conservation attorney who believes only a court can terminate the easement.

MORE: What's next in the legal fight for the Park Hill Golf Course?

“I believe people in Denver believe there is too much development, too much development and now they want to develop 155 pristine acres of open space land, golf course land," said former Denver Mayor Wellington Webb.

The land was purchased by a company called Westside Investment Partners for $24 million this summer. A representative from the company said he believes there needs to be a broader dialogue about the future of the property

A spokesperson for the Denver City Attorney's Office said they are evaluating the claims. He released the following statement:

“We are very aware of the laws and legal issues associated with the Conservation Easement, including the state statute, and we are prepared to evaluate any specific proposal in light of applicable law. As we have said throughout the process, any changes to the Conservation Easement would first require City approval and compliance with required procedural steps. For more than 20 years, the plain language of the Conservation Easement has required the land to be used as a golf course.”