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Homes threatened by football field sized landslide in Louisville neighborhood

Posted at 9:28 PM, Aug 21, 2018
and last updated 2018-08-22 00:45:12-04

LOUISVILLE, Colo. — The town of Louisville has so much to offer like a historic Main Street, quaint restaurants and shops not far from the homes nestled in their peaceful neighborhoods. Another big draw is the lush open land. But for some residents, that land has become a threat to their homes in one subdivision where erosion has created a landslide.

Kevin Gebert built his home right next to the Coyote Run open space in 1990.

“I love the house. I love living here. It's a great neighborhood, great town. All good,” said Gebert.

But as of late, he can’t miss the grooves in the ground that are eroding and caving in, forming a massive landslide near his home on West Sagebrush Court.

“It’s moving so slowly that you can’t really tell,” said Gebert.

The people in the Saddle Ridge neighborhood noticed the cracks back in 2013 during the floods. They told Denver7 the land collapsed after that. 

Fast forward to present day, and those cracks have grown to the size of a football field, moving closer to homes and the city. After much urging from residents, the city has decided to do something about it.

“The worry may be that it will continue all the way up the hill and impact a backyard or cause a house to settle. What that timeframe is I don’t think anyone knows. So better to be proactive than reactive,” said Director of Public Works and Utilities for the City of Louisville, Kurt Kowar.

Another potential factor adding to the erosion of the open space, decades ago the city approved it’s excavation so that the soil could be used to help build and prop up a nearby subdivision.

“That may have been part of what happened with it. I’m sure it was a contributing factor, but we didn’t really think about it at the time,” said Gebert.

Tuesday night, the city council decided to move forward with Kowar’s suggestion to hire a firm to design a mitigation plan to fix the issue.

Three possible solutions will be considered: Removing the water from the soil, relocating the dirt altogether or building an underground steel shaft to keep the soil in place. It could cost the city $500,000.

“Cheaper than the price of our houses, that’s how I look at it,” said Gebert. “They know it’s their responsibility to fix that. They’ve accepted it and are moving forward.”