Folks in the Ralwes Open Space Neighborhood want the Colorado Springs City Council to decide if the policy to encourage ”infill” development has any limits.
At Tuesday’s council meeting, they will ask the council to reject plans for the Horizon View subdivision. They argue the projec tis incompatible with the neighborhood, which sits along Mesa Road between Fillmore and Uintah streets.
Kristine Hembre, left, an allergy doctor, bought the five-acre property in 2006 and made plans, through her Elle Development Co., to tear down the existing house and replace it with five new houses on a modern cul de sac with a paved street, curbs and gutters, sidewalks and sewers.
Such amenities are unusual along that stretch of Mesa, where residents take pride in the rural feel of things. They don’t have curbs, gutters and sidewalks or paved driveways or even city sewer service. Here’s a look at the area from www.FlashEarth.com:
Rawles residents boast that they have preserved their area so well that Springs founder Gen William Jackson Palmer might still recognize it, a century after his death. According to legend, Palmer rode Mesa to get from his Glen Eyrie castle to Colorado Springs.
Below is a page submitted by one of the neighbors:
So they are fighting the project on the basis that large homes on 20,000-square-foot lots would be incompatible with the surrounding rural feel of the neighborhood.
Here’s a look at preliminary blueprints filed with the city:
The Colorado Springs Planning Commission gave the plan unanimous approval because it meets zoning and other requirements. And planners reason that it is exactly the kind of project the City Council wanted to encourage when it established a policy to encourage “infill” development.
The idea is for developers to look for vacant land within established neighborhoods where houses or apartments can be built, rather than automatically building new subdivisions farther and farther out on the eastern edge of the city.
But Rawles neighborhood leaders said the council should care about preserving the character of older neighborhoods.
You can read the entire file and see more blueprints here.
Here’s a closer look from FlashEarth at the property:
The Rawles Open Space is a 7.6-acre tract named for the former owners of the property. It was deeded to the Palmer Land Trust to preserve it. Another 19-acre tract nearby also is owned by the Trust, which works to secure conservation easements to preserve undeveloped land. Read about the Palmer Land Trust.