Folks in the Carriages at Charleston Place are feuding over their mountain views.
Chuck and Ilse Young paid because they valued their spectacular view of Pikes Peak and the Front Range.
Jim and Evelyn Mills also paid and ever since have cherished their views of the mountains.
But when Classic landscaped the development, pine trees were planted in the yards around the townhomes, built as 40 duplexes.
Ilse Young said she soon realized the pines were going to grow too large and obscure her views. Here is a look at her home taken shortly before she moved in.
So Young said she contacted the developer and the homeowners association, or HOA, and was given permission to replace the pines with ornamental crabapple tress that can be more easily pruned. Permission was needed because the trees and yard are common areas to the HOA.
Mills recalls the request because he was the HOA’s first board president. In fact, he is on the board today.
Over the years, the Youngs and the Mills routinely hired an arborist to keep their trees pruned and shaped up.
But this year, when they asked for permission, the HOA board denied their request. The HOA board didn’t want to spend the money to prune every tree. And the board didn’t want to let the Mills and Youngs do it themselves.
Mills said Betty DeJong, vice president of the board, led the opposition. Mills said DeJong told him that her views were being blocked by one of those pine trees. Unlike the ornamentals, the pines can’t be as easily pruned without destroying their appearance.
Here is a look at the bushy trees from FlashEarth:
Mills recalls his conversation with DeJong like this: “She told me: ‘If I can’t prune mine, you shouldn’t be a able to prune yours.’ I was shocked.”
DeJong said she was simply making a point that it would set a bad precedent to let one or two homeowners prune their trees. Then all 80 homeowners would start pruning and things would be a mess.
Here’s a look at the trees today:
Mills and Young say they simply want to shape the trees and take off the new growth, just as they always have.
The Youngs have a special urgency to their request. They are trying to sell their home and being able to advertise it as having “mountain views” would enhance the value.
But the HOA board has ruled.