For years, residents of Mesa Springs neighborhood fought to prevent Colorado Springs from extending Centennial Boulevard south from Fillmore Street to connect with Interstate 25 at Fontanero Street.
They feared their 50-year-old neighborhood of modest homes would be wrecked by Centennial. They saw it creating a Bermuda Traffic Triangle between Centennial, Fillmore and I-25.
Here is a look at the area from FlashEarth:
But now a developer has contacted the city about building upwards of 500 homes — either single-family, townhomes, condos or apartments — on 47 acres on the west edge of the neighborhood.
The property owner is MVS Development of Albuquerque, N.M. They hired NES Inc., a land planning and landscsape architecture company in the Springs, to get the land rezoned.
Ron Bevans, an NES project manager, said the owners want the city to approve a broad rezoning plan. Part of the project would include consolidating a 17-acre landfill on the site into an 8-acre open space that would be capped.
Here’s another look from FlashEarth:
The project, which Bevans described as in its infancy stage, would include building a big chunk of the Centennial extension.
Curb and gutter exist for a half mile or so south of Fillmore, said James Mayerl, a city planner who is reviewing the MVS project. And Mayerl said the new project might be the impetus for actually completing Centennial.
In fact, the city is studying the transportation plan for the corridor, looking for ways to take pressure off the intersection of Fillmore and I-25. The long-planned Centennial extension would be a key piece of any plan.
Bevans said his clients do not have blueprints or a builder for the project. They simply are preparing the site for eventual development and alerting neighbors that the process is underway.
Many neighbors are apprehensive about the proposal. They already suffered the loss of 127 neighborhood homes when I-25 was realligned a decade ago and the sound wall erected. And they recently suffered the closure of their neighborhood school, Zebulon Pike Elementary.
But some neighbors, like Carol Gravenstein, view the project and the extension of Centennial as a way to resurrect the school if enough new families move into Mesa Springs.