Planning commission votes against controversial Franktown development

CASTLE ROCK, Colo. -- The Douglas County Planning Commission voted against a controversial housing and business development proposed for Franktown on Monday.

Developers want to build 286 homes on roughly 80 acres and devote another 20 acres to businesses. The development would be built near the intersection of Highways 86 and 83 in Franktown.

Residents have spent months fighting against the developers, arguing the development will change their small town into an urban area.

“We don't want it. We don't want this development in our community. We want to stay the small town community we were designed to be,” Leah Ames said.

Besides changing the character of the rural town, residents argued the new development would deplete their already-strained water supply because the houses would tap into the same aquifer residents already pull from.

Residents said they would be forced to dig deeper wells to access water.

“We are overbuilding all around this area for the water we have here and no one is really paying any attention to that,” Dan Craig said.

“They aren't going to bring in public water, they are going to drill wells right in the middle of our community and drain our aquifers and leave us high and dry, so to speak,” Mike Mullinnix said.

At Monday night’s meeting, water experts brought in by the developers said Franktown’s current water supply could accommodate the new development.

Developers also said the development will keep the charm of the town. Developers said they’ll use traffic studies and public input to help manage the influx of new vehicles into the area.

Ultimately, members of the planning commission sided with residents, and told the developers the development goes against Franktown’s master plan as a rural village.

Members of the planning commission said they struggled to see how developers believed the proposed development fit with Franktown’s rural feel.

“It's a rush. It's a rush to know you can work so hard. You know no idea the hours and hours we have spent. The wonderful citizens of Franktown stood up.  When the hard work that you have done comes to fruition, there's nothing like it,” resident Diana Love said.

The planning commission will give its recommendation against the development to the Douglas County Board of Commissioners, which will have a final vote on July 25.