Fate of farmland area in Westminster draws varied opinions

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WESTMINSTER, Colo. (KDVR) — Community members in Westminster are pushing to preserve farmland in an area where a development company wants to build mixed-use housing.  

Next to Westminster castle, just under 300 acres of land showcase one of the most unobstructed views of the Front Range along the corridor from Denver to Boulder. The farmland is 100 years old, belonging to the Pillar of Fire Church.  

Neighbors in the area, like Gerald Sibayan, call it a landmark.  

“I’ve seen moose there one year, I’ve seen coyotes, rabbits, you name it,” he said, “It just seems that the sky is clearer we don’t have that congestion.” 

Now, there’s a growing fear among neighbors that the land won’t stay like this for long.  

That’s because Oread Capitol is currently seeking approval from city council to buy the property and build a mix-use subdivision. The “Uplands” proposal says it will create up to 1,531 dwelling units and 30,000 square feet of retail/office space in the “village center.”

There are four different development areas proposed, which plan to dedicate 21 acres of land to the City of Westminster to use for public parks.

Some people, like Ian Macdonald, are supportive of an area that would create an area for his kids to play.  

“I’m not inherently opposed to it. I think development is inevitable,” said Macdonald. “I think having new parks, having new housing, is a good thing.”  

However, others still have reservations.  

Karen Ray is spearheading efforts to keep the farmland as community space. Her Change.Org petition already has more than 7,000 signatures.  

“The infrastructure does not exist here for a big 2,350 unit development… The roads are narrow, they’re old, the pipes are old, we have water shortages,” Ray said.  

City Council has not approved the development plans for the proposed Uplands development. All four applications that the developer has filed with the City require review and consideration by the Planning Commission and City Council at public hearings. Those public hearings have not been scheduled yet. 

The City of Westminster says it values public input on all development applications. Those interested should email the project planner, Patrick Caldwell at pcaldwell@cityofwestminster.us with any comments or questions on the applications. 

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