County wants talks, threatens lawsuit over annexation
The Garfield County commissioners will ask the Glenwood Springs City Council to reconsider its controversial annexation and rezoning of the Red Feather Ridge subdivision on Four Mile Road.If city officials don’t reverse their decision, the county may file a lawsuit appealing the annexation.”Litigation is always an option. But the cost is pricey for both sides,” Garfield County Commissioner John Martin said after Monday’s meeting.Red Feather Ridge is a 149-unit subdivision planned on the old Martino Ranch, 130 acres southwest of Glenwood Springs on Four Mile Road. City Council voted 4-3 to annex and rezone the property Jan. 8. The action also extended Glenwood Springs’ urban growth boundary (see related story).Martin said the county commissioners have three concerns regarding Red Feather Ridge:-Traffic impacts to Four Mile Road.-Lack of a city plan for Four Mile Road before annexation occurred.-Failure of the city to address emergency access to Red Feather Ridge.”It’s an enclave,” Martin said.The county commissioners apparently discussed these issues in a closed-door session Monday with county attorney Don DeFord. After emerging from the session, the commissioners directed DeFord to draft a letter to the city outlining the concerns.Martin said the commissioners hope Glenwood Springs officials will come to the table and start addressing the county’s concerns after receiving DeFord’s letter.”This is an olive branch,” Martin said. “We’re trying to get a way for both boards to hear all the issues.”To win Glenwood Springs City Council approval, the developer, Oklahoma City-based MidFirst Bank, agreed to pay $400,000 for a roundabout at Four Mile and Airport roads, pay $2,500 per lot for transportation improvements, include 23 affordable housing units and donate 17 acres for a new city cemetery.If the project had remained under Garfield County zoning, the developer would be allowed to create 57 two-acre lots, plus a lot for a fire station that is now under construction.Contact Lynn Burton: 945-8515, ext. email@example.com
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