Chris Fellows (standing above), principle of HF Holdings, LLC, presents ideas for the northern portion of Lagae Ranch to the Castle Pines Parks Authority and more than 40 residents. (Photo by Tim Gamble)
By Lane Roberts
Future ideas for the northern portion of Lagae Ranch were recently shared with Castle Pines North (CPN) residents. The 240-acre parcel was purchased in late July by HF Holdings, LLC, and is located behind King Soopers, adjacent to HOA1.
Chris Fellows and Darwin Horan, principles for HF Holdings, LLC, hosted two public meetings in CPN during August to share preliminary concepts for the parcel and to gather feedback from residents. “Feedback from the community is important. Desires of the community will have a heavy influence on how we move forward,” said Fellows.
During the meetings, Fellows introduced major issues currently facing CPN, including the need for obtaining and funding renewable water resources. According to Fellows, CPN also has a need for additional schools and enhanced civic and recreational amenities. “Lagae is the only parcel of land left in this community that could meet those needs,” said Fellows.
Both the Castle Pines North Metro District and American Academy, a local charter school founded by CPN families, are in support of the proposed development of the parcel.
Metro District Board Votes to Support Proposed Lagae Ranch Project
On August 21, the CPN Metro District Board of Directors voted unanimously on a resolution to support the Lagae Ranch development. During the meeting, the Board indicated the importance of this development for future revenues needed to fund renewable water for the community.
If developed, Lagae Ranch could generate additional tap fees for new construction, and property tax revenues, which could help fund future renewable water resources for CPN. The District has nearly exhausted additional income from tap fees, as CPN approaches build out.
“We know we need to search for renewable water now, and it is very expensive,” said James McGrady, Metro District Manager. “The development of Lagae Ranch could generate additional revenues for the community to help fund these important projects.”
American Academy Charter School Announces Partnership with HF Holdings, LLC
On September 12, American Academy announced a partnership with HF Holdings, LLC. American Academy Board President and CPN resident, Erin Kane, spoke to more than 70 parents during a facility update meeting about the potential for a school site on the Lagae parcel.
According to Kane, HF Holdings has agreed to donate a portion of land on the Lagae parcel to American Academy. “We have a pledge to work with this school,” said Chris Fellows. “If we are successful, we are committed to help American Academy get a site in Castle Pines North.”
If built on Lagae Ranch, American Academy would help eliminate overcrowding issues currently facing other neighborhood schools. Preliminary plans for the new school call for 640 students, which would offer 203 additional seats for new students.
According to Kane, high-quality charter schools help increase property values and sell new homes. The proposed site offers a central location accessible to all American Academy families, including those living in Lone Tree, Highlands Ranch and Castle Rock. “This is beautiful land that is being offered to our school at no cost, in a ideal location,” said Kane.
The school recognizes the aggressive timeline and major obstacles that need to be overcome to make the dream of a new school a reality. Master plans, modifications, zoning, and platting are part of the Douglas County Planning approval process required to make this development happen.
“We’ve made something out of nothing before,” Kane told parents. “It is an aggressive timeline and we face many obstacles, but our school is willing to rally community support to assist with the County approval process for this development plan.”
American Academy was founded in 2005 by a group of families from CPN, and is temporarily located in a commericial store front in Lone Tree. The school features a Core Knowledge curriculum with an emphasis in math, science and technology, and finished first place in Douglas County during its first academic year. Currently, more than one third of American Academy students live in or near CPN. To find out more about American Academy, visit www.americanacademyk8.org.
Proposed Concepts for Lagae Ranch
Proposed concepts for the parcel also could include both single family homes and single family attached homes (townhomes.) The portion of Lagae Ranch owned by HF Holdings does not include any commerical property.
According to Fellows, the parcel has approximately 40 acres that would be “fantastic for a park and recreation center.”
Fellows continues to stress that initial concepts for the parcel are a “rough outline” of how the property could be planned. Both Fellows and Horan are committed to communicating with CPN residents throughout the development process.
Residents are encouraged to submit ideas and suggestions for the development of the northern portion of the Lagae parcel via e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org. All comments will be shared with the developers.