City collects final $1 million from The Canyons
By Steve Baska with contribution by Terri Wiebold
Nearly four years to the day after approving its annexation agreement with The Canyons, the City of Castle Pines received the final $1 million impact fee payment from the developers.
According to the city’s 2009 annexation agreement with The Canyons developers, nearly $3 million was to paid to the city in impact fees. New developments typically pay an impact fee to a city to help pay for roads or other public facilities that must be built.
The city received $1,976,400 at the time of the annexation in 2009, and the remaining $1,000,000 was to be payable following the termination or amendment of a private HOA Agreement which prohibited the builder from developing the property in accordance with the maximum entitlement shown on the planned development (PD) for the project.*
“We paid a portion of the impact fee when we were first annexed to the city,” stated Canyons representative Mark Nickless, “and now we’re paying the balance.”
Castle Pines Mayor Jeff Huff said the money has not been earmarked for any particular project as of yet. The money went into the city’s general fund and is not obligated specifically to The Canyons, so it may be used for other purposes. “Council is in a budgeting process now for 2014 and we will take that additional revenue into account,” stated Huff. “It can be used on current streets and roads or for other uses.”
By way of comparison, this year’s 2013 proposed city budget had $4.2 million in expected total revenues.
Huff said he believes the Canyons development, which includes roughly 3,300 acres of undeveloped land in the city limits east of I-25, should prove to be good for the city. “From what I’ve seen, this is planned to be a high quality
development with a good price range of homes, with a number of large lots, and a mix of residential and commercial areas. The sales tax revenue generated will be used to benefit the residents of Castle Pines,” he said.
Although no time frame has been identified to begin actual development of the 2,500 residential homes and 250 acres of commercial area, Nickless stated: ‘The Canyons looks forward to commencing development on the property based on sustainable principles and exceptional planning very soon, and to continuing our great relationship with the Castle Pines community.”
*Editor’s Note: More than a decade ago, the developers of The Canyons signed an agreement with neighboring Happy Canyon HOA and The Pinery HOA, limiting future development on the property. When the city annexed The Canyons in 2009, it approved higher-density zoning. The city’s zoning could not go into effect, however, as long as the private agreement remained. The Pinery HOA voluntarily terminated its agreement earlier this year and Happy Canyon HOA recently completed binding arbitration, which also resulted in termination of its agreement.