Category Archives: Resolution

School sits on former open space that activists want back — eventually

Attorney and parks advocates press case at Court of Appeals to overturn land swap involving Hampden Heights Open Space

By Jon Murray
The Denver Post

Two years after the Denver City Council cleared the way for a controversial land swap, children filed last month into a new elementary school built on former city-owned open space near Cherry Creek Reservoir.

But the Joe Shoemaker School’s opening hasn’t ended a legal fight by still-simmering Denver parks advocates over what they saw as an illegal giveaway of valuable park land, a charge disputed by city officials.

Dozens of the lawsuit’s supporters packed a Colorado Court of Appeals courtroom this month as their lawyer, who is appealing an earlier loss in Denver District Court, again pressed to return the land to city ownership.

That prospect has been complicated, of course, by Denver Public Schools’ construction of the building on the 11½-acre city parcel on Havana Street, which was swapped by the city for a central Denver former DPS administration building that soon will become a domestic violence resource center.

The opponents admit that if they prevail, their best-case scenario would be to win a court order for the land to be returned as city park land — but only decades from now, once the new school has outlived its usefulness.

Attorney John Case, who lives nearby, and other park advocates say they’re still fighting to protect more than just one park.

READ MORE HERE

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Resolution Passed By Denver County Republican Executive Council

On February 4, 2014 a resolution for the right of Denver Citizens to determine the use of Denver Parks by a vote of the people was passed unanimously by the Denver County Republican executive Council

 RESOLUTION FOR THE RIGHT OF DENVER CITIZENS TO DETERMINE THE USE OF DENVER PARKS BY A VOTE OF THE PEOPLE
WHEREAS, Denver is known for its abundant and beautiful park system and Denver citizens are justifiably proud of Mayor Speer’s legacy of preservation of land for park space for the enjoyment and leisure of the citizens of Denver, and
WHEREAS, Denver citizens have invested in homes and businesses adjacent to parks with an understanding of the contribution of such parks to their property value, and
WHEREAS, Denver City Charter, Section 2.4.5 requires a vote of the people before parkland can be sold, transferred, or otherwise converted to non-park use, and
WHEREAS, Denver currently has over twenty parks that are only partially protected from future sale or development and over forty parks that are not formally designated by ordinance as parks and therefore not protected at all from future sale or development, these differences in designation status not being commonly known by the citizens, and
WHEREAS The Mayor of Denver and the Denver City Council have pronounced that conversion of these unprotected parks is not subject to a vote of the people as defined in City Charter Section 2.4.5 and,
WHEREAS, the current Administration “de-designated” Hampden Heights North Park as a natural area and park and traded part of the park to Denver Public Schools, an entity immune to zoning rules, in exchange for a building at 1330 Fox Street, and
Whereas this “swap” constitutes a new precedent that endangers all Denver park lands, natural areas and open space, reduces the property values of citizens and businesses who have invested near parks, and denies citizens their right to vote or to petition for a vote,
NOW THEREFORE THE EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE OF THE DENVER REPUBLICAN PARTY DOES HEREBY RESOLVE:
The Executive Committee of the Republican Party of Denver decries the actions of the Denver Mayor, City Council and members of the Denver School Board in selling, trading, and developing city park land which belongs to the people of Denver and is owned by the city in trust for its citizens, and
The Executive Committee of the Republican Party of Denver resolves that any City action to sell, trade, or develop any city land currently used or maintained as a city park must be approved by vote of the people, as required by City Charter Section 2.4.5, regardless of whether such land is formally designated as a City park, and
The Executive Committee of the Republican Party of Denver calls on the Mayor, City Council and Denver School Board to reverse their recent action and return Hampden Heights North Park to protected park status.
EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE OF THE REPUBLICAN PARTY OF DENVER

The pdf document can be found here.

Resolution Passed By Denver Dems Central Committee

On February 1, 2014 a RESOLUTION FOR THE RIGHT OF DENVER CITIZENS TO DETERMINE THE USE OF DENVER PARKS BY A VOTE OF THE PEOPLE was passed by the Denver Democratic Central Committee by a vote of 80 in favor, 69 against.

RESOLUTION FOR THE RIGHT OF DENVER CITIZENS TO DETERMINE THE USE OF DENVER PARKS BY A VOTE OF THE PEOPLE

WHEREAS, Denver City Charter, Section 2.4.5 requires a vote of the people to allow a City park to be sold, transferred, or otherwise converted to non-park use; and
WHEREAS, Denver is known for its abundant and beautiful park system and Denver citizens are justifiably proud of Mayor Speer’s legacy of preservation of land for park space for the enjoyment and leisure of the citizens of Denver; and
WHEREAS, Denver citizens have clearly expressed an abiding desire to exercise their right to vote on any proposed conversion of a park; and
WHEREAS, Denver currently has over twenty parks that are only partially protected from future sale or development and over forty parks that are not designated by ordinance as parks and therefore not protected at all from future sale or development; and
WHEREAS, The Mayor of Denver and the Denver City Council have pronounced that conversion of these unprotected parks is not subject to a vote of the people as defined in City Charter Section 2.4.5 and, therefore be it
_________________________________________________________
RESOLVED, The Democratic Party of Denver graciously reminds the Mayor and City Council that the change in the status of their parks; and be it further
RESOLVED, The Democratic Party of Denver demands of the Mayor and City Council that any action to sell, trade or develop any land currently used or maintained as a City park be submitted to the people for a vote as required by City Charter Section 2.4.5, regardless of whether it is designated as a City park.

Presented for debate and adoption to:    THE DENVER DEMOCRATIC CENTRAL COMMITTEE
Committee Meeting of February 1, 2014
At George Washington High School, Denver, Colorado

This document as well as an Argument In Favor of the resolution can be found at HISTORY