Tag Archives: Hentzell Park

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

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,
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.

The pdf document can be found here.

Mayor Hancock Begins His Assault On Parks Advocates


February 2014 Glendale Cherry Creek Chronicle


Former Councilwoman Thrown Out of Key-Park Meeting
City Boards Cleansed of Pro Park Members

See PDF provided by Dave Felice

By Keith Thompson

Denver Mayor Michael Hancock has been bedeviled by citizens who are protesting his administration’s commercialization and giveaway of Denver Parks and open space, including protesters who have shown up at public appearances of the mayor and members of his cabinet. Moreover, there has been increasing media coverage of his actions regarding parks and open space to his administrations ire. Westwords front page story for its December 31 edition was Titled “Parks and Wreck – In Mayor Hancock/s world-class city, everyone matters – except park lovers,” written by Allen Pendergast. The story blasts Hancocks commercialization of the city’s parks and the giving away for development of a portion of Hentzell Park.

Former Mayor Contributes

Park advocates are also gaining important allies in their fight against the powerful Denver mayor. Wellington Webb, the popular former mayor of Denver, and his wife Wilma recently joined Friends of Denver parks, the group that is fighting for Hentzell Park, and is the plaintiff in a lawsuit against the City. Reportedly the couple also made a generous financial contribution to the no-profit group. Webb wrote to the group, “I believe in the protection of Denver parks within the city and in the mountains. I do not support the use of park space for development.” He added, “I believe we should maintain what we have and acquire additional park space for future generations.” the fact that Webb, who was Denver’s first African American mayor, supports Hancock’s opponents in the Hentzell Park fight was a serious blow to Hancock’s pride and his standing in the African American community, according to insiders.

Hancock Publicity Campaign

In response Hancock has gone on a public relations campaign to bolster his deteriorating public image while privately retaliating against any and all parks advocates that hold positions on boards and commissions within the City and County of Denver. In December the mayor’s office announc­ed that Hancock was forming a new group to be titled “Mayors for Parks” with Fort Worth’s Mayor Betsey Price to purported­ly advocate for more federal funding for municipal parks. He wrote in an article in the Denver Business Journal: “Preserving and expanding our green, open spaces in Denver is not only smart, it is critical to the future success of our city.” Parks advocates in Denver found the mayor’s transparent public relations at­tempt to be somewhat disingenuous if not dishonest. Jamie Johnson ruefully noted, “He is nothing more than a world class hypocrite. While forming groups for con­cepts he apparently doesn’t believe in, why doesn’t he get together with former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani and start ‘May­ors for Marital Fidelity.’ It is not what you say in public it is what you do behind clos­ed doors that counts. ” Parks advocate Dave Felice was equal­ly blunt, “Frankly, I think this mayor is intent on destroying the parks.”

Hardball Or Dirty Politics?

While the mayor is publicly trying to soften his anti-park public image, his ad­ministration is purging all boards and com­mission of any and all parks advocates ac­cording to insiders. Continue reading

Friends of Denver Parks v City of Denver & DPS – Petition for Writ of Certiorari filed in Colorado Supreme Court February 4, 2014

Dear Friends,
Attached are copies of the Petition for Writ of Certiorari with Appendices 1-6 that we filed today in the Colorado Supreme Court.  We are asking the Supreme Court to review the decision of the Colorado Court of Appeals (which affirmed Judge Stern’s denial of our motion for preliminary injunction).  It is uncertain when we can expect a decision from the Supreme Court.
Our trial date in Denver District Court is May 19, 2014.
Today we took the deposition of Sandy Dennehy, the oldest daughter of Gerry Phipps, first owner of the Denver Broncos.  Sandy testified that as a child and as a young woman, she and numerous friends rode horses along Cherry Creek and picnicked in Hampden Heights North Park north of the Sullivan Dam.  This occurred during the eighteen year period from 1947 until the JFK golf course was built in 1965. The parkland was always open, used by the public for horseback riding, bicycling, walking, picnicking, and recreation.
Thanks to all of you for your encouragement and continued support of Friends of Denver Parks.
John Case