Developers of the proposed Sterling Ranch have lined up 4,200 acre-feet of Denver Basin groundwater


From the Denver Business Journal (Dennis Huspeni):

Officials from Sterling Ranch LLC submitted supplemental information to its zone change application showing the company has an option to purchase 4,200 acre-feet of water a year from the Hier ranching family of Castle Rock, Harold Smethills, president and CEO, confirmed Monday. The developers had to provide the proof in order to move forward with the development after a district judge ruled in August 2012 that the Douglas County Board of County Commissioners overstepped its authority when approving the zone change in 2011…

The water is non-tributary ground water that the Hier family owns the rights to, records filed with Douglas County show. “We had always planned to do it,” Smethills said of the agreement. “But the judge’s ruling forced us to move forward much more quickly than we had anticipated. … We figured ‘appeals take time, so let’s just move forward’.”[…]

Developers had previously purchased the rights to up to 186 million gallons of water annually from Aurora Water for the planned subdivision just before King’s ruling came down. After a 45-day comment period, the new information will go before the county’s planning commission and then the Board of County Commissioners, according to a county spokeswoman.

More South Platte River Basin coverage here. More Denver Basin Aquifer System coverage here.

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