Land Acquisition & Site Preparation

The National Western Center redevelopment requires the acquisition of 10 residential parcels and 28 commercial parcels. To ensure a smooth transition for all residents, a contracted right-of-way (ROW) specialist and an interpreter from Right of Way Service company H.C. Peck, have been hired by the City and County of Denver specifically for this project. This team works with all displaced occupants, including both renters and property owners.

To provide equitable treatment for people with property being acquired for the National Western Center project, the City and County of Denver has adopted the Uniform Relocation Assistance and Real Property Acquisition Policies Act of 1970. This is also known as the Uniform Relocation Act and all federal, state and local government agencies must comply with the policies and provisions set forth in the Uniform Relocation Act if projects are receiving federal funding. The National Western Center is not currently receiving any federal funds but the City and County of Denver has decided to follow these rules in good faith.

Acquisition Process and Benefits:

  • City and County of Denver negotiates a purchase price with property owners, with City and County of Denver reimbursing property owners for the reasonable cost of obtaining their own appraisal.
  • City and County of Denver works with displaced residents to identify a suitable replacement property.
  • For displaced owner occupants, consistent with applicable guidelines, the City and County of Denver purchases the property at Fair Market Value. If there is a difference in the value of their home and a similar replacement property, the City and County of Denver pays the difference. In addition, the City and County of Denver pays all moving expenses for displaced owner occupants.
  • For displaced commercial property owners, the City and County of Denver purchases the property for Fair Market Value and reimburses owners the costs of re-establishment in a new market, up to $25,000.
  • Renters of impacted residential properties must be relocated to appropriate housing and assisted in moving. If the rent is higher at the new property, City and County of Denver will pay the difference for up to 42 months. This payment may be provided as a lump sum if used for a down payment for a home purchase.
  • Residents are not asked to move until a decent, safe and sanitary property has been identified that is available on the market for purchase or rent.

Role of Eminent Domain

City and County of Denver has the legal ability to apply eminent domain (the right to purchase private property for a public purpose with payment of just compensation); however, the need to undergo a condemnation process under eminent domain occurs very rarely in transactions where City and County of Denver and the property owner have not finalized, after good faith negotiations, a mutually acceptable agreement on just compensation.
All persons whose property is going to be acquired for this project have been notified. If you have any questions regarding this effort, please contact Katy Spritzer or 720-865-2510.

For more information regarding this process, please see below:

Site Preparation

In addition to land acquisition, the National Western Center team is taking steps to prepare the site for construction and ensure safe and environmentally conscious actions for each area of the campus. The National Western Center team is also collaborating with Historic Denver and the State Historic Preservation Office to identify and preserve items of historical significance.

This work begins with a thorough environmental assessment, including a survey of the property, testing for hazardous materials, environmental reporting, and a plan and scope of work. Once a strategy has been established, abatement will occur to remove and dispose of all environmental concerns per regulations set by the Denver Department of Environmental Health (DEH) and the Colorado Department of Public Health and the Environment (CDPHE). Construction will follow City and County of Denver noise ordinances and utilize dust control measures, such as wetting the structures and use of dust deflection screening or fencing.

Ongoing testing and monitoring for environmental and safety concerns will continue through the systematic removal, recycling, and disposal of present site improvements. The cleared areas will be graded and the soil stabilized with mulch, sod, green space, asphalt, or concrete millings, depending on the area of interest.

To ensure the highest safety measures throughout this process, the National Western Center will be working with the following organizations to provide additional project oversight:

Environmental Surveys

  • Department of Environmental Health (DEH)
  • Public Works (PW)
  • National Western Center Office (NWCO)

Abatement

  • Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE)
  • Environmental Monitoring Consultant (EMC)
  • DEH
  • PW
  • NWCO

Demolition and Leave-Behind

  • Community Planning and Development Building Inspections (CPD)
  • Wastewater Management Division (WMD)
  • Engineering and Regulatory Analytics (ERA)
  • Right of Way Inspections (ROW)
  • CDPHE, EMC, DEH, PW, NWCO

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