State eyes land above Battle Mountain High School | VailDaily.com

State eyes land above Battle Mountain High School

Cliff Thompson
The State Land Board wants to exchange 275 acres east of Battle Mountain High School for land in Pueblo. The swap could create developable land where there is none.
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The State Land Board has notified Eagle County, as required by a new state law mandating state organizations work closer with local governments. Before the law was passed last year, the board would sell sections of land as large as 640 acres – creating development issues for local communities without being subject to their review.

“It’s early in the process,” says John Brejcha, the board’s deputy director.

Brejcha says the land being proposed is just portion of what the organization owns in Eagle-Vail. Another 275 acres remains on the north side of Interstate 70, he said, consisting of land leased for commercial space.

The State Land Board sells land it owns to help fund Colorado’s education system. It owns 6,100 acres in Eagle County.

Eagle County’s Director of Community Development, Keith Montag, says it’s he has not yet seen the details of the proposed trade. The land, on one of four ancient landslides, lies south of Interstate 70 through Dowd Junction.

Brejcha says the geology of the site will determine the value of the land, in turn determining how much acreage could be acquired in Pueblo, where the state wants to consolidate it holdings by acquiring a private block of land.

The state has approached the U.S. Forest Service about the swap, Brejcha says, but the federal agency is not interested.

“We’re putting together information to determine if we even want to move forward,” he says. “It could be months. We have to get surveys and appraisals back.”

Cliff Thompson can be reached at 949-0555 ext 450 or cthompson@vaildaily.com




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