The Home Place Ranch development received its first-phase green light last week.

The Monument Board of Trustees on Nov. 18 passed by a 6-1 vote an ordinance that would approve the preliminary/final planned development site plan for Home Place Ranch Phase One.

The ordinance returned to the board after its Sept. 16 meeting, where no action on the ordinance was taken and the request was made that the Tri-Lake Monument Fire Protection District review the ingress and egress of the development for emergencies. Additional information was also requested to verify the drainage plan for the site.

Home Place Ranch’s first phase looks to develop approximately 130 acres neighboring Homestead at Jackson Creek, Promontory Pointe and Sanctuary Point neighborhoods. At build-out, Home Place Ranch will neighbor Higby Estates to the west as well, totaling 431 acres from all phases.

Phase one involves 300 residential lots and 12 tracts for detached single-family housing. Homes in this phase are anticipated to start in the high $400,000 range. Some of Home Place Ranch will later include semi-custom and custom homes in the $500,000-$800,000 range, similar to Sanctuary Pointe.

Monument senior planner Jennifer Jones noted the density of homes in this phase would be less than that of Homestead at Jackson Creek and Promontory Pointe.

Planned are two access points and three emergency accesses gated with bollards. One of the emergency access points would make use of a 2,647-square-foot tract from the western cul-de-sac on Sanctuary Rim Drive connecting to Saber Creek Drive in Homestead at Jackson Creek. Fire protection district fire marshal Jamey Bumgarner, in his recommendations for approval, said the access through this tract should consist of a 16-foot-wide, all-weather surface and shall be completed with Filing 2 of the development.

“There are existing utility lines under [the tract] now,” Jones said. “The idea is, it’ll be a trail connection. … But if it needed to be, and only in an emergency situation, it could be used for emergency access whether its in or out.”

Bumgarner said the protection district, in its review of the plan, focused from the start on how to get people in and out of the development safely in an emergency.

“We review all development plans based on safety; life safety for our residents and life safety for our firefighters, quite honestly,” Bumgarner said. “We are really confident in what we have presented to you as the safest means we could utilize to get folks out of Home Place Ranch if we need to.”

The recommendation to add a second emergency access between Saber Creek and Sanctuary Rim Drive was also a point of contention for some of the trustees and during public comments.

It is the intent of the Home Place Ranch development to connect the existing Gleneagle Drive with Higby Road in a later phase. Jim McGrady, district manager with TriView Metropolitan District, said if approved, that could be a 3-4 month process.

McGrady said Home Place Ranch developer HR Green is willing to bring enough water to serve 242 homes of the 291 in the site plan to the table and pay an additional $130,000 to TriView for the shortfall of phase one within 30 days. In addition, HR Green agreed to finance two new wells for TriView, he said.

“We haven’t drilled a well in like 10 years. … The developer is essentially buying us two free wells,” McGrady added.

TriView anticipates collecting approximately $17.5 million in tap fees from the nearly 600 homes of Home Place Ranch.

After hearing public comments, discussion among trustees and information provided by representatives of HR Green, trustee Jim Romanello made the motion to approve the ordinance contingent upon the fire protection district’s recommendations and an acknowledgment that parties involved in the development desire to move toward connecting Gleneagle Drive and Higby Road in future phases. Bornstein seconded the motion. In the 6-1 vote, trustee Greg Coopman was the only vote against.

Coopman said at the end of the meeting the board needs to engage in more discussion and proactive solutions between the town, developers, the Lewis-Palmer School District, taxpayers and others to help the school district expand with the town’s growing population. “All I know is we can’t keep approving homes because we are developing and growing without serious consideration of how we are going to afford schools for these people.”

Load comments