News: Morrison Zoning Request Grows

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CCU Amends Morrison Zoning Request, May Move Elsewhere

Colorado Christian University is revising plans to build a new campus at the Morrison location for which it has long sought zoning approval. Instead, CCU will request the entire 284-acre parcel be zoned residential. The University intends to sell the property and use the proceeds to partially pay for construction of a new campus elsewhere.

The University, now located near the corner of Alameda Avenue and Garrison Street in Lakewood, Colorado, has spent years seeking campus zoning approval from the Jefferson County Board of Commissioners. The latest request, filed in March 2006, would have permitted construction of a 100-acre campus and 83 housing units. An earlier request, for a different plan, was withdrawn after an adverse recommendation by the county's Planning Commission.

"The Morrison property is absolutely gorgeous," commented CCU President Bill Armstrong. "It would have been a magnificent setting for the University. And we believe that our recent zoning request should and would be approved by Jefferson County Commissioners. It is a beautiful and environmentally sensitive plan which would greatly enhance both the immediate neighborhood and the area; an excellent use of this property which would serve the University well and add value to neighbors.

"In the long run, we believe most homeowners in the area would benefit from and appreciate having the University nearby. However, we have now decided to turn our attention to other opportunities which seem especially attractive as the University continues to grow.

"This was not an easy decision to make. Friends of the University gave us a portion of this property in 1959. We have gradually added to that holding over the years. Today this land is one of the most scenic and appealing parcels of undeveloped real estate anywhere in Colorado. But we believe alternative plans now on the drawing board will better serve students, our faculty, and staff," Armstrong concluded.

Over the next few months, CCU plans to look at several options including rebuilding at the present Lakewood location. Other sites are also under consideration. In the event their amended zoning request is denied, CCU may reopen its Foothills Campus, which comprises 53 acres: the western portion of the University's 284-acre holding in Morrison. This site is already zoned for campus development. The Foothills Campus has been home to various classes and activities for more than 40 years, although only limited operations have been conducted there in the past few.