Highlands Ranch senior center project moving forward

Board to make site selection official, hire engineers and architect


The process to build a new senior center in Highlands Ranch is taking another step forward with the official site selection expected to be approved by the Metro District Board of Directors this month.

Metro District Manager Mike Renshaw said an analysis of the proposed site, located at Highlands Ranch Parkway just east of Broadway, showed promise as preliminary studies show the land is in good shape and would cost less than expected to get it build-ready.

Selecting a site has stalled efforts to build the new $12 million senior center since 2017. The community has gone through at least three rounds of public-comment sessions to get to the point of selecting an official site.

Renshaw said the board gave approval to study the proposed site in March. The district has moved forward in studying the land's access concerns, reviewed potential water and drainage issues and assessed the overall land quality.

“We have been really busy moving this project forward,” Renshaw said. “The good news is we have a balanced site that could cost a lot less than expected.”

Originally, Renshaw said the district expected to pay more to level the land by bringing dirt in from an outside source. The analysis showed the land can be balanced by shifting excess dirt from one side of the property to the other.

“Saving these funds are huge right now as we continue to face rising construction costs,” Renshaw said.

During the July 27 board meeting, Renshaw said, he will be recommending the district move forward with the official site selection and in selecting the final engineering firm to conduct the next phase in the process.

Happy with the current timeline moving forward, Renshaw said he is confident the district will be hiring the project's architect to design the senior center building after the location and engineers are put in place.

If the project stays on track, Renshaw said he expects to start moving dirt by June 2022.

“We might be able to beat that estimate,” he said, “it just all depends on the scope of the work.”

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