Erie Deal Could Block Lafayette Development Plans on Tebo Property
Erie leaders on Tuesday are poised to approve an intergovernmental agreement with the town’s own urban renewal authority, a rare pact that essentially promises to stall any potential Lafayette development plans on the property adjacent to Erie’s Nine Mile Corner until Erie’s interests are finalized.
The motivation for the proposal is unclear — Erie leaders could not be reached for comment Friday and Lafayette spokespeople said they were unaware of the deal — though its introduction could exacerbate an already shaky return to negotiations surrounding the communities’ landmark Nine Mile intergovernmental agreement, halted abruptly last month after an 11th hour Colorado Supreme Court decision.
The communities in January announced plans to approve a sweeping IGA that would have, among other reconciliations, settled the town’s roughly three-year land spat. Lafayette in 2016 attempted to condemn 22 acres of Erie’s land at the southeast corner of U.S. 287 and Arapahoe Road, stalling its Nine Mile Corner development for the duration of litigation.
The Colorado Supreme Court rejected the suit on the eve of the IGA’s final approval, and the communities have since returned to the negotiating table and are expected to unveil a new agreement in the coming weeks.
A key stipulation in the proposed IGA would concede an eventual annexation of the Tebo property, at the southwest corner of the U.S. 287 and Arapahoe Road intersection, to Lafayette for future development. For that, Erie would receive 40 percent of the site’s eventual sales tax revenue and would have veto powers over any plans for the site.
If trustees approve this latest pact — and if the communities eventually approve the overall Nine Mile IGA — Erie leaders would essentially be pledging to use their regulatory powers to delay any of Lafayette’s development plans on the Tebo parcel until Erie’s Urban Renewal Authority gives the go-ahead.
Attorneys briefed on the matter Friday speculated the move might be an effort on Erie’s part to preempt any “sweetheart deals” that could possibly lure some of Erie’s prized Nine Mile anchor tenants to the Tebo property, though Erie officials could not be reached for comment on that notion.
Anthony Hahn: 303-473-1422, email@example.com or twitter.com/_anthonyhahn