Some concerns raised over area’s vulnerability to a flood
South Campus. Many students are unaware of this large parcel of land owned by CU, located on Table Mesa Drive and west of Highway 36, but the university has hopes for its future use.
Purchased in 1996 by CU, the land is eventually intended to provide an area for students to enjoy outdoor recreation.
“The South Campus is as large (in area) as the main campus,” Vice Chancellor Paul Tabolt said.
Some residents of Boulder do not want to see this previous 308 gravel quarry developed for university use. Some residents touted this desirable piece of property as great Open Space for Boulder County.
“Campus was growing and this seemed like a nice investment,” said CU Spokesman Bronson Hilliard.
The land was originally purchased with no specific visions, but is currently under discussion for future plans.
A main hurdle for future plans is the possibility of the property lying in a flood zone. The current flood plain analysis, approved last month, predicts hundreds more homes and businesses will be effected in the 100-year flood than previously thought. The study must still go through the City of Boulder planning commission as well as FEMA before final decisions about flood danger are made.
The study did predict that CU South Campus will stay dry even though it is protected by an earthen berm. Federal officials still need to inspect this land mass to ensure that it will hold if water from flood flows to CU South.
“The flood study does not show the property being overwhelmed (by water),” Hilliard said.
The question is to develop a vision that is feasible for CU but also will not hurt the community. The goal is also to work with the City of Boulder to mitigate downstream damage in the event of a flood.
CU students are involved with many athletics, especially sports with an individual focus, like running and biking. Developing South campus to serve the needs of students and provide facilities to the people of Boulder would be a “win-win” situation, Hilliard said.
Contact Campus Press Staff Writer Kathleen Straney at Kathleen.Straney@thecampuspress.com.