Saturday, June 5, 2021

Whiskey Is For Drinking, Water Is For Fighting


This is a Northern Colorado specific blog that may be of limited appeal to readers from out of the area.

The City of Thornton was Colorado’s first fully planned community. Located ten miles North of Denver and between the then planned Interstate Highways (I-25/I-76) the town, with one square mile and a population of 8,640 was incorporated in 1956. Since then it has grown to 38 square miles and a population of 136,000+.

Without water, growth is nearly impossible and Thornton focused their eyes on the Cache la Poudre River which flows through Fort Collins (Larimer County) and Greeley (Weld County) where it merges with the South Platte.

Early settlers obtained water rights. Thornton started acquiring many of these farms for their water rights. Shortsighted, wanting only the water rights, they dried up the farms and tore down the farm houses and outbuildings.  The once productive farm lands became home to noxious weeds and litter. This caused extreme resentment in Larimer and Weld Counties. The resentment lives on today as Thornton tries to build a pipeline from Fort Collins to Thornton.

Thornton is building their pipeline where they can. Evidently their strategy is, if enough is built, they can muster enough political and/or court pressure to force Weld and Larimer counties to give in.

WSF’s forecast? Might work in another twenty years.

An aunt and uncle bought a house there in 1956. These original houses were 1,000 sq ft 3 bedroom GI Bill/VA Loan targeted.

Circa 1998 I managed a used car “pot lot” in Thornton. Trust me, it wasn’t an upscale area. Few of the years I worked car sales did I “carry” but in Thornton I did.


Old NFO said...

If they get it, it will be too little too late...

Well Seasoned Fool said...


LL said...

The State of Colorado needs to issue a building moratorium unless a municipality can show that they have the water and other infrastructure to make it work.

We all know that developers bribe politicians. It's as old as time. As old as the 'oldest profession'. So that strategy might not work.

Well Seasoned Fool said...

There is a minor bureaucratic civil war among the surrounding communities. A few years ago developer dark money helped an area become a new county (Broomfield). Early 2000-2004 the towns were annexing county land (against the local's wishes) but didn't have the money to provide services (like snow plowing). There are acres of new homes, all two story, on tiny lots.

I shouldn't complain as I do a lot of delivering dun/default mortgage notices in these developments.

Forward in Christ said...
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