1st building takes shape at Gold Hill

       After more than a year of workers digging in the dirt, Gold Hill Mesa has begun sprouting its first building.
       Nunn Construction Company crews have begun installing steel beams for the Exchange Building, which will become the 20,000-square-foot community center for the 214-acre residential-commercial development on the site of the former Golden Cycle mill east of 21st Street.
       Slated for completion in November, the building is part of Gold Hill's Phase 1, Filing 1, located north of Lower Gold Camp Road.
       Foundation construction for Filing 1's eight model homes and one multifamily building is slated to be started by John Laing Homes before July, according to Bob Willard, manager of the Gold Hill Mesa Township LLC.
       “There are 70 people working on the site now,” he said. “By the end of July, there could be 200.”
       The development has city approval for 168 homes in Filing 1. Grading also began this spring on Filing 2, just west of it and abutting 21st Street. Together, the two filings take up 52 acres.
       Grading on Filing 1 had begun in March 2005; this was followed by the laying of underground utilities, plus extensive drainage work and lot-shaping in conjunction with health requirements related to building on a site that was used in the first half of the 20th century to chemically mill gold from ore. The work included elimination of the decades-old, drainage-gouged “rills” above Fountain Creek along Highway 24.
       Other Gold Hill updates:
      
  • The widening of Lower Gold Camp Road between 21st Street and Millstream Terrace started this week and is expected to last two months.
          
  • Development of the first of two retention ponds to filter runoff before it gets into Fountain Creek is in the final stages of design and engineering and is likely to be under construction by mid- to late July. Temporary filtering of drainage is being supplied by a silt fence.
          
  • Installation of a 16-inch water line that will tie Gold Hill Mesa with a major city water line along Eighth Street forced the closure of Rio Grande Street between Lower Gold Camp Road and Eighth Street most of this week. Willard said the line will also help water pressure to other homes in that area when it is opened up next fall.

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