Friends of Red Rock proposes public look at Bock house before demolition

       The Friends of Red Rock Canyon would like Colorado Springs Parks to hold off on tearing down the old Bock house at Red Rock Canyon Open Space… at least for a little while.
       The Friends board voted at its Nov. 4 meeting to ask the city to first allow a public tour of the house to see if there is any interest in preserving the structure.
       City Parks Development Manager Terry Putman announced last month that the city cannot afford - nor has an urgent need to spend - the estimated $253,000 it would take to renovate the former Bock family residence. He said its demolition would be put out to bids.
       The Friends group, formed last August, has an agreement with City Parks to work together in planning and taking care of the new 788.1-acre open space property, located between the Westside's Midland area and the Crystal Hills neighborhood in Manitou Springs.
       The public-tour idea came from Don Ellis, one of the leaders of the citizen effort that saved Red Rock Canyon from housing developers in recent years. He said he thought the city might benefit from letting more people visit the house (and possibly suggest alternative ideas) before demolishing it.
       During board discussion, it was suggested that even a minimal preservation of the building site, such as for a partially enclosed shelter, might be appreciated by users of the open space, for ranger talks or as a refuge in bad weather.
       The 37-year-old structure is located about a mile south of the park entrance on High Street just south of Highway 24.

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