What do you do?
Where do you work and what is your title?
I am development manager at the 214- acre Gold Hill Mesa development east of 21st Street.
What do you do there and/or what are you responsible for?
I manage, coordinate, and complete all horizontal street and lot development infrastructure for the project. This incudes over-lot grading and installation of sewer, water, electric, gas and major storm-sewer pipe and ponds. The city eventually takes over the maintenance of the streets, and our metro district takes over the landscape tracts and parks. I also serve on both the HOA and metro district boards, which gets me in tune with the needs and wishes of the homeowners; and I work with the city’s Urban Renewal Board and the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment to ensure all lots are constructed properly and safely.
How long have you been doing this kind of work (total)? How long on the Westside?
I have been in land development since 1994 and have managed Gold Hill Mesa since 2004.
What do you like best about it (other than quitting time)?
Gold Hill Mesa has been the most interesting, rewarding and challenging project of my career. It has been so much fun to be part of the extra steps taken, like installing a four-foot cap over tailings, educating vendors and builders about the environmental component and working with great people at the city, state and EPA to develop the vision of the owners and create a project that blends in and recognizes the Westside history and architecture. Even the architecture emphasizes Victorian houses typical of the old Westside. Personally, the best part is the use of double tree rows along major streets, great landscape design by our landscape architect, sod parkways and eclectic mixes of xeriscape landscaping in the yards so the site looks green and full but water-efficient. It will be awesome to complete the project and come back in a few years and say, “Damn, that looks good.”
If you could change one thing (other than pay), what would it be?
I’d want more of the home-buying public to realize the well-thought-out land plan at Gold Hill Mesa.
What part of your work did your training/education never prepare you for?
The absolute uncertainty of each day, which includes weather delays, heavy rains like in May 2015, March spring days when the wind howls and we keep our site intact, and delays in approvals or construction documents and we are forced to catch up. My education and training never prepared me for the need to constantly listen, revise and change product and lot sizes to meet current marketing demand and wishes of new homeowners with new tastes.
What makes working on the Westside special?
I grew up on the east side of Colorado Springs and had no idea how eclectic and unique the history, architecture and people are over here.
“What do you do?” is a regular feature in the Westside Pioneer. If you know someone who has an interesting job on the Westside (but doesn’t live here), he/she might be a candidate for this column! If you know someone who might qualify, give us a call at 471-6776.