New Shopping Mall Could Face Hurdles From Residents

A Minneapolis-based corporation plans to build a major shopping plaza north of 24 Road and Interstate 70, but could face challenges from local residents as a change in planning zone status would be required for part of the project.

Opus Corporation wants to build the Colorado River Marketplace, a 561, 800 square foot shopping center on 56 acres of what are currently hay fields and farmland. Roughly the western half of the property is just inside Grand Junction's 24 Road Planning Corridor, which has specific height, architectural and landscaping requirements. Grand Junction Principle Planner David Thornton says the developer has already agreed to those stipulations.

The remainder of the property would also fall under the same building and landscaping restrictions, but as the land is currently not designated under zoning regulations a zoning designation would be required.

Thornton says that zoning change would require public hearings. Concerns from residents about increased traffic and flows to and from the Center could create hurdles to the project.

Hearings on the zoning change are yet to be scheduled by the city Planning Department, who says have few additional details on the Marketplace at this time.

According to the Opus Corporation's web site Colorado River Marketplace has a projected completion date of July of 2008.