AURORA | Some of the old will make way for the new 10.5-mile Aurora light rail line that is set to open in 2016.
RTD officials confirmed parts of the Aurora Park shopping center and portions of the Landon Park Apartments on South Sable Boulevard are being acquired to make room for the light rail’s path as it moves along the east side of Sable toward East Ellsworth
“The properties on Sable Boulevard have been identified, and all property owners have been notified,” said Tina Jaquez, spokeswoman for the RTD FasTracks I-225 Rail Line Project, about the acquisitions. “Once negotiations are finalized, the tenants of the apartments will be contacted to begin the relocation process,” she said.
Jaquez added that the impacts to each property will be different. She said some of Landon Park’s parking lot may be acquired to make room for a train gate crossing at Sable and East Bayaud Avenue. Other property acquisitions could involve only taking portions of landscaping owned by a
Christian Young, with Bridge Investment Group, who represents the owners of the Landon Park Apartments, said the final details of RTD’s plans to acquire property along Sable remain fluid. “It’s not possible at this point for us to determine the impact the project will have on Landon Park Apartments,” he said.
Jaquez said RTD has designed the train’s path to minimize property impacts as much as possible. “We will only be purchasing what is necessary for the project,” she said.
RTD can acquire private properties for public projects condemnation laws. The process is the same as what RTD used to pave the way through suburban portions of the West Rail line. Jaquez said the Aurora line is different in that RTD will acquire a total of 80 parcels for the project, most of them businesses. The Aurora line mostly follows the Interstate 225 highway, unlike the West Rail, which had to clear a path through well-established residential neighborhoods in Lakewood to be able to travel from Golden to Denver. “On the West (rail line), there were 322 acquisitions,” she said.
Jaquez said the existing RTD bus transfer station at East Centrepoint Drive and Sable will continue to serve as a transfer center between bus and rail throughout construction. When the train opens, the platform will be next to the new Aurora City Center
RTD will also be realigning the light rail’s path along Sable Boulevard from East Exposition to where it crosses Alameda and turns onto Ellsworth. RTD officials said the new alignment will be safer for traffic crossing through Sable and
“We have further refined (our) design and determined that for traffic movements through the intersection of Sable Boulevard and Alameda Avenue, it is safer for the train to remain on the east side through Ellsworth Avenue,” Jaquez told the Aurora Sentinel in May. RTD originally planned for the train to move through the center of Sable before it reached Alameda.
Construction along Sable Boulevard will not happen until late summer or fall, Jaquez said, because RTD is still working through property negotiations.