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Commissioners OK Dinosaur Center Attraction

A tourist attraction that would be similar to the Rocky Mountain Dinosaur Center in Woodland Park has been given the green light by the Fremont County Board of Commissioners to be developed on eight mile hill west of Cañon City.   Dave and Zach Reynolds detailed their plans for the Royal Gorge Dinosaur Center to the commissioners at the August 11th board meeting.   The dinosaur attraction would feature animated dinosaurs, climbing attractions for kids, educational exhibits, a natural walking trail, ropes course, and retail sales. The 36 ½ acre site proposed for the new attraction is located along the north side of US Highway 50 just east of the turnoff to the Royal Gorge.

At the public hearing Zach Reynolds said the business plan is still being developed but that it’s intended to create new tourism jobs and give visitors another reason to stay longer in the Royal Gorge region.  The commissioners asked Reynolds about his plans for water for domestic consumption and for a fire system. He said he plans to use hauled water as other established businesses in that area do, and a 53,000-gallon water cistern will be on site, along with two hydrants, for fire protection.  Reynolds said they are targeting an opening date in spring 2016, depending on the delivery of building materials.

There was no citizen input offered at the public hearing.   The Board of Commissioners voted unanimously to approve the Commercial Development Plan for the attraction.

The commissioners also heard no public comment during a hearing on a zone change request for Jaime Kelly and Craig Scheer.   The commissioners approved a zone change from Business Zoning to Agricultural Estates for a parcel of property in the Colorado Acres area of Copper Gulch where they hope to build a new residence along County Road 27A.

In other business at the August 11th board meeting the commissioners:

  • Voted to accept the Fremont County Master Plan which was updated over the last several years and formally adopted recently by the County Planning Commission;
  • Approved a land lease for Hanger #8 at the Fremont County Airport to Mat Clark doing business as Superior Systems L.L.C.;
  • Took note of a Proclamation from Governor John Hickenlooper declaring August as “Child Support Services Month” in Colorado.