Northgate plans move ahead

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<B>By LAUREY LUMMUS</B> <FONT SIZE=-1><I>Staff Reporter</I></FONT>

Northgate, one of the largest master planned communities in the Springs,is back in private hands.

Italian developer Filipo Pola, who owns 950 acres of the area’s 1,500 acres,purchased the land for $4.2 million earlier this year from the ResolutionTrust Corp. The land had been in limbo for four years while legal issueswere resolved between the original developer and the RTC.

The business campus, comprised of four villages, will offer a full rangeof building sites and is being marketed as light industrial/business.

Pola is considering asking for revisions to the master plan and will startinfrastructure extensions within four to six months. Pola, whose familymanufactured mufflers in Italy, has several developments in California. Hewas drawn to Colorado Springs because of its growth and appealing settings.

One of Pola’s main concerns is keeping the environmental integrity intact,according to Nolan Schriner, owner of NES, which is serving as landscapearchitect. NES has been responsible for projects such as The Broadmoor andRancho Mirage, a desert retreat located outside of Palm Springs.

"The property is intended to be very well landscaped," said Schriner. "Itis important to all involved that we maintain the environmental aestheticsof the land, while developing the parcel into a high-end area."

Craig Anderson of Highland Commercial Group, which is marketing the project,said his thrust will be to attract Fortune 500 companies to the park. Andersonhas specialized in land sales in the Springs area for 14 years.

"The site and the master plan will attract big names and big companies,"said Anderson. "The area has several advantages over any other land in thearea."

These advantages include location, with Interstate 25 frontage access, proximityto the mountains, being located at the base of Pike’s Peak and the Air ForceAcademy. The land is also located in the District 20 school system, consideredone of the Springs’ most progressive school systems.

More enticements to Northgate include the proximity to the Briargate areaand the planned Powers Expressway Corridor, which will run through Northgate,providing direct access to Colorado Springs’ eastern quadrant.

Pola is also considering having a portion of the area re-zoned for residentialuse.

Schriner is working on the adjustment of the land use parcels to accommodatethe current market.

"When the land plan was originally drawn, businesses needed approximately50 acres for space; now, with all the new technology, they are able to makeaccommodations to have the same equipment within a 30-acre space," said Schriner.