Known As 'Super Slab' By Residents, Project Now Called Prairie Falcon Parkway Express
10:49 AM, Aug 29, 2006
An estimated 4,000 property owners are receiving letters this week informing them that their land could be part of a new toll road on the plains of eastern Colorado.Known by critics as the "Super Slab," the proposed road is officially called the Prairie Falcon Parkway Express. It is a 210-mile road that would run from north of Fort Collins to south of Pueblo.Thousands of rural landowners have come together to fight it.The area in discussion has more animals than people and that's the way homeowner Rick Brown wants to keep it."We certainly plan to fight this every step of the way and do everything we can to prevail," said Brown.Backers of the proposed toll road said Interstate 25 is overcrowded and the state desperately needs another north-south transportation corridor."Having a privately financed infrastructure project would be beneficial to Colorado and allow the state to use limited resources elsewhere," said Jason Hopfer, with the Prairie Falcon Parkway Express.Outraged landowners who said they fear the road would bring more development got the state legislature involved. The legislature changed laws so that only the Department of Transportation, not a private company, has the power to take private property.The proposed area for the road has since been narrowed and the name has been changed. However, the opposition against the proposed toll road and the propenents have stayed the same in their determination. Both sides argue they have a solid case."There is no public interest that would be served by this particular project," said Brown."Transportation funding in Colorado is at its very limit," said Hopfer.A study would first have to conclude that a statewide transportation demand existed. The study would have to determine that an added road would be in the public's interest and that there was environmental compliance to water and air issues.