Chapman Hill to get more land?

Roller derby women could soon get some elbow room in the parking lot of the Chapman Hill recreation area. The City Council on Tuesday approved $420,000 for the acquisition of adjacent property that could more than double its parking lot.

The undeveloped land along Florida Road is just to the north of Chapman Hill and Durango Gun Club, which leases its land from the city.

Because the area is becoming an increasingly popular place for skiers, roller skaters, ice skaters, mountain bikers and hikers, the city wanted to preserve the land for future consideration, said Kevin Hall, director of natural lands, trails and sustainability.

While there are no immediate plans to pave the area, officials estimate it could accommodate 80 parking spaces. The current parking lot at Chapman has 61 parking spots.

The sale is expected to close with the Coutlee Family Trust on Friday.

The land was offered to the city during the expansion of Florida Road. The sale price was based on a 2011 property appraisal. The city also expects to pay an additional $500 in closing costs.

The funding is coming from the city’s Open Space, Parks and Trails account, which is funded by a dedicated half-cent sales tax.

Durango would also pay the landowners $7,500 for a construction easement from the Florida Road expansion.

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