FOUNTAIN, Colo. (KRDO) -- With all of the growth and demand for housing in the Pikes Peak region, it's become almost routine for landowners and developers to seek annexation into a city limit for a reliable water supply and other services.
We rarely hear of a landowner who requests "de-annexation," or being taken out of a city limit.
But that's exactly what's happening in Fountain.
The owner and developer of the 2,400-acre Kane Ranch property, located south of Squirrel Creek Road on the east side of the city, filed a request to revert back into unincorporated El Paso County.
That request was filed a month ago, over concerns that the water supply isn't adequate enough to build thousands of homes on the property.
Fountain annexed the property in 2008 and has since been trying to get water and other utilities and services into the area, in order to make future development profitable and successful.
El Paso County commissioners discussed the request at its meeting Thursday; commissioners have no say in whether to accept or deny the request because that decision rests with the Fountain City Council.
However, commissioners want to weigh the potential impacts of the property returning to the county -- such as an increased responsibility to maintain roads at a time when the county doesn't have money to maintain many of its existing roads.
The property, known as Kane Ranch, is owned by The Corundum Group V, LLC, and the developer is Silver Cross Development, Inc., of Colorado Springs.
The pair also has a 3,200-acre parcel immediately north of Kane Ranch, and has already applied for annexation of that parcel by Colorado Springs.
Whether Colorado Springs annexes one or both properties, the situation would present a major challenge in providing water, utilities and services to such a large area in a short time period.
"We all need to sit down and talk about the logistics of this," said Todd Evans, deputy city manager for Fountain. "We need to try to prevent any negative impacts. If Colorado Springs Utilities ends up providing the water supply to new homes, it's not going to affect just Colorado Springs. It's going to affect the entire region."
County staff will meet later this month with the owner, developer and officials from Fountain and Colorado Springs about the requested disconnect from Fountain; the Fountain City Council expects a vote on the matter early next year.
Fountain Mayor Sharon Thompson issued a release Thursday evening, stating that she looks forward to those discussions.
"We're hoping to learn more about Colorado Springs' plan for the area," she wrote. "Those discussions will shape our decision."