Brighton, Adams County preserve nearly 80 acres of farmland from development

For those yearning for a bit more undisturbed acreage in a fast-growing metro area, look to the north.

Brighton and Adams County teamed up with The Conservation Fund this week to preserve 79 acres of farmland along 144th Avenue and Sable Boulevard, just south of Brighton, in a traditionally agricultural area recently designated as Historic Splendid Valley.

The city and county used $2.5 million in Adams County open space sales tax revenue and Great Outdoors Colorado money to place a conservation easement on the land, ensuring it remains agricultural and free from development.

“The preservation of this area furthers the mission of Historic Splendid Valley to protect one of the state’s last remaining areas of urban agricultural land with available water rights to ensure that food production can continue for the benefit of the local community and the region,” Adams County said in a press release this week.

The farm is located in Denver’s northern suburbs and is surrounded on all sides by an explosion in single-family subdivisions and retail outlets to serve a growing population.

The farm had been owned by the Morimitsu family since 1939. Petrocco Farms leased it from the family before recently purchasing it. Petrocco grows cabbage, onions, leafy greens and sweet corn at the farm.

This week’s deal brings the total acreage preserved in the Historic Splendid Valley so far to 444 acres. That includes both privately owned land operating under agricultural conservation easements and land directly owned by Adams County or Brighton, which places it under agricultural preservation.

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