Jan 2, 2013 11:30 AM by Lauren Molenburg
GOLDEN, Colo. (AP) - The federal government, Colorado, and several Denver-area communities have closed on a land exchange that will allow about 1,200 acres to be added to the Rocky Flats National Wildlife Refuge.
It also secures a right-of-way to build the Jefferson Parkway toll road.
As part of the swap, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is transferring a 300-foot wide strip on the eastern edge of the refuge to the Jefferson Public Parkway Highway Authority.
The swap helps connect the nearly 4,000-acre refuge to Denver-area trails and protects habitat of the threatened Preble's meadow jumping mouse. Gov. John Hickenlooper says the swap will bring nearly $9.5 million to support public schools and the state school trust.
The cities of Golden and Superior had challenged the swap.
(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.)
Picture: Rocky Flats National Wildlife Refuge