Editorial by Tom Anthony
The Denver Union Stockyards Company was incorporated in 1882 by John Clough. I know this because I live in his old office building across the street from the Stockyards in Elyria. Remnants of the stock business in Denver include the Stock Show, the Stockyards, Colorado Serum Corp, Mountain Meadows Lamb Company, and Nestle Purina, plus a few odd specialty meat companies. The packing houses have been torn down since the early ‘80’s when a huge consolidation to rural areas took place due to fattening operations, and in order to make room for junkyards. The biggest consolidation was undertaken by Charlie Monfort, who sold out to Swifts’ in the ‘90’s and bought the Colorado Rockies baseball club, among other investments. Swifts’ then sold out to JVC, S.A.
Although the agribusiness trend has been to sanitize humans from their food sources a recent reversal in terms of goats and chickens has been taking place in Denver. Actually connecting the dots between grains, poop, insects, composting, and blood is going to be a healthy and educational direction for urbanism, overall. Eggs figure in there somewhere, as well as sperm, and that’s quite enough thank you.
The final “nail in the coffin” of rural/urban sanitation has now been proposed, however, by Gaylord Hotels. This is the $900 million project which has recently seized headlines, which requires a $300 odd million dollar tax subsidy and probably the relocation of the National Western Complex from Elyria, whose historic recreation center got “transitioned” last year because the City couldn’t find $200,000 in the budget. A new RTD commuter rail station stop near Tower Road will be required as well, and probably a change in flight paths for United Airlines. Stock Show would get its wide open spaces and Elyria would get something too, we don’t know what yet. The Denver Taxpayers would have to decide where to move the buildings they constructed and lease for $1 a year to Stock Show, since the Stock Show actually owns the land under them. And with any luck we’ll get a great “infill” project such as Cyprus Development has constructed at Denargo Market.
While Denverites will have to drive an average of 50 miles round trip further to attend Stock Show and probably the Model Train Expo and other wonderful attractions, it appears Suncor Refinery has plenty of room next to Swansea to expand their gasoline production facilities. The rural/urban separation can grow to a comfortable margin, and the food production industry separate itself further from the food consumers. And the downtown hotels can start to modify their business plans to “transition” into elderly care housing, while CHFA takes over the Colorado Convention Center for “affordable housing” and probably student housing for the Auraria Campus, which will be experiencing an influx of laid-off workers re-training for careers in psychology. Since the government obviously needs its head examined.