A proposal to drill for natural gas under Westminster's Standley Lake and nearby dog park is off the table for now.
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British oil and gas company Highlands Natural Resources Corporation withdrew one of five drilling permits it filed Oct. 30 with the Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission that called for a drilling operation in parts Jefferson County, including areas of Westminster and Superior. The project would establish a number of drilling and natural gas collection sites in the area.
Two projects would have been in Westminster, one north of 100th Avenue and west of Simms, in the middle of the city's Westminster Hills off-leash dog park, and a second alongside the south western quarter of Standley Lake's shores.
The company is still pursuing the remaining permits which would allow natural gas drilling at 31 locations at the northern end of Indiana Street and State Highway 128, just east of McCaslin Boulevard in Superior.
Travis Duncan, spokesman for the state commission, said the company withdrew the Westminster permits at about 3 p.m. Nov. 8 and the commission stopped taking public comments on the permits.
Westminster city official said they learned on Nov. 7 that Highlands Natural Resources Corp. was seeking drilling permits around the lake and began directing residents to comment on the state commission's website.
“We learned about it from Jefferson County,” Joe Reid, public information officer for the City of Westminster, said. “We reached out to (the commission) immediately to work with them and figure out what was going on."
By the time the commission stopped taking public comments on the Standley Lake permit the morning of Nov. 9, the website had received 1,055 negative posts, urging the commission not to allow the drilling.
Westminster, Thornton, Northglenn and the Farmer's Reservoir and Irrigation Company all rely on Standley Lake as one of their main water supplies. Reid said Westminster estimates the reservoir provides drinking water to roughly 300,000 people in the Metro North area.
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