Court rules against CDOT on I-70 mineral rights |

Court rules against CDOT on I-70 mineral rights

The Associated Press
Aspen, CO Colorado

GLENWOOD SPRINGS, Colo. ” The Colorado Court of Appeals says the state Department of Transportation does not own rights to minerals underneath land it condemned to build Interstate 70 through Garfield County.

To build I-70, a predecessor to CDOT filed for condemnation in 1975 against Agnes Hunt for land between Silt and Rifle. Hunt was awarded compensation.

Gypsum Ranch, which acquired Hunt’s property in 2000, argued that CDOT acquired only a right of way across the land and a right for “subsurface support” for highway improvements, without gaining rights to oil and gas underneath.

The appeals court ruled April 16 that state transportation officials did not have the authority to take title to the mineral interest by means of condemnation.

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