Homeowner Near Colorado Airport Sues Developer Over Jet Noise


SEPTEMBER 23, 1997
ARAPAHOE COUNTY, COLORADO

The Denver Post (Denver & The West, page B-02) reports that Arapahoe County, Colorado resident Kevin Evans is suing Esprit Homes over jet noise from Centennial Airport, the second busiest general aviation airport in the country. Evans purchased a $325,000 home from Esprit Homes, and argues that the representatives from the company did not disclose the home would be impacted by jet noise. Evans is asking for $900,000 in damages, the article notes.

According to the article, Evans is an attorney who visited the area twice to shop for a home before moving with his family from Chicago. He said, "My feeling is that the law says that the builder or anyone selling a home has to disclose material facts that would influence your decision to buy or not buy. We did not have a great deal of time to find a home. I think they took advantage of us."

Evans' house is about one mile north of the main runway at Centennial in the Hills at Cherry Creek Vista subdivision, the article says. The home is in an area where aircraft noise exceeds standards recommended by the Federal Aviation Administration for residential property.

However, Al Blum, a principal of Esprit Homes, said the Evans' contract and title policy did disclose information about aircraft overflights. Blum said Evans is "grasping at straws," and the company will defend the lawsuit vigorously.

The article goes on to say that according to Evans, the contract did disclose an overflight easement, which covers a substantial portion of the area near Centennial Airport. But Evans argues that the 30-year-old easement is not enough warning for a buyer of a newly built home inside a noise zone, the article reports. "The FAA says it's incompatible for residential use," Evans said. "They didn't disclose that, and it's not in the easement."

But Blum believes the disclosures are appropriate, the article reports. He also said that he doesn't expect other lawsuits from Evans' neighbors because they all received notice of the potential problems of living near an airport. Meanwhile, one of the company's directors, Mike Cooper, wants to build more homes in the area, and is hoping Greenwood Village voters will approve the annexation of a piece of Arapahoe County land for that purpose.