Settlement Talks Initiated Over Controversial $1 Billion Centerra South Development in Loveland

Loveland, Colorado – The civil trial between McWhinney Real Estate Services and the city of Loveland has been canceled by a Larimer District Court judge. The cancellation comes after the Loveland City Council reversed its decision to rescind the Centerra South urban renewal plan and its master financing agreement. This reversal was made to allow both parties time to negotiate a settlement rather than go through with the trial.

McWhinney attorney Christopher Murray requested the trial be vacated and that any action on cross motions for a request for summary judgment be withheld until March 19. Judge Michelle Brinegar granted this request, giving both parties the opportunity to engage in settlement talks.

The City Council’s decision to reverse their earlier rescission was met with a 7-2 vote in favor. Mayor Jacki Marsh and Council member Erin Black were the sole dissenters. The majority of the council supported the reversal to avoid costly legal action and preserve the town’s reputation.

The legal clash began when Mayor Marsh successfully led the effort to rescind the resolution approving Centerra South and the master financing agreement. McWhinney, in response, filed a lawsuit against the city, seeking $10 million that they had already invested in the project.

The lawsuit claimed that the reversal was an illegal political maneuver orchestrated by the mayor and three newly elected council members. Marsh argued that the approval was illegal due to insufficient public notice and the improper use of farmland for development in an urban renewal area.

It remains unclear how the City Council’s decision will impact a separate lawsuit filed by five former council members over the November decision. Attorney Russell Sinnett, representing the former council members, stated that their case seeks different remedies than McWhinney’s lawsuit.

In addition to these legal battles, Loveland is facing a third lawsuit over City Council candidate Troy Krenning’s election prior to the Centerra South vote. The lawsuit alleges that several council members violated their fiduciary responsibilities and citizens’ rights to due process, as outlined in the Loveland City Charter and the 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. Elaborate details on this third lawsuit were not provided in the original article.

The canceled trial will allow both McWhinney and the city of Loveland an opportunity to engage in settlement negotiations. The outcome of these talks will determine the future of the Centerra South development and potentially avoid further legal disputes.