Can We Move Back to Rocky Flats?

Can We Move Back to Rocky Flats?

If you’ve ever lived in a town where a tragedy struck, you know that people tend to start rebuilding as quickly as they can. However, there are times when that just isn’t possible, and people must relocate away from the region due to the damage.

So, is Rocky Flats, Colorado one of those cities people just couldn’t move back to, or are people moving back in today?

Well, you probably need to know a little bit about Rocky Flats first. Rocky Flats is a plant located just outside of Golden, which is a town northwest of Denver. The plant assembled triggers and other similar devices for nuclear weapons. The factory was originally opened in 1953 and was a draw for many people looking for work, so the town grew when all sorts of people moved in.

Back in 1989, the FBI actually raided the facility and then shuttered its doors when the authorities found evidence of illegal waste disposal. A year later, in 1990, homeowners downwind of the plant actually filed a class-action suit due to the disposal of plutonium on their property. That suit settled for about $926 million, but in 2010 an appeals court threw it out.

Today, not many people are moving into the Rocky Flats area. The plant itself sprawled across 11 miles or so, and it is now on its way to becoming a wildlife refuge. So, animals are moving in, but not so many people. However, hundreds of thousands of people are currently living within ten miles of the site.

Jon Huser