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Jan 1, 2013 6:00 PM by AP posted by Juice Godfrey

Rocky Flats refuge-Jefferson Parkway swap land

GOLDEN, Colo. (AP) - The federal government, Colorado, and several Denver-area communities have closed on a land exchange that will allow about 1,200 acres to be added to the Rocky Flats National Wildlife Refuge.

It also secures a right-of-way to build the Jefferson Parkway toll road.

As part of the swap, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is transferring a 300-foot wide strip on the eastern edge of the refuge to the Jefferson Public Parkway Highway Authority.

The swap helps connect the nearly 4,000-acre refuge to Denver-area trails and protects habitat of the threatened Preble's meadow jumping mouse. Gov. John Hickenlooper says the swap will bring nearly $9.5 million to support public schools and the state school trust.

The cities of Golden and Superior had challenged the swap.

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