By Rick Sallinger

DENVER (CBS4)– A Denver District Court judge has denied requests to block a major project at Denver’s City Park that may go on for the next two years. Several people had filed a lawsuit saying the storm water project would be bad for the park, but the city insisted it’s needed for protection against floods.

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LaMone Noels heads the group City Park Friends and Neighbors and says she believes they should keep pressing the issue.

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“I was disappointed by the judge’s decision but I was not surprised.” she added, “We’ve got to keep on fighting to protect City Park because it’s a crown jewel for the city, it’s a regional attraction and we can’t let it go.”

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Judge David Goldberg ruled the city can go ahead with a planned closure of the course for building of a storm water management project.

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The project is designed to guard against once every 100 year floods.

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“They are using the argument that we have catastrophic risk of flooding it’s really up north,” said one of the plaintiffs Christine O’Connor.

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She and others believe it’s really because of plans to lower Interstate 70 near there.

The lawsuit argued some 300 trees will have to be removed on the golf course, affecting birds and wildlife. But the city countered with a new and better course will be created along in the old historic style with a big better clubhouse.

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A statement from Denver Public Works welcomed the judge’s ruling and called this, “a key opportunity to address the need for increased flood control to protect residents and other property owners…”

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Those who brought this lawsuit say they are not giving up and are trying to decide whether to appeal the order by the judge.

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CBS4’s Rick Sallinger is a Peabody award winning reporter who has been with the station more than two decades doing hard news and investigative reporting. Follow him on Twitter @ricksallinger.