By Michael Abeyta

DENVER (CBS4) – Colorado is known for its mountains like majestic Mount Evans, rugged Longs Peak and inspirational Pikes Peak, but “Shingle Mountain” isn’t one of them. Adams County Commissioner Steve O’Dorisio says, “It was a huge ugly pile of shingles.”

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“Shingle Mountain” sat in Adams County near the intersections of Interstate 25 and Interstate 76 for four years. It was an illegal dumping ground for 112,000 cubic yards of shingles, and it wasn’t just an eyesore, it was a health safety hazard as well.

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Resident and business owner Mike Fiore says, “If lightning struck, if kids got in here and tried to light a fire, this would have been a disaster.”

(credit: CBS)

Fiore decided it was time to do something. He was tired of looking at the mess and after a lot of number crunching he finally figured out a way to buy the lot and clean it up, but it was still an expensive project.

“I was a little scared to tell you the truth,” he admits.

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Of course, like climbing any mountain, the first step was the most daunting — and having a team behind him was key to his success.

“I could do the cleanup in-house. I talked to the landfill Republic Services to see how they could help us with their fee and then we also talked to the State of Colorado and they helped us with their fee per ton,” he told CBS4.

It was this collaboration that finally conquered the mountain of shingles. And now it’s just an empty lot.

(credit: CBS)

Fiore says Adams County is too valuable to let something like this happen again. He says he’s going to bring a high end industrial building to the site.

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“I want to clean this community up,” Fiore said.

Michael Abeyta