Anticlimax at Ameya Preserve

Anticlimax at Ameya Preserve

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Mike England

If you believe in karma, chalk one up for the huge, retaliatory slap in the face that life delivered Wade Dokken, the wealthy developer whose failed Ameya Preserve recently went on the auction block. Reverting to its original name, Bullis Creek Ranch—once the site of over 300 proposed luxury homes—was listed with a minimum bid of $7.4 million less than Dokken reportedly paid for the property. Embattled from the start, the 11,000-acre, gated development south of Livingston famously touted sustainable, eco-friendly practices, drawing widespread claims of greenwashing from environmentalists who pointed out that enormous second homes are inherently unsustainable. Local opposition to the project—which included concerns about cultural conflicts and the disruption of wildlife migration—reached a climax after Dokken dismissed complaints as “class envy.” A lawsuit later erupted between Ameya and Museum of the Rockies paleontologist Jack Horner, who had publicly endorsed the project but failed to reap the expected monetary benefits. The real-estate crash put the final nail in the Ameya coffin—which is fine with at least one Livingston resident, who summed it up this way: “Payback’s a bitch.”

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