Nine months later, she finds herself in a fight that may end up on the November ballot.
"I was hopeful that once the city council made their decision that the neighbors would let us go ahead and proceed," said Bridenbaugh, director of the Rocky Mountain Deaf School.
Last fall, the deaf school made plans to purchase a parcel of land from Jefferson County Schools, 2090 Wright Street in Lakewood. But, neighbors say the issue of who actually owns the land is in question.
"It is clear to us that the City of Lakewood owns this property not the Jefferson County School District, so we believe that makes the request invalid," said Michael Davenport, spokesman for a group of neighbors calling themselves the 2090 Coalition.
Davenport says according to a development plan established in 1973, that property was designated as park land and was supposed to be turned over to the City of Lakewood.
The property sits adjacent to open space had been used for decades by residents as a park. But, after review by the Planning Commission and the Lakewood City Council, the land was re-zoned to allow the Rocky Mountain Deaf School to move forward with its plans.
"We believe that the city council has acted illegally in this matter," Davenport said.
Bridenbaugh disagrees. She says the city attorney, the lawyers for Jeffco School, and the Lakewood City Council are all in agreement that Lakewood never owned the land, and that sale is legal.
"That space has never been a dedicated open space by the City of Lakewood," Bridenbaugh said. "Jefferson County is the owner of that property."
Now, the 2090 Coalition is trying to get about 3,000 signatures by August 10 to get the city council to overturn its own decision or send the matter to Lakewood voters on the November ballot.
"It is a tall order, but you know we have a tremendous number of people that are very, very dedicated to ensuring that our city follows the law," Davenport said.
If the 2090 Coalition does not get enough signatures, then Davenport says neighbors will explore legal action to stop the construction of the 46,000 square-foot facility.
Bridenbaugh says if the school does not start the building process by November 7, the Rocky Mountain Deaf School will lose the $13 million grant provided by the Building Excellent Schools Today initiative. She says that would make it impossible for them to build a new school anywhere if they lose the money.
"It's been frustrating, actually, because the neighbors are saying that they support the school," Bridenbaugh said. "They're not against the school, but just not here."
Davenport says neighbors are against the procedures not the Rocky Mountain Deaf School.
"We are not against the deaf school and we think they do a very valuable service," Davenport said.
Davenport wants voters to decide the matter. Bridenbaugh says the matter has already been decided.
"I do think it's hard, but we will continue with our goal, and our goal is to build a new school," Bridenbaugh said.
(KUSA-TV © 2012 Multimedia Holdings Corporation)