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Resident reacts to Bozeman Health's drafting land use plan for Highland Glen

Posted at 5:58 PM, Jan 20, 2023
and last updated 2023-01-23 16:34:12-05

BOZEMAN — A popular recreational spot called Highland Glen may be turned into a commercial area in the future according to Bozeman Health’s draft land plan.

“It’s a good place to ski, walk, hike and observe wildlife,” said Harry Benham who has lived in his home overlooking Highland Glen since 1990.

He says he’s spent a lot of his time recreating in the area and would hate to see it affected by the rapid growth of Bozeman.

“We don’t need another gas station, convenience store, that type of stuff,” said Benham.

But right now, the hospital is in the process of drafting a plan to develop the Highland Glen, which has been owned by Bozeman health for about 70 years. In 2006, they began creating what Denise Juneau, the chief government and community affairs officer calls…

“A vision for what that piece of land could be, should it ever be developed,” said Juneau.

Due to the city of Bozeman’s update to its growth policy in 2020, Bozeman Health needed to rework that vision. Juneau says the new “vision,” is a commercial area right across from the hospital. Neighborhoods, hotels for patients and families, and possibly expanding the hospital itself.

“The area, because it’s so big, we really feel like we need to be a good community partner and meet those needs,” said Juneau.

Even though Juneau says they have a vision to keep Bozeman Health growing, they still have a responsibility to keep the community happy. For the past 6 months, she says they’ve been seeking input from the public.

“The number one thing we heard from everybody was, ‘preserve that Highland Glen recreation area’,” said Juneau.

As well as the agricultural land. About 310 acres of undeveloped agricultural land and about 140 acres of trails exist at Highland glen. This will not be affected if solid plans to develop ever occur.

“I’m fully supportive of that,” said Benham.


“I’m somewhat queasy about the commercial aspect,” said Benham. “A 16-story hotel isn’t exactly what we want to see here.”

Even though Benham is worried about buildings blocking his view of the Bridgers, what he wouldn’t mind seeing?

“A nice pub/restaurant combination within walking distance would be great for the neighborhood,” said Benham.

Juneau says there is still a long process before any plans are adopted. In the meantime, there is still an opportunity for people to comment on the draft plan. To do so, click here.