The Kholghy family, owners of Authentic Persian & Oriental Rugs, are at war with the City of Glendale over the fate of their property on Colorado Boulevard. In the rug business for more than thirty years — with 25 of those years at their current location at 550 South Colorado Boulevard — the family is now fighting for the 5.4 acres they own that the city has declared "blighted." If Glendale's move succeeds, the city plans to use the Kholghys' section of "blighted" property as part of its 22-acre "Glendale 180" Entertainment District that will run alongside Cherry Creek.
But the family isn't keeping quiet about what they feel is an abuse of eminent domain laws. To shed some light on their situation, they're throwing a Blighted Block Party this weekend in the endangered lot surrounding Authentic Persian & Oriental Rugs. And they're inviting everyone to enjoy food trucks, a bouncy castle, face-painting and more, with the idea of rallying the community to their cause while also educating folks about how eminent domain can affect local businesses.
"When you talk to the everyday person — someone who isn't a lawyer — they don't know that eminent domain can be used to take land away for a development like this," rug store co-owner Nasrin Kholghy told me when I spotted the block-party sign and stopped in the store earlier this week. "The average person thinks eminent domain is just used for things like roads. If they knew this would be possible, I don't think they would sit quiet. We want to let people know that by using eminent domain, you can own something outright and the city can still decide that if they want to take it, they can."
While her family has the resources to fight this issue, she notes, many smaller businesses don't. So the Kholghys hope that by throwing the family-friendly Blighted Block Party, they can spread awareness about eminent domain abuse and get communities involved in keeping local businesses like theirs alive and thriving. "All I know is, I have a good business, I love it here and I'm not going anywhere," says Nasrin Kholghy.
The Blighted Block Party goes down from 3 to 6 p.m. this Saturday, June 13, at Authentic Persian & Oriental Rugs, 550 South Colorado Boulevard. For more information on both the event and the Kholghy family's fight with Glendale, visit their website.
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