Springs Council Bans Shake Shingles

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A proposed ordinance, tentatively approved by the Springs City Council, would make all new shake shingle roofing off limits as of Jan. 1.

It's a roofing ordinance supporters and advocates have been debating since June. Now after several public discussions, the city council is prepared to call for an end to all new shingles that are not fire-resistant.

On Tuesday, the council had a first reading of the new ordinance. Members voted to approve a shake shingle ban in Colorado Springs. The ban targets new and replacement roofs on apartment complexes and homes. All new roofs must use what's called a Class A shingle. That means they must be made of clay, tile, metal or asphalt.

A second reading is expected in two weeks, but city council members say that is merely a formality, and the ban will go into effect on Jan. 1.

So what does this ordinance mean for homeowners? If you currently have a shake shingle roof, you won't have to change it unless your roof needs to be replaced, but all new homes will need to have something other than shake shingles.

There were arguments in favor of allowing "some" forms of shake shingles to be exempt. New technology can make some kinds of shake more fire resistant. But fire officials wanted all wood roofing banned because they said it's a fire danger.

Springs Fire Chief Manuel Navarro is pleased with the decision. He said the ban will reduce the fire danger. He said with all the construction on the west side of the city, its only a matter of time before a major wildfire destroys homes.

"There's no question that we're (going to) have a fairly significant fire. The question is whether we can control it and when it will happen," Navarro said.

This ordinance will have to pass a second reading on Oct. 22 before it's official. It is expected to pass without further debate.