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Federal real estate auctions fuel urban growth

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Editor's note: This is the second part of a two-part series highlighting the nation-leading growth in the Las Vegas residential real estate market. (See Part 1: Las Vegas grows up...and up.) In June, bidders paid $707.2 million for 2,532 acres in the Las Vegas area. The auction drew an estimated 1,500 to 2,000 people, including some major development groups, for parcels as large as 1,940 acres–the equivalent of 3 square miles. It was the latest in a series of Bureau of Land Management auctions that are a provision of unique land-use laws in the region. These laws, the Southern Nevada Public Land Management Act of 1998 and the Clark County Conservation of Public Land and Natural Resources Act of 2002, regulate the sale of government land to sustain the development and growth of the Las Vegas metropolitan area. In exchange for the land sales, the laws provide for the acquisition of environmentally sensitive lands, improvements to wildlife and recreation areas, development of a...