I had no idea which forum to put this in, because there doesn't seem to be one which addresses building one's own range.
A family member bought an 80 acre ranch in Colorado. Said family member wants to build a shooting range and, you guessed it, I am the "consultant." For now, at least.
80 acres sounds like a lot, when your house is on 0.1 acres. After visiting the property, I don't think it is nearly big enough to host a range.
The parcel is 5 miles outside a small town. Except for a small stream, the land is pancake-flat. Few trees, and those short and far between. The plot is an approximate 3:1 rectangle, ~350 yards by ~1100 yards, oriented north-south. Two sides are on county roads. The remaining sides border similar ranches, both occupied.
Obviously, berms would have to be constructed, as there is no natural backstop. So what happens when someone misses the berm? I've yet to send an ND clear over the berms at my club, but it could happen. Even if we could put the firing line at the extreme end of the parcel (we can't, there's a barn in the middle), 1100 yards is well short of the maximum range of all but the very weakest handgun rounds. Ricochets are yet another potential problem.
I just don't see it happening. Is there a safe way to build a range on 80 acres, given the absence of useful terrain features, trees, roads on two sides, and neighbors on the others?