A couple call-ups tonight. Reminder: Call-up is the official term for Does Council Want to Review This Decision or Vote?
Prob will be a little discussion tonight on the redevelopment of the Millenium Harvest Hotel. Plan is to make it into 295 dwellings, likely student apartments.

Presentation: documents.bouldercolorado.gov/WebLink/DocVie…
Quick notes on this one:
The Harvest Hotel was constructed in 1958. There are some *great* old photos in the presentation that I shared above.

The new build would be three 4-story buildings with the following mix of housing:
- 195 4BR
- 12 3BR
- 30 2BR
- 58 1BR
Of course, this doesn't have to be student housing, but given the location, it's likely to serve a lot of students.
A recent CU Boulder Housing Master Plan found “very low levels of vacancy (<1%) in student-oriented properties that cater specifically to student renters compared to the larger market”

Read that fascinating document here: drive.google.com/file/d/12MCjqG…
Developers are asking for a46% parking reduction - 712 spots currently required by zoning. They want to build 387 parking spaces instead
Only other interesting factoid is that this is in the 100-yr floodplain.

Staff hoping to do some bank restoration during the redevelopment, bc it apparently needs it.
Wallach: The project is intended for students. Is it restricted to students?

Danica Powell from Trestle Strategy Group: No.

(Actually think that's illegal)
Wallach Sigh-O-Meter: 0.35 (it was more of a huff)
Add that to your tally, Todd.
Wallach: Is there anything that bars the applicant from vastly increasing the rents and turning it into a non-student entity?

Planner Sloane Walbert: There's no regulations regarding rent. (Rent control is illegal in CO)
Powell: "We'll be paying $15M cash-in-lieu" to the city's affordable housing fund.

Powell: Bc so many of them are 4BR, they will be somewhat more affordable. But they'll charge market rents.
Wallach: What about other projects from this applicant? How have they been received? Did the preserve quiet enjoyment for neighbors, etc?

Walbert: That's not part of concept plan, and I'm not sure we'd analyze that as part of any regulatory process.
Andrew Costas from Landmark(?): We're an institutional property owner/manager. Thousands of beds managed. "We find our experience in managing these types of projects all over the country ... controls any sort of behavioral issues."
"We're also willing to do a good neighbor agreement," Costas says.
Winer: What about the parking reduction? How did you settle on that # of parking spots, and what happens if there's more cars than that? "It seems like a pretty low figure, especially if it's graduate students as well."
Costas: "We surveyed similar projects in Boulder." Talked to property managers and asked how many spaces are actually used. Parking won't be free; residents have to pay for it.
Also offers to "maintain a towing agreement" if residents or guests are parking elsewhere, Costas says.
Powell going over transportation demand management: "More than Eco-Passes, how do we provide more bike parking" or show that you can live without a car?

"There's a ton of parking there now" and we're retaining it.
I feel like CU students do far better than the general population at not driving and/or owning cars. The younger generation generally is good at that, no? Haven't I read stories about kids not driving?
Speer picking up on that thread: "We have so many options for biking and car share. Can we go further with the parking reduction, have even fewer cars here?"
TAB may weigh in on that
Speer: What neighborhoods are nearby? When I think of this area, there's student housing, the uni and the shopping center, right?
Walbert: Across 28th St to the east, there are homes sprinkled in with commercial (along Boulder Creek, kinda behind Scott Carpenter)
Powell: We've done a study to look at that, bc there's not any on-street parking anywhere nearby. But we want to show our neighbors we're not going to push cars into their private parking lots.
Speer: There's a plan to have a BPD officer on-site. Is that typical for these types of properties? Is this unique?

Walbert: There's been some discussion with the parks dept on how that private/public open space will be managed. Is that what you mean?
Speer doesn't think so. She thinks there was a reference to a cop living on-site. Page 34 in the packet... I missed that one.
Costas: "What we've done in other places is that we've offered a unit free of charge to a local police officer. It's not meant to be a substation or outpost, but instead to offer an affordable unit. They'll typically do some courtesy walks."
"We see the benefit of the affordable unit, plus we like having that officer on-site," Costas says.
Speer asks about the tennis courts nearby, which users have been concerned may go away.
Per staff notes, under public feedback: “Concerns voiced regarding the loss of the tennis facilities for the Rocky Mountain Tennis Center and accommodating other businesses currently operating on the site, including the Dream Makers Preschool and Single Mountain Bike Adventures.”
Benjamin: Can we have a plan to phase out parking as the need lessens over time? This project is going to last a long time. I'm thinking about all that pavement.
Mentions Boulder's climate goals and the site's location on a transit artery and literally *right* next to Boulder Creek.
Walbert: I think it would be pretty possible to convert parking into open space or other uses, so long as they are compatible with floodplain regulations
Benjamin: Are these units self-contained? Is there a way to get more shared spaces? That could help with affordability.
Powell: I think we're limited by the zoning, which allows 4BR per unit. That means 4BR, 1 kitchen. "Basically, it comes down to kitchen."
There's a lot of shared amenities, Powell says, like the open space. 55% of the site.
"As far as I know, the zoning would restrict us from creating more communal spaces. I don't believe that's allowable or part of this equation today," Powell says.
Benjamin: That part along the creek seems to get used a lot recreationally by college and/or high school kids. Are we gonna preserve that, improve it?
Save the fish observatory!
Powell: "They're jumping from the fish observatory and doing backflips, which is awesome and super scary depending on the age of your kids. I think the fish observatory has lost its place and time...
... but our goal is to create more recreation opportunities." That's a deep spot of the creek there.
Joseph asking about parking qs
Walbert: It's based on the number of bedrooms only. There will have to be dif calculations for the tennis facilities, etc during site review (a later part of this process)
Joseph: "I'm kinda an expert on council on college students, in a way. I was commuting into Boulder and I did not want to pay parking. I think one way to disincentivize use of car is to charge more for parking for ppl living there."
Joseph recently graduated from CU law school. Used to live in the area and walk to class. "It only took 25 min and I walk v slow. Slow as a turtle."
"There's the creek path, but beyond that, there's not a lot of green spaces bc there's 28th St and Arapahoe. Using that parking space for more green space might be a best utilization of that space," Joseph says.
Folkerts: How did you arrive on the unit mix you're at now? And the total # of units?
Powell: There are open space requirements. 9.5 acres of a 15-acre site are required as open space.
Also, we have to elevate the building for flood protection, so we run up against height limits. But honestly the biggest thing are the parking requirements, Powell says. More units could be built.
Costas: We're severely constrained in footprint bc of the flood zone. We're v limited in the ability to change or expand the footprint of the building and still respect the height limits.
Yates adds to Speer's request that TAB review this development.
Rather them weigh in than us, Yates says, saying that council shouldn't call this up. Also maybe the Design Advisory Board.
TAB = Transportation Advisory Board, for the uninitiated.
Friend echoes that request. Asks for a formal Nod of Five to send this project to TAB.
Head of Planning (for now) Jacob Lindsey: TAB can't grant a further parking reduction, bc that's a regulatory issue. You can solicit their opinion, but if you don't call this up, it won't come back to you.
Powell: We have to go to TAB anyway, bc we're moving a multi-use path. We're hiring consultants for a parking study, so we plan on a rigorous process.
Brockett: "We've given this a pretty thorough working-over so far." Do we want to call this up?
Wallach seems to be the only one. Maybe-kinda.

My interest is only in getting input from TAB and DAB, he says. "If we can do that without calling it up, I'm fine."
Wallach Sigh-O-Meter: 1.35
Wallach: Are you going to be providing EV charging?
Yes, Powell says. That's required by code.
Brockett: Can we give direction that TAB/DAB weigh in at the most appropriate time?
Powell: We plan to be in site review for at least a year, so there's opportunity.
Speer asking that maybe a mental health professional or emergency responder living on-site rather than a cop. "I've heard our police chief say that one of the best ways to address behavior issues in these high-density, high-student areas is to have on-site property manager."
They're planning that, too, I believe.
Folkerts: "I think this site, I would support a heavy parking reduction here, especially if we can look at bike shares, car share, bike repair rooms... all those parts that can help make that easier for people."
Folkerts (who came from DAB): I do think the massing is pretty monotonous on a couple sides. It does, to me, feel like a good time to get some DAB feedback. I see some potentially bigger moves, and we can have that discussion earlier.
Winer: I used to say at the Millenium back in the day before I moved here. I'm excited about the amount of biking possible on the site. What's the plan for bike security? "It's hard for ppl to buy another bike."
Also echoes Folkerts design comments.
Powell: A significant portion of our bike parking will be inside, and it has to be locked. Guest parking is outside, but that has to be in well-lit spaces near the entrance. 75% inside to 25% outside
"We won't be looking for a bike-parking reduction," Powell says. Kids already have Eco-Passes as students, so we will be thinking about bike share, bike storage, etc.
"Idk where that dog gets to bark," Benjamin says, but "it just doesn't sit well with me" that we're requiring so much parking.
"Bring that dog to the retreat," Mayor Brockett says. "That's the place to talk about our rules and where they are working or not."
Adds his own thoughts: "Look at going further" on the parking reduction, "bc this is as good a site as it gets for walkability, bikeability, transit."
Council agrees to send this to TAB and DAB, and with that we're moving on.
@threadreaderapp please unroll. Thank you!
@threadreaderapp Actually, one more tweet: Council will NOT call this up at this stage, but again, are sending it to DAB, TAB. Planning Board, of course, reviewed it as well. And will do so again at later stages.

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More from @shayshinecastle

1 Dec
Getting an update on occupancy enforcement now. Will see if council still wants to suspend evictions, and if they'll do it now or when they start working on reform next year.
Refresher here. It's a bit confusing.
Read 78 tweets
1 Dec
Moving on: The public hearing on redevelopment of 2054 Spruce. Presentation: documents.bouldercolorado.gov/WebLink/DocVie…
Folkerts is recusing herself bc her office (she's an architect) "has a relationship with the developer."
I don't have a story on this, but I do have this guest opinion that basically says we should put more housing here. Appropriate to share, bc that's kinda what a majority of council asked for when they voted to call this up Sept. 28. boulderbeat.news/2021/11/28/opi…
Read 125 tweets
1 Dec
Next up: Budget adjustments. It's pretty boring, nothing that really stood out. See for yourself: documents.bouldercolorado.gov/WebLink/DocVie…
That presentation is way better than my own notes, but here they are anyway.

$18,495,924 total in appropriations to the 2021 budget.
This is all additional revenue and/or rollover.
So, like, if something was budgeted for but didn't actually happen, that $$ rolls over. It's called fund balance.

That's a way simple explanation, and there's more to it than that. But that's all I feel qualified to say.
Read 16 tweets
1 Dec
First up is approval of the 2021 election results. Only the council members who were *not* elected this year will OK them, as the central canvassing and election board.
If any members of council happen to be reading this, can you please ask why the # of active voters and ballots in the city is dif for the CC race vs. issues? Please and thanks!
Read 7 tweets
1 Dec
#Boulder! It's city council night! After a week off, I'm feeling refreshed and ready to GO.

Tonight we've got two public hearings:
- Budget adjustments
- Review (no vote) of plans to redevelop 2054 Spruce into 63 homes
Then a couple non-public hearing items, such as OKing the election results and an update on what council is doing / plans to do with occupancy limits and evictions.

Should be fun!
I know I've already posted a campaign ask, but I hear the key to good fundraising is to keep asking.

If you enjoy *not* attending city council meetings and instead reading my threads and/or recaps, please consider supporting Boulder Beat with some $$. boulderbeat.news/support-local-…
Read 6 tweets
17 Nov
Brief discussion on in-person vs. remote vs. hybrid council meetings.

So far not a fan of hybrid, bc I can't hear half the people.
Yates: I feel somewhat strongly that I don't want some council members are virtual and some in person.
Only caught about half of what he's saying bc the sound sucks.
Read 15 tweets

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