Thursday, December 22, 2005

Transit Village Update!

by Osman Parvez



Transit Village Update!
The City of Boulder has released a staff memo outlining Planning Board discussion of the Transit Village Area Plan land use concepts and options assessment outline, used during their public hearing on Dec 15th. As you may know, planners have released two concepts for public comment. The memo includes a summary of public input from Open Houses conducted this fall. Both concepts "reflect a new grid system of local connecting roads, bikeways, and pedestrian routes. In the hub area, a series of connecting public squares or plazas to serve transit users, residents, employees, and shoppers is anticipated. These public spaces could be connected via the Goose Creek multi-use path."

Concept 1
Residential use favored, including a minimum of 1,000 affordable housing units ( 20% of buildout), includes more "retail uses in all four quadrants, mid-box opportunities along 30th Street near Twenty Ninth Street, and one possible big box location at Pearl and Foothills. "Industrial uses would be more concentrated and parking spaces more constrained to encourage new public transportation infrastructure. According to the memo, "this concept would provide the best jobs to population ratio, at .5 to 1, based on an estimated 6,000 jobs and 11,000 new people."

Concept 2
Additional housing for seniors and employees, but more land preserved for future industrial uses than Concept 1. It includes an additional 2500 housing units (or approximately 5500 people), 8,000 future jobs are projected. The jobs to population ratio would be 1.5 to 1. Less mixed use development in this concept and more retail along the major corridors. Service commercial uses would be preserved along Valmont. Less parkland would be needed, and the ballfields would remain in their current location. A new park site would be identified in the area south of Walnut. More mixed use industrial would allow opportunities for certain service industrial uses to be co -located with residential uses.

Select Public Comments 
"Large format retailers will push/drive out of business the small locally-owned businesses. Small stores cannot compete with the large ones. (Ex; Wal-Mart)"

"I really like the direction of urban development in Boulder. Mixed use is great, nice work."

"What's needed? Connectivity to downtown! The transit village will become the new downtown and center of gravity in Boulder. Mass transit connection to downtown (free like Denver’s mall shuttles is important)."

Want to get involved? Attend Upcoming Public Meetings

2/9 - Planning Board
2/13 - Transportation Advisory Board
2/21 - City Council

Want to know more? Get a copy of our full research piece on Boulder Junction and FasTracks from our last 20 page research report. For a complimentary copy, please contact us. We'll email you a link for a downloadable (PDF) research report.

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