Item No. 2 - Major Subdivision at 5725-5785 W. 38th Avenue

Case: WS-21-03
The applicant is requesting approval of a major subdivision in the Mixed Use - Neighborhood (MU-N) zone district that would create 26 townhome lots and 2 tracts. The request will allow the townhomes (which are allowed by the MU-N zoning) to be sold separately and will prepare the site for development.
This is a recording of the September 13, 2021 City Council meetingĀ 

Videos

Applicant Presentation

Staff Presentation

Files

Item No. 2 ( 5.51 MB )
Staff Report and Proposed Subdivision ( 5.05 MB )
Vicinity Map ( 1.01 MB )
Subdivision Review Standards
Approval of subdivisions are ministerial actions and have no discretionary review criteria. Subdivisions are required to comply with the underlying zoning and with the subdivision regulations in Chapter 26, Article IV. An analysis of the subdivision is provided in the staff report linked above.

Comments & Feedback

Comments
 
This case is closed, online commenting is no longer available.
Online comments closed at 12:00 PM MDT 9/13/21.
My initial reaction to the proposed development on 38th and Eaton St. was Absolutely Not, knowing the huge impact it will have on the people living on Eaton St. I changed my thinking somewhat after looking on Storybuilt's website and seeing their plans of 21-23 townhomes and accepting this as another one of our "new normals". The design looked very appealing and the area being developed could use a little revitalization and new life. The new plans are for 26 townhomes, packing as many onto the site as possible and having 4 of the townhomes up close and personal (too personal...) to our property and two of our neighbors to the south. My backyard is my sanctuary. I treasure the privacy I have out there. I also get great pleasure from all the creatures that come through there as well. Unfortuntely, development has run amok with no consideration for what was once there or on how it impacts the neighborhood. This will greatly impact me personally, losing all of my privacy (probably most of the animals that come visit too). Upon seeing that the plans show the trash receptacles being placed on tract b in the n.e. corner of the development (butting up to our backyard and our neighbors to the south) I feel like that as almost a slap in our face in regards to being a "good neighbor" in the design development. To the developers, you are welcome to spend some time with me in my backyard to get my perspective on how your development will change everything.
September 13, 2021, 11:28 AM
Nicki Conway
We are not opposed to development of this corner however this development is too dense, and is not at all in keeping with the Eaton St. neighborhood. Currently from 41st street to 38th there are 27 single family homes on Eaton. This proposal doubles the density on the block and crams the homes onto 1.25 acres. I attended the planning meeting via zoom and was surprised to learn that at some point in Wheat Ridges history a statute was approved that allows 21 homes to an acre. I have no idea what the spirit of that statute was or why it was ever approved, but just because statute allows it doesn't mean it should be approved. This design also has an exit onto Eaton street. The traffic on Eaton street will more than double, however, City planning staff said something to the effect "they had a study done once and they didn't see the need for another one". I have no idea when this study was done, I assume it was when a previous developer sued our neighborhood, however, common sense says, today there is virtually no traffic coming in and out onto Eaton st. (maybe 1 or 2 cars a day) after this development there will be a massive amount of traffic coming out onto Eaton. To imply that there will be no change to traffic on our quiet street is simply not true. This development should be reconfigured to provide for both the entrance and the exit to be on 38th. The planning commission did ask the City planners if this was possible, and the City planners reply was something like "it would be possible but it would be very difficult". I can tell you it will be way more difficult on the current neighborhood if that exit is allowed to stay on Eaton st. If it is allowed to stay then it must be a right turn only exit and that right turn must be enforced to keep the traffic off of Eaton. Eaton is a very narrow street with no curbs or gutters, since school as started we have buses travel Eaton st. twice a day. Recently the bus had to stop and wait for someone to come move their car because it could not get through. This is concerning for the health and safety of the Eaton street residences. It sounds like the planning staff had fire and police look at the development itself to make sure that it could access those 26 homes, however, I don't think they evaluated what will happen when those residence start parking up and down Eaton on both sides of the street. If a school bus could not get through then firetrucks and ambulances will not be able to get through. Prior to the sale of the properties in question I hosted a neighborhood meeting with a developer who indicated they were proposing to build 14 row homes on this property. I mistakenly thought that developer was this current developer, storybuilt. Well sadly this developer storybuilt has never even reached out to anyone who lives on Eaton street. Again, common sense, common courtesy and just trying to be a good neighbor, you would think this developer would have reached out. To not even reach out it is clear they don't care. They don't care about our opinions, the impact on our neighborhood and/or what this will do to Wheat Ridge. This developer is based in Austin and has never built a development in CO. We have no idea or examples of the quality of their work. We have no idea of the relationships or contacts they have with the local people they will have to sub to get this job done. They have employed some people in CO, I think the person who presented lives out North. So really no one with this developer has any idea or commitment to the character, culture or deep sense of community that Wheat Ridge is so well known for. The only somewhat close neighbors they spoke to was the Incarnation development. That conversation was about the alley/walkway running from Incarnation towards 38th. That walkway is not kept up, there is broken lighting, weeds and it runs next to business's that have boarded doors with spray painted "blocked doorway" signs. The developer is using this walk way as a selling tool to promote the developments "walkability". My guess is there will be so much traffic going in and out of this cramped development that walking or riding a bike through or around the development will be dangerous, especially for children and pets. While listening to the comments of the planning commission it sounds as if they only approved this development because they felt they were backed into a corner and had no choice because City Planning staff said it meets all City requirements. I am pleading with City Council to take a deeper look. Push back on the density, dig into what the "spirit of the law" was when 21 homes to an acre was written (this developer could easily cut down on the number of units and reconfigure the entrance and exit.) Despite what the planning department staff says the traffic increase on Eaton street will be dramatic and dangerous. Fire and Police have to get re-engaged and assess what the impact to Eaton street will be in an emergency situation. Someone from the City must look at the width of Eaton street, it seems more narrow than surrounding blocks so parking will absolutely be a huge issue. It is imperative that City Council deep dive this situation before approving. I believe the density alone should be reason enough for a formal protest. Thank you for reading, listening and acting on behalf of your citizens.
September 12, 2021, 9:59 PM
Susan R. Hartley
I believe the Storybuilt proposal is in line with the City's declared efforts to revitalize 38th Avenue into a "Main Street" feel and more appealing place. That well-publicized goal was actually one reason we moved here six years ago. Freshening up the avenue's landscape, taming it as a raceway, and encouraging new growth in that corridor can make it more welcoming to pedestrians and families and foster local restaurants and businesses. Many younger people are attracted to more contemporary notions of home and housing type than was my generation. Good-quality design and oversight can bring fresh blood into a community without damaging the appeal of the older community, as has happened on certain blocks of Tennyson Street. I live nearby the construction site, and support the proposal. However, I do not border it. Homeowners, especially those who live next to the property or nearly so, have legitimate questions and concerns about traffic congestion on Eaton Street and other issues that deserve to be heard, and hopefully mitigated. As an aside, I would ask the Council consider a pedestrian crosswalk at Fenton Street where the property is located across 38th Avenue. This would make walking between Panorama and Randall parks much less nerve wracking across 38th. Thank you.
September 12, 2021, 11:12 AM
Thad Keyes
Water. Water. Water. How is increasing density here and its subsequent demand for water protecting the health & well-being of your citizens as you were elected to do? Developing beyond our resources in Jeffco is reckless and short-sighted. There are reasons many out of state developers and investors would like to further build in the area, but what level of human intelligence locally allows development denser than the land and resources can support. There ARE places in Colorado and elsewhere that would love this development and have the resources to support it. It is time developers started looking to those places vs destroying existing, built-out areas. Thank you for your consideration and taking the time to individually research for yourselves the water supply issue for this county.
September 10, 2021, 11:41 AM
Rev Imara
We are 30 year Wheat Ridge residents and live within a few hundred feet of this proposed major new development with a clear view from our kitchen window. We have several concerns we would like addressed and hear about mitigation plans. 1. Increased traffic congestion 2. Population density 3. Noise from people, pets, traffic, heating and cooling machinery and trash collection 4. Obscured sightlines 5. Mature tree removal 6. Pedestrian safety and ease of movement crossing the street 7. Environmental impacts
September 8, 2021, 7:53 AM
Douglas Jacobson
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