Those who have been following the challenge of intrusive development in historic zones should not be surprised to learn that the problem is not confined to Armory Park. Our neighbors to the west in Barrio Historico are having the same sort of problem with a townhouse development. Their historic board has published the following pamphlet seeking support for their effort to fight the development. Since many in our neighborhood have had difficulty viewing the pamphlet, I am reproducing it here. The print is small but I hope you can read it.
So I can move to a more positive note, I’ll begin this piece with the bad news. Perhaps the worst is that before this hearing and as it progressed, I had the feeling that this rezoning is a done deal. There are several steps ahead but it is hard not to feel that the outcome is already determined.
Immediately after the normal opening routine, the regular April Historic Advisory Board meeting took a dramatic turn. Board Chair Martha McClements read into the record a written complaint sent to city government by Brian Kassel regarding John Burr. He claimed that John was biased against him because of some unexplained animosity. She further read her reaction to the complaint stating that she had great respect for John’s knowledge and integrity and intended to take no action on the complaint. John stated that he would not vote on Brian’s project but would participate in discussions as he deemed appropriate. There was further discussion from the board which supported the Chair’s decision. Remarks by Brian did nothing to clarify the situation but his perception may have been influenced by John’s attempts to point out some issues which may cause problems for the project if not addressed until a later date.
The most important subject for the meeting was the Baffert Project at 6th Avenue and 18th Street. Both APNA and APHZAB (historic board) have sent letters to the zoning examiner for entry into the record of the hearing to happen at the Mayor & Councilchambers Thursday (12 April) at 6:00 PM. Both boards will also make presentation of their concerns at the hearing. Neither board is pleased with the proposed building height of 48 feet, much taller than any structure nearby. However, the most important issue is retaining the property in the historic zone so that the APHZAB will have some voice in how the project proceeds and to avoid a newprecedent which could destroy our Historic Preservation Zone and others. The board asked for maximum resident attendance at the hearing to show that the community was very concerned about developments. There was consensus that if this rezoning is approved, there will be a succession of such actions going north along 6th Avenue (Wanslee Motors, Philbaum Gallery, Roy’s Market and more). Imagine what 6th Avenue will look like lined with buildings 48 feet tall or taller. The most public face of Armory Park will be disfigured and the western part isolated from the rest. Continue reading “Baffert Headlines APNA Agenda”
Both our neighborhood association and our historic board are actively engaged with the city and developer regarding the proposed Baffert project. I published my views on the subject a few days ago. Since then, the APHZAB has submitted the following letter to the zoning examiner to be entered into the record of the rezoning case. I am not optimistic that neighborhood opposition to the project’s shortcomings will prevail over the economic and political pressure, however, if we do nothing, a bad outcome is certain. Both of our neighborhood organizations are working hard to defend our community’s historic character and they need your visible support.
The hearing will be held on April 12, 2018 at 6:00 PM in Mayor and Council Chambers, first floor, east side of City Hall, If you care about preserving the historic character of Armory Park, you should attend.
Note: This hearing has been postponed to May 3rd at the same time and place.
Most involved members of our Armory Park community are already aware of the proposal to construct a new commercial and residential building on the northeast
corner of 6th Avenue and 18th Street. The project periodically becomes subject of discussion and then fades to the background for long periods. Now is a good time to be paying attention to developments. Continue reading “Baffert Controversy”
It has been some time since I have posted an article because I have been busy with some exciting things related to historic preservation in Armory Park. I’ve made it clear on these pages that preserving our neighborhood’s historic character has a high priority for me. Continue reading “Historic Preservation Activities”
The 19 December APHZAB meeting had no projects to consider however there was other business conducted.
Michael Taku, Lead Planner at PDSD made some comments and handed out a copy of a portion of the Uniform Development Code from which I extracted the following. If you are considering any project in Armory Park you should review the process described in the code. Otherwise you may want to move past this. Continue reading “APHZAB Elections & Design Review Process”
I strongly urge you to attend the Baffert meeting (Monday 12/18, Armory Park Center, 6 PM) if at all possible. Your views are important. Bill Duffy, APHZAB Chair, passed some important contacts via our listserv, quoted here in italics: Continue reading “Important Contacts”
Yesterday, I wrote about the APNA board meeting where the propose Baffert project and removal of the property from our HPZ was extensively discussed. I want to follow up on the subject.
Bill Duffy, Chair of our historic board (APHZAB), recently posted an excellent email to our listserv on the subject. Most of it is quoted here: Continue reading “Save Your Historic Neighborhood”