Save DU Station
Transit Oriented Development at it’s worst… At only six months old half of this light rail station at the University Denver might be bulldozed.
It appears ridiculous, but Mile High Development is actually attempting to cram a 12 story high rise into this tiny wedge shaped piece of land adjacent to the University of Denver light rail station. This triangular corner, between Buchtel Boulevard and the tracks is no more than a few hundred feet long and much less than that in width. A high rise here would dominate the surrounding landscape, and completely alter the open-plaza space feel of the University of Denver Station, located across from the University of Denver.
An enormous building would be an incredible imposition on the train station and neighborhood. It would block all light coming in from the west, turning the station into a dark and gloomy locale, not to mention cold and icy in the winter.
I met with some residents picketing this small field and raising awareness about the project. Keep the bright atmosphere of the University of Denver Station. On April 30th a vote will be taken by city council on whether or not to allow construction to proceed. The transit agency of Denver, RTD, currently owns the property, and would be selling the land to them for profit.
Here’s further reading Eileen Abbattista of the Washington Park Profile.
An awkward, remnant wedge of land at the western edge of RTD’s University light rail station property – and the 11-story high-rise building proposed by Mile High Development for construction there – is at the heart of a currently escalating rezoning controversy.
Many neighbors strenuously object to obscuring the impact of the high-rise (which also seeks to add a top floor for resident parking on to the existing light rail station garage), by the City’s seemingly under-examined embracing of TOD at this specific location. Community Planning and Development staff and the City’s Planning Board have each expressed support for the rezoning application. If the zoning change is approved, CPD will only then review any proposals for future buildings and site improvements (including any by Mile High Development) as a matter of compliance with the new zone lot designation. No public input is allowed in that process.
Another sticky issue is that this parcel is owned by RTD, hence making it public land for all. Should this really be sold to a private developer? Many agree the land should remain public. Or at least be used for purposes directly related to transit. Here are additional negative factors by neighborhood resident Allan Ferguson:
Parking and traffic: This structure will dump 300-400 new residents and their cars onto the perimeter of a quiet residental area and into the midst of the already crowed DU area.
Aesthetics: People along the south side of the Buchtel corridor have worked long and hard to maintain the views to the north, and chose not to have sound walls along sunken interstate 25. A 12 story building would obliterate these views.
Safety: This building would cast a dark and dangerous shadow north over the light rail station and the highway. In winter, snow and ice would accumulate around the station, on the steps, and on the platform, posing serious dangers to transit riders.
Setback: Unlike the 10 story high rise a few blocks to the east, this building would have little or no setback from the sidewalk.
Even if you live outside of this district, or even the city, please forward a note, or forward this post to them and keep a tiny piece of open space intact. Or attend the public meeting at the City and County building, April 30th, 5:30pm.
Denver City Council site Reference council bill 149