Susan Lambert: The stability of the four-body review process

The most important and time-tested component of American democracy is the concept of checks and balances. It ensures the interests of a few never override the values and interests of the larger community. It protects against corruption. It protects against tyranny.On June 13, Boulder City Council’s nine members met to contemplate eliminating Boulder County’s most important system of checks and balances: the BVCP’s four-body review process for land-use changes. Boulder’s four governing bodies are the county commissioners, county Planning Commission, City Council, and city Planning Board.

When the County Planning Commission (CPC) recently — and wisely — voted to maintain the existing density and reject Boulder County Housing Authority’s overreach at Twin Lakes, it sent shock waves through the halls of power in Boulder County — and the city. How dare this governing body listen to the people they serve? How dare they defy the back-door power plays of the county?

Read More: Susan Lambert: The stability of the four-body review process – Boulder Daily Camera

Bill Karelis: When a city dashes forward 

The implicit theory of growth behind Boulder’s current expansion is that it can become a fast-growing commercial center and retain its residential quality of life at the same time. That idea is proving to be a fantasy, along with many of the other visionary positions of our local government.Now the City Council has voted overwhelmingly to insert co-op housing in virtually any zoning district in the city and is pushing density through such bizarre ideas as “density transfer.” The inadvisability and destructive quality of this pro-density and anti-neighborhood position has been ably described in dozens of letters to the Daily Camera, as well as in editorials by Leonard May, Steve Pomerance, Spense Havlick and others.The indisputable fact is that the unaffordable housing problem is being driven by the push for commercial expansion. As one letter write wrote prior to the 2015 election, “You can’t build your way to affordable housing” — as has been demonstrated in San Francisco and Aspen. Boulder has fallen behind the wisdom of Palo Alto and other cities, which now understands this fallacy well. “Affordable” housing is really only more building, and not affordable at all. Indeed, much of the so-called affordable housing built in the city over the last two years opts out of the affordable housing requirement. Millions are being made, to a great extent by non-Boulder residents, by selling off beautiful downtown and neighborhood space.

Read More: Bill Karelis: When a city dashes forward – Boulder Daily Camera

No call-up: Boulder council grants final OK to 1440 Pine St.

The proposed development at 1440 Pine St. was given final approval on Tuesday night, as the Boulder City Council declined an opportunity to call up the project for further discussion.

That decline upholds a 6-1 vote of the city Planning Board last month to approve the project, which will see a three-story building built on a surface parking lot just northeast of the Pearl Street Mall.

No call-up: Boulder council grants final OK to 1440 Pine St. http://www.dailycamera.com/news/boulder/ci_31043717/no-call-up-boulder-council-grants-final-ok

Boulder Planning Board produces expected outcome: approves housing for homeless young adults at 1440 Pine St.

Boulder Planning Board produces the result they were expected to produce: they approved housing for young homeless adults at 1440 Pine St.

After 18 months of community debate — often unusually heated, even by Boulder’s standards — the city Planning Board on Tuesday night approved a proposal to build housing for homeless young adults in a new downtown facility.

The board voted 6-1, with member Crystal Gray representing the lone voice of dissent.

Read the Full Story at the Daily Camerahttp://www.dailycamera.com/news/boulder/ci_31025612/boulder-board-approves-housing-homeless-at-1440-pine

Steve Pomerance: ‘Density transfers’ at 1440 Pine – Boulder Daily Camera

Gentle Infill
Transferred Density

When I heard about the Attention Homes project at 1440 Pine, now under review by the Planning Board, something about the large size and high number of at-risk young adults that would be housed there didn’t ring true to me. Then I learned that this was the result of a “density transfer.” I couldn’t remember ever hearing that term in my 10 years on the City Council, so I inquired as to what was being proposed. What I learned was, frankly, pretty bizarre.

Source: Steve Pomerance: ‘Density transfers’ at 1440 Pine – Boulder Daily Camera