Noteworthy in the last few weeks has been the coverage of making Boulder a “brand.” It seems we are no longer a community of human beings but have morphed into a brand. To be sold, exploited, manipulated, monetized, etc., which is what happens when people market brands. The essence of our community is being sold by our leaders (Council, Planning Board et. al.) to the highest bidder, further driving up housing prices and adding to our 60,000+ in-commuters. There are already far more jobs in Boulder than work-age adults to work them, yet the alliance of developers, Chamber of Commerce, and City Council continue to floor the accelerator on growth via our brand. And, on the recreation side, attractions such as Chautauqua are turning into over-use nightmares. This should be alarming, and I hope Boulder residents realize what is happening as we change from a city to a brand. To paraphrase the British: “The city is dead, long live the brand.” So sad. And unrecoverable. Just drive down “Box” Canyon Boulevard west of 28th and see the towering results on either side of you. Again, so sad, so unrecoverable. Let’s stop being a brand and return to being a city of human beings.
There is no question that the cost of single-family housing has become a problem in Boulder. But it is not just a Boulder problem.
The Daily Camera reported (“Candidates interview for key spots,” March 15) that Councilman Aaron Brockett posed the following question to Planning Board applicants on Tuesday: “Should (development) be accelerated to address issues around housing, sustainability and transportation, or slowed so as not to exacerbate existing resource shortages and promote a shift away from the essential character of Boulder as a small city with low-rise buildings and zoning that in most spots calls for low density?
“In “theory,” this sounds like a fair question. But at its core, it’s a question based on totally false premises.
In January, a panel of visiting urban design and development experts published a report envisioning what the industrial zone around Arapahoe Avenue and 55th Street could look like under very different circumstances. The panelists, working for the Urban Land Institute and commissioned by the Boulder Chamber and the Boulder Area Realtors Association, devised a plan for a new “East Edge” of the city that felt like more of a “special place” than it currently does. Focusing on the 55th Street corridor from Arapahoe to Pearl Parkway, the advisory panel recommended introducing housing in several formats and at varied price levels. …
The panelists recommended exploring buildings above Boulder’s 55-foot height limit, and as high as 90 feet tall, as a way to accommodate extra office space and some of the up to 2,400 dwelling units they considered for the area.
How can Boulder balance maintaining open spaces with its need for affordable housing?
For more than a year, Boulder County residents and government have squared off over a 20-acre stretch of land northeast of town. Tucked between residential housing and Twin Lakes Open Space in the unincorporated town of Gunbarrel, the Boulder County Housing Authority proposed a change to the Boulder County Comprehensive Plan—which has been in place since the 1970s and acts as a blueprint for the city’s growth—to allow an affordable housing development on this land, about 12 units per acre or around 200 units total, thus incorporating the area into Boulder city limits.
Source: When It Comes to Housing, Boulder Can’t Have It All – 5280.com
As rising home prices, slow new home construction, and demographic shifts push homeownership rates to 50-year lows, the U.S. is increasingly a country of renters—and landlords.
Last year, 37 percent of homes sold were acquired by buyers who didn’t live in them, according to tax-assessment data compiled in a new report published by Attom Data Solutions and ClearCapital.com Inc.
Read more: Bloomberg.com