Charles Nadler and Ean Tafoya, the 2 new co-chairs of the Inter-Neighborhood Cooperation Zoning and Planning Committee, convened the meeting. New INC President George Mayl (due to former President J.J. Niemann’s resignation), who will serve until the INC elections in March 2018, welcomed them.
The following topics were discussed:
- Ean Tafoya updated the committee on the status of the various Denveright planning efforts and encouraged all Registered Neighborhood Organizations to participate. Detailed information can be found at www.denveright.org.
- Erik Solivan, the director of the city’s Office of HOPE (Housing Opportunities for People Everywhere) explained the almost-finished five-year Comprehensive Housing Plan to the committee. In 2016, a Housing Advisory Committee, which is the author of the plan, and an Affordable Housing Fund were established by ordinance. The fund, which replaces the money raised by the former inclusionary housing ordinance, is expected to raise approximately $15 million per year. The city is also looking for financial help from foundations and major employers. The city of Denver’s population, currently 700,000, grew 27% since 2000. The term “affordable housing” is meant to cover a wide area of the housing market, from no income to 80% of the average median income. The fundamental values of the plan are:
- Leverage and enhance housing investments to support inclusive communities
- Identify ways to foster communities of opportunity
- Housing as a continuum that serves residents across a range of incomes
- Embrace neighborhood diversity
- Stabilize residents at risk of involuntary displacement/gentrification
More on Denver housing issues can be found at www.denvergov.org/housing.
One committee member urged the HAC to address issues of bad management and maintenance of some lower-income housing.
- The co-chairs thought that the committee could learn from examples shared by committee members of accomplishments in their neighborhoods. Charles Nadler discussed the bureaucratic difficulties in moving an RTD bus stop from a dangerous traffic location at 15th and Larimer to a nearby corner, which involved numerous meetings with RTD, Denver Public Works traffic engineers and City Council. Ean Tafoya talked about Denver Days in the City Park West neighborhood.
- At the committee chairs’ suggestion, members of the committee urged that the ZAP Committee to spend time and energy during 2018 on the following ideas, perhaps at committee meetings or in special workshops or academies:
- Study ideas for design review of new structures.
- Learn about city’s group-home and shelter spacing ordinance, including the expiration in March 2018 of a moratorium on new community correction facilities. Some City Council members are talking about changing the spacing ordinance.
- Learn about accessory dwelling units and where they are allowed.
- Update the INC Planning and Zoning Platform (2013) and report on what items have been implemented.
- General discussion about enforcement of city regulations – is it adequate; how to get enforcement?
- Develop an INC Liquor and Marijuana Platform.
- Learn about the stormwater master plan for all parts of the city
- Learn about emergency planning in Denver
- Learn about regional planning by the Denver Regional Council of Governments and how it affects Denver neighborhoods
- Formalize operational rules for the ZAP committee – who can vote; do motions need to be presented in writing; do motions need to be circulated before committee meetings?