ANB Bank gets approval to build new bank in downtown Glenwood Springs
The Glenwood Springs Planning and Zoning Commission, in a unanimous vote Tuesday night, approved ANB Bank’s proposal to move into the 900 block of Grand Avenue downtown.
ANB Bank purchased the properties at 910 and 918 Grand Avenue with the intent of demolishing two circa-1915 buildings in order to construct a 9,706 square foot, two-story bank and office building.
ANB Bank already submitted a design proposal in July, which the planning and zoning commission unanimously denied.
At the time, commissioners did not believe ANB Bank’s proposal promoted a cohesive visual identity or created a high-quality pedestrian environment.
Additionally, commissioners took issue with the building’s primary entrance not facing Grand Avenue.
The Glenwood Springs City Council then upheld the planning and zoning commission’s findings in September, after ANB Bank appealed that decision.
Tuesday night, ANB Bank submitted a new building design, which commissioners believed satisfied the city’s development code with an entranceway facing Grand Avenue and building materials resembling Red Mountain’s color.
“I struggle with the use but that’s not my job to make a decision on,” Marco Dehm, Planning and Zoning commission chairman, said. “This is a use by right and we are here to look at the design.”
The seven tenants moving out or already moved out of the buildings that ANB Bank will later demolish include KC’s Winghouse, Tesseract Comics & Games, Jewels & Gems, Bellini’s Fashion, CPA Services Pro, Inc., Glenwood Spa N Nails and the Glenwood Escape Room.
A few of those tenants have already relocated and the remaining ones have until May 31, 2020 to vacate the premise.
In its new facility, ANB Bank plans to occupy the bottom floor and rent out the second story.
“We offered all tenants one full year of free rent, free utilities, full security deposit refunds and the opportunity to remove any and all improvements that they may have contributed to the property,” Randy Diers, ANB Bank community bank president for Glenwood Springs, said. “We have given material consideration to the affected tenants that probably no one else would have.”
One of those tenants was Jewels & Gems Owner Cheryl Guay.
“I’m one of the business owners that has to get out,” Guay said. “I’m thinking about moving to Carbondale because there isn’t anything left in Glenwood I don’t believe.”
Guay has done business in downtown Glenwood Springs for 35 years, with the last 25 being in the building ANB Bank will demolish.
Laura Speck, who owns The Silver Bead across Grand Avenue from Jewels and Gems also spoke out against ANB Bank’s proposal.
“This is jeopardizing so many people’s reputations and livelihoods in this downtown,” Speck said. “This is devastating our community.”
Ultimately, commissioners Dehm, Tim Malloy, Sumner Schachter, Amber Wissing and alternate Dean Kinkel supported the motion to approve ANB Bank’s proposal.
Additionally, a few audience members spoke in favor of ANB Bank’s relocation to the downtown core including former Glenwood Springs Chamber CEO Marianne Virgili.
“We live in this wonderful country where when you buy a piece of property that’s zoned for a specific use, you can develop it for that use,” Virgili said. “I do stand by use by right.”
The planning and zoning commission is the final decision-making body concerning ANB Bank’s proposal.
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Several Carbondale businesses are scrambling to relocate and others are just plain calling it quits following plans for one of the town’s oldest strip malls to be redeveloped.