Glenwood residents praise revised Bell Rippy development plan
Glenwood Springs residents responded positively Monday to redesign options for the Triumph-Bell Rippy apartment development presented during a Glenwood Springs Community Development meeting.
Glenwood Springs city staff and Triumph Development West, LLC, representatives hosted a digital conference earlier this week, providing the public with an opportunity to provide feedback about traffic mitigation options for the area nearby the proposed development.
The development proposal includes six three-story buildings with 38 one-bedroom units and 62 two-bedroom units adjacent to Palmer Avenue between 26th Street and Blake Avenue.
Triumph Principal and Chief Operating Officer Michael O’Connor presented several options for mitigating increased traffic loads as a result of the development. But it was a revised Bell Rippy site plan, which repurposed a portion of Palmer Avenue and added an option for green space, that was widely received by the public as the best option.
“We heard loud and clear about the traffic situation,” O’Connor said. “The neighborhood’s safety should not be significantly compromised (by the development).”
The redesign was offered in response to residents voicing opposition to the original Bell Rippy site plan during a Glenwood Springs Planning and Zoning Commission meeting May 26.
Dubbed Traffic Mitigation Option C: the redesign repurposes a portion of Palmer Avenue between 26th Street and Blake Avenue as a bicycle and pedestrian path.
The path would provide an avenue for utilities infrastructure and grant first responders access to the proposed development, but would otherwise restrict vehicle traffic.
The south end of Palmer Avenue would provide access to the proposed Bell Rippy parking lot areas and function as a regular street with sidewalks and gutters, O’Connor said.
“I was very pleased with the revised site plan,” said Trish Kramer, a Palmer Avenue resident. “We see the revised site plan as really helping with (neighborhood safety).”
Kramer spoke out May 26 against the development’s reduced parking requirements as a result of its proximity to the 27th Street RFTA bus station.
The original site plan called for 136 parking spaces, but 155 spaces were provided in the revised plan.
Kramer’s husband, Scott, also supported Option C.
“I think the new road configuration works well to address traffic flow,” he said.
Blake Avenue resident Matt Elliot said he supported Option C, but he would like to see elements from previous options including speed bumps on Blake Avenue and coupled one-way streets with Blake Avenue being a one-way south and Palmer being a one-way north.
“I’m right at the heart where everyone comes through,” Elliot said, explaining he frequently sees drivers speeding through a section of Blake Avenue designated as a 15 mph zone. “Even with Option C, we’ll have a ton of traffic coming from (Colorado) Highway 82. If you keep Blake (Avenue) a two way, it will just double traffic screaming through here at 25-30 mph.”
Several callers supported Elliot’s request for Option C to be coupled with speed-reducing measures including Glenwood City Council member Paula Stepp’s husband, Frank Martin.
With the public input gathered in the Community Development meeting, O’Connor said Triumph will further adjust the site plan before re-presenting it to planning and zoning commissioners June 23.
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There will be a northbound single-lane closure on Grand Avenue/Colorado Highway 82 at South Hyland Park Drive between 8 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. Wednesday and Thursday this week.