P&Z supports delay in building of Meadows park | PostIndependent.com

P&Z supports delay in building of Meadows park

Developers of affordable housing at Glenwood Meadows won a recommendation Tuesday night that a park requirement be further delayed to help make the project possible.The city Planning and Zoning Commission unanimously agreed to postpone the time line for building the park, which developers say will cost $350,000. City Council last year already had agreed to one delay, giving developers 24 months to build the park. The commission’s recommendation will be considered Nov. 2 by council, which also is considering fee waivers and other concessions totaling more than $1 million.The city approved the 120-unit rental housing development late last year. However, developers say skyrocketing construction costs since then have driven up the project price tag by millions of dollars, requiring new city concessions to make it possible.They also have obtained a $1.5 million cash commitment from Garfield County to help in funding a development seen as meeting a critical housing need in the Glenwood area.Some of the units would be restricted to people making less than 40 percent of the median income in Garfield County, with others being limited to those making below 60 percent, and the rest set aside for those making below 80 percent.The one-acre park is required as part of the original annexation and development agreement for Glenwood Meadows, which includes both commercial and residential components. Developers eventually envision building a total of 300 apartments and also could build 175 single-family homes.Developers asked that the park requirement be delayed until the second phase of the apartment portion of the development is built because the first phase is heavily loaded with infrastructure costs that future phases won’t face.The developers, which include landowner Glenwood Meadows LLC, recently modified their delay request to offer to donate the parkland to the city if they fail to build the park by a certain date.City community development director Andrew McGregor generally supported that idea, but worried about the city possibly having to take on the $350,000 cost of developing the park. He recommended to P&Z that the proposal be modified so developers will have to providing bonding or other means of financial security to cover the cost the cost of the park construction, even if phase two is never built and the park falls into the city’s hands.Under the worst case scenario, residents of the first phase would have to wait five years for the park, plus the time construction would take.While agreeing to the delay, P&Z member Bruce Barth expressed frustration that Glenwood Meadows is such a massive development, “and yet they are at this point, ‘Well, oh, we can’t afford what we designed.'” He said developers should have had a contingency plan for rising construction costs.”I hope this is the end. I hope we don’t have to deal with this anymore,” he said.Contact Dennis Webb: 945-8515, ext. 16609dwebb@postindependent.com

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