Letter: Unwise development
We need affordable housing in Glenwood Springs for our hard-working locals. We need urban smart growth. The proposed development at 2225 Midland is not what Glenwood Springs needs in order to accomplish this.
The price tag that Mr. Helm is quoting for an affordable 450 square foot studio unit is $1,000. Our daughter is a teacher here in Glenwood, and her take home pay is $2,300 a month — $1,000 represents 43 percent of her take-home pay. “Affordable” housing expenses should be 25-30 percent of take-home. This is not affordable housing.
Smart urban growth provides people easy access (bike and walk) to transit, shopping, entertainment and outdoor activities. Again, the proposed 71 unit (103 bedrooms), four-story structure is not a smart place for a dense development. There are no sidewalks or bike lanes that would be accessible on that side of Midland.
Distance to mass transit facilities and any shopping areas for most people will require a vehicle. With 71 units, and a maximum of two people per unit, there could be 142 vehicles utilizing the apartment building parking. This will put more people on the already congested, dysfunctional Midland Avenue.
There is one entrance/exit point. This seems like a painful way to start and end your day getting out of and into one parking lot. While there are two outdoor park areas, there are no common areas located within the structure, people will need to leave their small units to have social interaction (unless hanging out in your tiny space is appealing). This means people will be driving not only for work, but any extracurricular activity.
There is only one proposed laundry room for the entire 71 units. Again, another reason to get on the road. This structure is better suited for a property within walking distance of buses, shopping, recreation and employment opportunities.
I understand that a developer needs to make a profit. Would Mr. Helm be able to make enough profit developing five or six single-family homes with small ADUs for local affordable housing that would be more in line with the context of the neighborhood?
Once concrete is poured and asphalt laid, the integrity of a neighborhood has been forever altered — for better or for worse. We need to think through and plan for smart, long-term growth that utilizes our resources efficiently and effectively for the good of the collective whole.
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