Urges Attendance At Planning Commission Meeting
Citizens of Estes Park,
If you did not attend the Jan 20th or the Feb 17th Planning Commission meetings you missed two examples of our local government at its best. The Planning Commission considered revisions to the Estes Valley Development Code regarding Additional Dwelling Units (ADUs) and the protection of wildlife and habitat. They heard presentations by the Planning Staff, comments from the public (both pro and con), questioned the Town Attorney, discussed each paragraph of the proposals in detail, and then provided Staff with clear and concise direction for the next drafts. The process provided for long meetings but was, in each case, an example of how good our government can really be!
What has become apparent is the proposed revision to Wildlife & Habitat Protection, Section 7.8, of the code is:
1) the code needs explicit language allowing the Planning Commission the authority to deny an application. This is a major flaw in the existing code and is the motivation for doing this revision.
2) there is no language in this proposal stating that a mitigation plan must be effective. A major problem uncovered by Wapiti Crossing.
3) it is understood that any development has an impact, however the goal is to have no “significant adverse impact” in those few areas identified as critical.
Without providing clear and specific language, the new code will not correct the problems which caused the Wapiti Crossing Condominium development proposal to be such a troublesome and divisive issue for the citizens of Estes Park, the developer, the Planning Commission and the Town Board.
Both topics, ADUs and the Wildlife & Habitat Protection code changes will be reviewed at the next Planning Commission meeting scheduled for March 17. Your comments provide our Town officials with information they need to govern responsibly. If either of these issues is important to you, please consider the following actions:
1). Read and understand these proposals. They can be found on the Town’s website www.estesnet.com/comdev/EVDCChanges.aspx. or pick up a copy at the Planning Department in Town Hall.2). Provide your comments and opinions to our Town government. Emails may be sent to Karen Thompson, Community Development Department Secretary, firstname.lastname@example.org or Jackie Williamson, Town Clerk, email@example.com. Letters can be mailed to: Jackie Williamson
170 MacGregor Avenue
P.O. Box 1200
Estes Park, CO 80517
3). Plan to attend the next Planning Commission meeting March 17, 2008 to express your opinion and support our Planning Commission.
Please note: On March 10, 4:30 p.m., a joint Study Session between the Board of Trustees and the Planning Commission will be held to discuss the topics of ADUs, the Wildlife & Habitat Protection section of the Estes Valley Development Code, and an Open Space Study (and Plan). The meeting will be upstairs in Town Hall and although the public cannot speak during the session it is vitally important for all who are interested in these topics to attend the meeting and learn how our government views future development in the Estes Valley.
Fred R. Mares