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The North Broadway mixed-use neighborhood recently issued the following press release on an upcoming (May 2) hearing before the Town of Eagle’s Planning and Zoning Commission:
After nearly a year of planning and stakeholder outreach, the Town of Eagle’s Planning and Zoning Commission will have its first look May 2 at a potential new neighborhood that is proposed to be built just north of Broadway and along Grand Ave.
The North Broadway mixed-use neighborhood proposes a diversity of housing types, including a substantial number of affordable units, that is consistent with the future master plan land use designation of Riverside Mixed-Use (RMU) as outlined in the Town of Eagle’s 2015 Eagle River Corridor Plan (ERCP). The site is located along the hillside adjacent to the Eagle River and close to both downtown Eagle and the Eagle River Park.
“We have embraced the site’s unique challenges and opportunities to ensure an inviting gateway development for the Town of Eagle that will support pedestrian and trail connectivity goals; respect the adjacent watershed; deliver critical new workforce housing units; create active open space amenities; and promote economic vitality through thoughtful mixed-use design and density to define a true sense of place,” says Ryan Tobin, vice president of development for Nashville-based Elmington Capital Group Acquisitions LLC (ECG.) “We are very appreciative of Town of Eagle staff and community members providing ongoing guidance and valuable input.”
Tobin, who lives and works in Denver, brings both passion and expertise to enhancing communities by respecting character and delivering sustainability, having served in leadership roles with the Denver Housing Authority (DHA) for 16 years. Tobin is joined by Chris Spelke, Elmington’s director of development and also a former DHA leader.
The North Broadway concept plan is made possible with the coordination of three private parcels: The Johnson and Case (102 & 101 Ping Lane, respectively) properties are currently zoned Rural Residential; and the Steven Peters parcel at Brooks Lane (404 Brooks Lane) is zoned PUD Mobile Home Park. ECG currently has 404 Brooks Lane and 101 Ping Lane under contract and is working towards finalizing terms for development with the balance of owners. Owners and tenants of the current properties, including the mobile home properties, have been notified of the sale and will be extended options to remain in the new neighborhood long-term. (Currently, the individual owners of the mobile homes have a statutory option to pursue acquiring the site and preserving.)
“Our project is intended to deliver on the numerous goals of several master planning efforts that contemplate Eagle’s future while preserving the community’s unique character and history,” says Tobin. “The possibility of developing a new trail network, improving access to the river from downtown Eagle, and providing mixed-use, multi-residential and affordable housing make these linked parcels a one-of-a-kind development opportunity.”
The proposed preliminary subdivision plan will set the necessary framework for a phased development while celebrating the site’s natural features and location. From the hillside, there are excellent views to the north and west of the river and opposing hillside with good sun exposure from the south and west that will allow the orientation of buildings for passive and active solar energy. The lower portions of the site adjacent to the river are natural amenities that include a flood plain and wetlands that will be protected.
The plan also provides two points of access to ensure life-safety and fire truck access from both Brooks Lane and the proposed extension at Broadway and as outlined in the ERCP.
The new neighborhood is further designed consistent with ERCP guidance and will support higher density, more compact, walkable and connected areas. Higher density buildings located along the railroad tracks and at lower elevations will further advance this effort by ensuring visibility from Grand Ave., as the ERCP suggests.
The project is expected to seek inclusion into the Downtown Development Authority. Tobin says the North Broadway mixed-use neighborhood will stimulate investment, future growth and connectivity to river park recreation, dedicated park land and the historic downtown in a phased manner facilitated by public-private partnership.
The Eagle River bordering the site is the town’s greatest asset and creates the opportunity for access for both the residents of this development and the greater public.
“With our proposed project, we will also improve the eastern side of the Eagle River and provide broad community access via a future trail way in the 75-foot setback area along the river,” explains Tobin. “Walking and biking paths will also be added to allow for access to the eastern side of the Eagle River and connect to existing trail networks.”
An additional public-at grade crossing is being pursued to cross the railroad line off of Grand Ave. to support the master plan concepts of connectivity to both the river and Broadway. There are no planned dwelling units within 50 feet of the railway with the proposed roadway and landscaped buffer.
A preliminary traffic study of the site and surrounding roads concluded that the North Broadway neighborhood will be successfully incorporated into the existing and future roadway work. From the traffic study and Grand Avenue Corridor Study, there are several recommendations to the surrounding area, including adding a roundabout with two through lanes at 3rd Street and Grand Ave., and Broadway Street and Grand Ave. According to the corridor study, the intersection of Grand Ave. and Eby Creek Road is anticipated to be reconfigured with continuous approach both east and westbound that will convert the exiting westbound right lane to a shared through/right turn movement. Finally, the existing intersection at Ping Lane will be eliminated along the exiting corridor as a part of the Grand Ave. improvements.