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Louisville Redtail Ridge Pros and Cons

Published on 4/5/2022

City of Louisville, Colorado
Special Election – April 19, 2022

Pros and Cons

The League of Women Voters is not responsible for the
accuracy or fairness of the arguments of either side.

City of Louisville Ballot Question

Shall Louisville Ordinance No. 1811, Series 2021, An Ordinance Approving the First Amendment to Conoco Phillips Campus General Development Plan (Redtail Ridge Master Plan), be approved?

• Due to the filing of a referendum petition, Ordinance No. 1811 did not become effective. Therefore, it is up to the voters to approve or deny Ordinance No. 1811 at the special election.


• A yes vote means you want to approve the amendment to the General Development Plan
    (GDP) as requested by the applicant.

• A no vote means you want to deny the amendment to the General Development Plan (GDP).

Background

In September 2021, Louisville City Council, with a 4-3 vote, passed Ordinance No. 1811 which approves the first amendment to the GDP for the former ConocoPhillips property— the Redtail Ridge GDP. The property owner/ applicant is Brue Baukol Capital Partners LLC, a private equity firm in Denver specializing in real estate investment. Years ago, this property was the StorageTek campus.

A group of residents gathered sufficient signatures on a referendum petition to require City Council to either deny Ordinance No. 1811, the Redtail Ridge GDP, or refer it to Louisville voters.  So, the ordinance has not gone into effect. The voters will approve or deny the ordinance at the special election on April 19.

Two campaign committees have registered with the City:

Yes for Louisville supports the ordinance.

Citizens for a Vibrant, Sustainable Louisville opposes the ordinance. 

 

 
Map 811 Lvlle Redtail Ridge


Major Provisions

Ordinance No. 1811, which amends the 2010 GDP for the property, is available online here. Under the ordinance:

- the zoning changes from Commercial to Commercial/Industrial (Commercial includes Office) and the scale of development increases;

- changes are made to the 2010 GDP regarding parcel layout, design requirements, the transportation network, public land dedications, building area, and sustainability requirements;

- the number of categories of expressly allowed use increases from 13 to 33, including schools, private recreational clubs, supermarkets, department stores, restaurants, and a variety of manufacturing and processing facilities (see the Permitted Uses table in the Ordinance);

- building heights above three stories are allowed if buildings are clustered to preserve undeveloped land.


Those IN FAVOR say

Redtail Ridge (RTR) requires the developer to build to the highest environmental standards in Colorado, including 3+ megawatts of solar required on site, and commercial buildings required to meet LEED certification standards.

The RTR plan includes 93 acres of new, permanent open space, parks, trails, and public safety.

The plan allows for a new, modern hospital facility with premium access to U.S. 36 and RTD. Avista Hospital is interested in moving its campus to Redtail Ridge.

The RTR plan extends Campus Drive from Monarch campuses to 96thStreet, and it makes this possible by 2023.

While the currently vacant site provides only $15,000 in property-tax revenue per year, the RTR plan at full buildout could increase that figure to $25 million.

The 2021 RTR GDP is much better than the 2010 Conoco GDP, which allows for development of 2.56 million square feet but lacks the open space and sustainability components of the 2021 plan. If voters reject the 2021 plan, development will proceed under the 2010 GDP.


Those OPPOSED say

• Redtail Ridge (RTR) is a massive, sprawling development, allowing 3 million square feet of industrial and commercial space, enormous parking lots and 5-story buildings in a town with no buildings over 3 stories.

• Projected fiscal benefits are outweighed by unfunded infrastructure costs and do not compensate for loss of small town character and significantly worsened traffic.

• Three city council members voted against the plan because it does not meet Comprehensive Plan policies or city code, primarily because of maximized size, unmitigated traffic, and undetermined economic impact. RTR will compete with currently empty commercial space and/or cannibalize existing businesses.

• The RTR plan includes meager open space, less than previous major developments in Louisville. The development footprint is nearly edge-to-edge, leaving no wildlife corridors or buffer between Louisville and Broomfield.

• Contrary to advertisements, denial of this plan allows the developer to submit a better one. If they wish to submit a subdivision plat according to the 2010 ConocoPhillips GDP, they will need to forego industrial development and limit the development size, thereby decreasing traffic and protecting habitat. Campus Drive extension will still be required, and a hospital is an allowed use under either plan’s commercial zoning.

• Louisville can and must do better. If voters reject the Redtail Ridge plan, any replacement, including the default ConocoPhillips GDP, will require Council oversight, a public review process, and multiple Council votes, resulting in a better plan in line with our values and small town character.

To print a copy of this document, click below: 

2022 Louisville Redtail Ridge Issue


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