Item #3 – Ivywild Update – Jim Fennell and Mike Chaves
Jim Fennell, Fennell Architects, gave an update on the Ivywild School Project. He began by thanking CSURA for their involvement and support of the project. He then reported that the building had been well maintained by the previous owner, School District 11, with no asbestos found. There was some soil stabilizing required before the retaining wall could be constructed. He stated that Phase 1 should be substantially complete by the end of March 2013 per the contractor, Murphy Constructors. The greenhouse will hopefully be constructed between the end of Phase 1 and the beginning of Phase 2. In the mean time public gardens will be planted.
Commissioner Shonkwiler asked about the materials being used in the new construction on the North and South end of the building. Mr. Fennell stated that a combination of glass and corrugated steel siding is being used on both ends. Parking spaces were also discussed. Mr. Fennell pointed out where the on-site as well as off-site parking would be. He then reported that the occupancy for the building is at about 85% to date. He suggested that March would be a good time for CSURA members to tour the building.
Mike Chaves, City Engineering, gave an update on the proposed improvements within the Ivywild School Urban Renewal Area being done by the City. He began with showing where curb and gutter would be installed or replaced along with attached sidewalks and tree plantings on the south side of Navajo Street. There are also benches planned along Tejon Street which have been designed by Jim Fennell Architects. The north side of Navajo is too tight due to property lines being so close to the street to make many improvements. However, there are proposed solar street lights that are in the works. Due to the solar bulbs required for the lights there will need to be a private agreement for maintenance as the Colorado Springs Utilities maintenance does not cover solar.
Mr. Chaves went on to show the site and oval concept design of the round-about proposed for the intersection of Tejon, Cascade and Cheyenne Boulevard. The oval shape is designed for better traffic flow. He expects the design to be completed by summer of 2013 and construction to begin in the fall. It will take between 18-24 months to complete. The design is not complementary to pedestrians or bicyclists, however signage will be installed for safety.
Commissioner Shonkwiler excused himself from the meeting at 11:50 a.m.
Mr. Chaves stated that the center of the round-about median may include a sculpture, however, the City will do minimal landscaping. If a private organization adopts the median for maintenance and payment of additional water use then additional landscaping will be implemented. A representative from City Engineering will give an update on the project sometime during the summer months.
Commissioners asked if the work on Navajo and Tejon would be completed by the opening of the Ivywild School in March. Mr. Chaves stated that due to the holidays and other reasons the City’s portion of the project had been delayed. He did state that he would push to have the Navajo improvements completed as soon as possible.
Item #4 - CSURA Project Update Report – Jim Rees
Mr. Rees distributed the updated 2012 Impact Report and copies of the final ULI Advisory Services Panel Report centered on the downtown to Commissioners. He then reviewed the current Project Update Report. Per the request from Authority members a certified letter had been sent to Mr. Knowles, owner of the last warehouse site in the proposed arts district project under the Colorado Avenue Bridge. To date the return receipt for the letter had not been received. He further stated that there is interest in re-doing the Southwest Downtown Urban Renewal Plan. He will meet with Anne Ricker and Chuck Murphy to discuss the matter.
The Lane Center in the North Nevada Avenue project area is under construction. A property owner meeting is being planned to share the proposed North Nevada design guidelines for the area. There is some interest in raising the density in the project area.
An update on the CityGate project is scheduled for the February 27th meeting. Mr. Steve Engle, Griffis-Blessing, will make the presentation. The Copper Ridge redevelopment agreement is in the works. The key to getting the agreement completed will be a cooperation agreement between the City and the developer for use of sales tax.
Item #5 – Other Matters
Chairperson Wood-Ellis announced her intention to nominate Commission Neville for the position of chair at the February CSURA meeting. Members present supported that nomination and Commissioner Neville consented to accepting the nomination in February. Discussion for Vice Chair nomination led to asking Commissioner Raughton if he would be interested. He graciously declined due to other responsibilities. Commissioner Noyes then suggested Commission Wood-Ellis for vice chair.
The topic of staggering terms was discussed with a recommendation being made to the Mayor through CSURA legal counsel, Dan Hughes, for suggestions that would coincide with the requirements of the Colorado State Statutes on Urban Renewal terms.
Office space in the City Administration has opened up. Commissioner Raughton suggested that Commissioners take a look at the available spaces on the 6th floor in the area of the Economic Vitality office. There is a possibility of moving in during the month of February.
Item #6 - Adjournment
There being no further business to come before the Commissioners, motion was made by Commissioner Noyes, seconded by Commissioner Palermo to adjourn the meeting. Upon unanimous vote, the meeting was declared adjourned at 12:50 p.m.