General Meeting Minutes – February 2014

University Park Community Council General Meeting
Wednesday, February 5th, 2014 7pm

Thank You to University Park United Methodist Church for providing refreshments.

6:30 – 7 pm — Social Time with Neighbors – time to talk with UPCC board members about volunteer opportunities and neighborhood questions. About 60 people were in attendance.

Welcome from the UPCC President, Jennifer Schmidt.

Will Jones from University of Denver gave a few updates.700-501
He introduced Ben Gerig, a new employee and assistant working directly with Will. There will be a 150-year celebration this year; some bookmarks will be left behind on the sign in table to take with you for more information. The next DU Good Neighbors meeting is from 6-8pm on February 19th. Also, on April 1st, Iliff/York will 642-374 certification start the ground breaking for a new building. They are hoping to keep parking issues at a minimum.

Owen Perkins and Aaron Silverstein are present tonight and running for the House District 2 position.

Dr. Stencel briefed the attendees on the Observatory Future. His mission was to try to improve the observatory, built in 1888. Dr. Stencel started in the 90’s, helped with the repairs along side with the UPCC and the astronomical society.  He has been volunteering his time and plans to being to develop a fund to help keep the Observatory open, maintained, and properly staffed after his retirement.  DU will be offering some compensation to keep it staffed, but more donations will be needed. There have been almost to 250,000 visitors to the Observatory during its lifetime. There is an open house this Saturday. Dr. Stencel is also a recent recipient of the Gold Star award from INC.

ZONING 101 – a basic primer.

Presented by: Tina Axelrad, Principal City Planner, Pat Cashen, UPCC Zoning Chair, and Rosemary Stoffel UPCC’s Small Area Plan Chair and Zoning Code Update Co-Chair

Tina discussed that it took 5 years to develop the current updated zoning plan. Adopted in 2010, it was the 1st overhaul since 1956. Long range plans helped to decide land use, transportation, and development. Blue Print Denver adopted in 2012, and the 2008 University Park small area plan all become a roadmap to zoning. Within the 13 council districts they had many meetings, including public knowledge and insight. Tina also used a map to show areas of UPark’s specific zoning. For instance, our housing lot size is a min of 6000sq ft. for our neighborhood. Our outskirt streets also have a specific zone to grow and develop with time while keeping to the UPark small area plan. Some older buildings were able keep larger zoning sizes due to grandfathering. The majority of the plan was to make properties closer to transit to allow for larger buildings and they would have more transportation availability. Colorado Blvd. also has a different zoning than University Blvd. allowing for a larger street and more on site parking. They will take rezoning applications seriously, however they have to decide how close to the original plan it is.

Pat – Discussed site-specific zoning. Last fall during the meeting, the 2400 block of University Blvd. came up for discussion.  The developers wanted to take the current zone of GMX3 and asked for a change to GRX5.  He discussed the difference between the current and the request. An application to rezone this site is available at and is also on line on at the site as well. On Feb 20th at 6:30 in the district 3 police station’s community room the developers will present some designs for those interested. An opportunity to listen to the planning board is on March 5th at 3:00pm at the Wellington Webb Building. Anyone can write, call, or email questions, concerns or comments – the board has email address of for ease, and also Denver has a whole zoning page on their website with people to contact.

Rosemary – Who helped with the University Park small area plan development in 2008, passing out a synopsis of Tina’s discussion. Rosemary talked about her involvement and participation in this process and the general vision of the neighborhood. She worked with 4 different city planners and many residents, and on a committee of 13 people. City planning unanimously approved the small area plan. A copy of the plan is also on Denver’s website. She was also part of the zoning code update in 2009, and 9 people formed that group. Many meetings, notices, and recommendations later then emerged the zoning map that Tina was using.

Diana – On February 8th from 9am -11:30am the INC will be meeting at the Heritage Club. They will have a panel discussion about how marijuana affects our neighborhood. And Produce 4 Pantries, which brings food to the food-banks, will be in our neighborhood.

Adjourn by 8:15pm per University Park School’s request