Support Change: Say YES To A Walkable 15-Minute Neighborhood In Your Community

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Convenient retail, quality community-oriented open space and access to transit are all features that support the concept of a “Walkable 15-Minute Neighborhood.”

Iris&B is a residential development located at 3303 Broadway in the city of Boulder. The site offers us a great opportunity for workforce housing and mixed use on a high traffic corridor. For many commuters who will now be able to live and work in our neighborhood, catching the bus or hopping on the bike path to downtown Boulder, and beyond, will be easy and efficient. And, for those who prefer not to own a car, there’s a car share directly across the street.

This site, formerly the “People’s Clinic,” was sold by Mental Health Partners to one of our neighbors. The two existing buildings, built in 1950, cover approximately 11,300 s.f. of the site (20%) with a maximum height of 27 feet. Our two proposed buildings will cover 19,000 s.f. of the site (34%) with a maximum height of 35 feet – an existing building coverage increase of less than 15%.

Residential mixed use is the best use for this site – helping to create a “15-minute” walkable neighborhood between Lucky’s and Ideal. Since the concept plan was submitted in September 2015, we’ve worked with staff and community members to design a project for the benefit of future residents, neighbors, and the broader community that surrounds the site. Eighty-eight percent of the dwelling units will be affordable to people making 80% of the area median income. The majority of units will serve people in the middle income bracket. This infill development project will include a coffee shop and other kiosk-sized shops such as a cold pressed juice bar and a flower shop as well as a wellness center, offices and more. The project will have apartments over the retail and office space, six townhomes, and 74 surface parking spaces screened from Broadway by our buildings.

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A Convenient Home for People Who Work in Boulder

The Broadway site offers a unique opportunity for workforce housing along a busy arterial corridor that has the best transit service in Boulder, including the popular Skip route. The area is well situated for use of alternative modes of transportation for shopping, employment and recreation all within walking distance. Small units will be tailored to the lifestyle of single residents, couples, and young families. The efficiency living units we have proposed will keep rents affordable for people working in Boulder.

A Plan That Reflects the Neighborhood

We care about what happens in our neighborhood. Our plan started with friends and neighbors. We’ve listened to what they have envisioned for this site through dozens of one-on-one meetings, conversations at community gatherings, and emails with community members. Since our concept plan was reviewed by the Planning Board, we have been working with City Staff to prepare for our site review and respond to the Planning Board’s comments. In response to feedback during the concept phase, the project density has been reduced by 65%, and the building size and intensity has been scaled back.

Changes reflected in our new plan:

  • 94 dwelling units reduced to 33 dwelling units (65% reduction). In the Concept Plan there were no efficiency living units (ELUs) (475 s.f. or smaller units) and all 94 units counted as a dwelling unit under the Boulder Zoning Code (i.e. the Code). In the current plan, we are allowed 35 dwelling units under the RH-2 zoning (RH-2 is supported by City Staff) and we have 33 dwelling units under the Code, which counts ELUs as half of a unit
  • 17,000 s.f. of non-residential space reduced to 12,500 s.f. (26% reduction)
  • 114 parking spaces reduced to 74 spaces (35% reduction including an administrative reduction of 25% of required parking supported by City Staff)
  • Removal of underground parking (replaced with on grade parking screened from Broadway by the mixed use building)
  • One large building was split into two smaller buildings (greater permeability was requested by City Staff to make the buildings more contextual in the neighborhood)
  • 87,298 s.f. of above grade floor area reduced to 57,250 s.f. (34% reduction)
  • 30,800 s.f. (0.7 acre) of open space provided as required (however, the site is adjacent to more than two acres of school fields as well as there are 25 acres of community gardens and the North Boulder Recreation Center nearby)
  • The south end of the building is to be made flush with the sidewalk next to bus stop
  • RH-3 zoning proposed in Concept reduced to RH-2 consistent with zoning along Broadway corridor
  • Addition of a right-in, right-out access lane on Broadway to reduce traffic on Hawthorn
  • Diversification of housing types with the addition of six three bedroom townhomes and eight two bedroom apartments (in response to City Staff’s request for more diverse housing types)

Amenities in the new plan include: Subsidized Eco Passes • Coffee Shop/Juice Bar • Micro offices for locals to rent • Compliance with Dark Sky ordinances in our lighting plan • Wellness and Functional Fitness Center • Secure Bike Storage and more.

keep your ideas coming!

Iris and B: amenities, coffeeshop

More Community Engagement

Click for larger view and explanation


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Highest And Best Use Is Residential Mixed Use

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Extensive analysis of the site conditions and our community outreach show that the best use of the site is primarily as a residential development that serves people most likely to use alternative modes of transportation on a daily basis. Development of the site with the proposed mix of small scale residential units and limited commercial space is supported by the following factors:

  • Continues an existing pattern of development on the North Broadway corridor
  • Residential land use in harmony with surrounding properties
  • Residential use generates less traffic than other uses of this site which are allowed by current zoning
  • Multi-modal transit opportunities to minimize vehicular traffic: multiple bus routes on Broadway, bike lanes and paths nearby, eGo carshare and a B-cycle station across the street
  • Close proximity to larger commercial and retail services: North Broadway Shopping Center, Hillside Shops, Community Plaza
  • Quick and easy access to major employment centers: Downtown, CU, NIST
  • Close to recreational assets: Open Space, North Boulder Recreation Center, North Boulder Park

ABOUT TRAFFIC: Any development of the site must carefully consider the traffic impacts upon the adjacent school and neighborhood. Traffic engineers for the City of Boulder have now indicated they may allow a right-in, right-out access to Broadway from the north edge of the site. This will decrease traffic on Hawthorn and help ensure the development doesn’t impede traffic when parents drop off students in the morning and pick them up in the afternoon.

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The conversation about housing in Boulder is inextricably linked with conversations about the the need for affordable and workforce housing. The site at 3303 Broadway is best suited for workforce housing. The city of Boulder has established goals for the creation of housing that will allow the character and spirit of the community to continue while accommodating growth. These goals include making 10 percent of housing permanently affordable units; increasing workforce housing; creation of a variety of housing options in every part of the city including existing single-family neighborhoods; enhancement of neighborhood character; establishment of standards or alternative approaches to managing density to avoid just creating new large, high-priced, single-family homes. Our vision is to help the city of Boulder meet these goals. We also believe the more diverse mix of units with the 33 unit plan (slightly higher with the addition of 17 ELUs which count as half of a unit) provides opportunities for young families and seniors to live here. You can help us create this transit oriented development that will include workforce housing and support a 15-minute neighborhood.

Stay Informed

Keep up-to-date with Iris&B and other Fulton Hill Properties transformations.