Big blue box a retail attraction for Metro North

Posted 9/22/17

Although it was previously announced as a coming attraction, confirmation has now been documented that it is moving ahead for all of you retail shoppers. Our side of the Denver metro area is going to have its own IKEA store!!

The Swedish …

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Big blue box a retail attraction for Metro North

Posted

Although it was previously announced as a coming attraction, confirmation has now been documented that it is moving ahead for all of you retail shoppers. Our side of the Denver metro area is going to have its own IKEA store!!

The Swedish home-furnishings retailer has made it official by submitting construction plans to the City and County of Broomfield. The 400,000-square foot store (that is really big) will be located at the northwest corner of Interstate 25 and State Highway 7, (168 Avenue).

Ikea’s presence will make an impact

IKEA was required to purchase the entire parcel where it will be located. Out of the 123-acre site, the retail developer will take up 36 acres. An IKEA spokesman has stated that they will not sell off the balance of the property for development until the store is completed which will be the summer of 2019.

There will be a large clamoring of smaller retailers and restaurants to locate on this side of this key interchange given the pulling power which IKEA generates. Originally, the City of Broomfield had its eye on an outdoor mall type developer for this corner, but Thornton’s Larkridge shopping center across the highway to the east and Westminster’s The Orchard complex at 144 Avenue and I-25 put a damper on that possibility.

More sprawl coming toward Fort Collins

While shoppers will rejoice, the IKEA announcement has a downside. It further solidifies the influence of residential sprawl to the north along the I-25 corridor.

It’s not that it hasn’t already been happening because it has, but it adds fuel to the fire for further residential construction. In turn, more traffic will be generated as commuters farther out will be on the highways. Also, such sprawl will leave RTD further behind in bringing needed public transportation options to the area. We already have considerable development in place along this north corridor toward Fort Collins.

It is unfortunate, but urbanization is likely to take place in the entire segment between the current north side of the metro area and Fort Collins.

I remember at one-time city planners and the Denver Regional Council of Governments attempted to contain growth beyond a certain point, an effort to avoid the Californication of Colorado. Well, so much for that idea!

Good call on term limits

Term limits are always a hot topic.

In Colorado, we have term limits imposed on all elected positions except our Congressional folks in the U.S. House of Representatives and U.S. Senate. I won’t address the much overdo requirement to place term limits on Congress. Instead, I want to applaud the Westminster City Council in its adoption of term limits on all of their city boards and commissions.

According to City Clerk Michelle Parker, there are nine different board and commissions. Planning Commission, Election Commission, Environmental Advisory Board and Parks, Recreation, Libraries and Open Space Advisory Board are a partial list.

A total of 68 citizens, including alternates, serve on these advisory groups. Up until quite recently, individual citizens could serve as many terms as they wanted as long as city council would keep re-appointing them. I can recall some individuals served at least 12 to 15 years or longer on the same board or commission. Now, thanks to city council addressing this policy, starting January 1, 2018 or 2019 with new appointments, the appointees will work under term limitations.

How the term limits will work

Term limits will be four two-year terms. If a member who has reached the term limit wishes to apply for reappointment to the same board/commission, the person must sit out a full two-year term to be considered eligible.

In the alternative, the person may seek immediate appointment to a different advisory group among the openings on the other boards/commissions. Currently seated members will not be term limited until such time that they re-apply for appointment to their respective board or commission.

The concept of term limits for boards and commissions was presented to city council and the then-seated boards and commissions members back in my day, but had a totally different outcome.

The politics among some of the seated strong-willed board and commission members pushed hard on city council to leave well enough alone.

While there were usually citizens who had expressed interest in serving each year when vacancies came up, many of the same folks were reappointed.

First, more citizens should be afforded the opportunity to serve, and second, new blood is healthy after many years of serving.

Good call by city council. Those interested in applying should note that the cycle to apply is coming up in a couple of weeks or so. Watch for city media announcements.

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