Photo simulation of proposed billboard at Belleview and Quebec. Courtesy of Street Media Group
BY FREDA MIKLIN
Last October, Street Media Group (SMG) of Fort Collins notified Arapahoe County that it planned to apply for an amendment to the Planned United Development for the McDonald’s property at 5090 S. Quebec Street (I-25 and Belleview) to allow for the installation of a 60-foot tall, 680-square foot per side, double-sided electronic billboard on the property. The location is in unincorporated Arapahoe County (as is its neighbor to the north, Taco Bell).
On April 15, SMG submitted a letter of intent that said, in part, “The sign would be configured to face I-25, and would not be visible from residential properties.”
Nevertheless, local residents and elected officials were alarmed enough that on June 4, the Greenwood Village City Council unanimously passed a resolution of opposition to the plan. The resolution states that the proposed billboard is not allowed under applicable Arapahoe County zoning rules and is prohibited by applicable Colorado Department of Transportation rules and regulations for the planned location of the billboard. The resolution also directly challenges SMG’s claim that the sign would not be visible from residential properties, saying, “the sign will be highly visible to…those living in the 16-floor Landmark Towers Condominiums.”
Before eventually deciding to vote with his colleagues, Council Member Jerry Presley expressed concerns about whether Greenwood Village “should take formal opposition to this,” since the property is not in GV.
Council Member Dave Kerber made the case that this was a situation in which “we should reach out, a little bit beyond our borders and take positions on areas that adversely affect our citizens.” He cited the building at 7001 E. Belleview Avenue in Denver, just west of the McDonald’s property, as an example of what can happen, saying, “I get complaints, not every day, but a lot concerning the Western Union light,” referring to the yellow band of light visible atop the building at night. “If we could have done anything to douse that light, it would have been of benefit to the quality of life of our residents and their property values. I have some residents who had pretty nice views that are pretty much destroyed as a result of that.”
On May 7, the Arapahoe County Board of Commissioners unanimously adopted a temporary moratorium on the acceptance and processing of applications for any new billboard or other off-premise sign and on applications for conversion of any existing billboard or other off-premise sign to an electronic messaging sign. It will be in effect for up to six months to allow department of public works and development staff to evaluate the land use impacts of billboards, including electronic billboards and off-premise signs, and develop appropriate regulations.
Since the request for the electronic billboard at 5090 S. Quebec Street was submitted before the moratorium went into effect, it will be processed according to the regular rules and procedures of the department of public works and planning. Under those rules, the request will be heard by the Arapahoe County Planning Commission and then the Arapahoe County Board of Commissioners. That is presently expected to occur in approximately two months. The documents related to the case have been posted on the county’s web page for planning and land development. For additional information, contact Kat Hammer, Planner II, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
2018 All Rights Reserved. Villager Publishing |