BY FREDA MIKLIN
One cell tower equipment case resolved, one deferred
On the agenda for the Aug. 6, Greenwood Village City Council was a request to amend an existing special use permit at Greenwood Community Church (GCC) to allow five feet of building height above the maximum allowed under the zoning code for new cellular equipment for T-Mobile West, LLC.
Council heard from representatives of T-Mobile that they needed to add the additional height to six pilasters sitting atop the church at Belleview and Holly so as to install new eight-foot by one-foot antennas inside five of the pilasters (the sixth was being changed for architectural consistency). They explained that the current antennas, installed 18 years ago, were no longer adequate to provide good service to GV customers and were causing interference in the T-Mobile network all the way to Lakewood.
Several council members asked if there were other options. Councilman Dave Bullock asked T-Mobile if they would accept a requirement that they design their equipment such that the pilasters could also accommodate another carrier as a condition of approving the five-foot height variance from the zoning code. Annie Mackiewicz, representing T-Mobile, politely explained that they could not agree to such a condition without knowing the size and type of equipment the other carrier would be using or whether the other signal would interfere with T-Mobile’s.
New pilasters at Greenwood Community Church will house larger antennas for T-Mobile West, LLC. Photos by Freda Miklin
City attorney Tonya Haas-Davidson interrupted the proceedings to point out to the council that this was not a telecommunications case, it was a special use permit amendment, and that it had to be decided based upon the applicable criteria set forth in the law and listed in the staff report for council’s use.
Council members who were at the meeting voted to approve the request to increase the height of the building 5 feet above what was permitted in the code. Councilman Jerry Presley was absent.
The other case on the agenda had been continued from July 2. Also, from GCC, it’s a new special use permit request to place a 50-foot imitation pine tree near other real trees on the property, to house Sprint cellular equipment. At the applicant’s request, it was continued again to Sept. 17. No substantive explanation was given for the additional six-week delay.
Council wades into policy on grass height
Bullock introduced a discussion about whether municipal code language addressing unsightly property should apply to areas of the city he described as rural. He explained that the issue arose from an ongoing personal feud between two neighbors in his district who each live on 2.5-acre properties. One had reported that the other had weeds on his property exceeding the city’s eight-inch limit. Bullock stated he had visited the property and didn’t think the weeds were overgrown. The municipal code requires that grasses, as well as weeds, must be less than eight inches tall within 100 feet of a public street or adjacent property. Other council members, particularly Dave Kerber and Anne Ingebretsen, didn’t think it made sense to address a rule to certain areas since there were grasses exceeding eight inches in height all over. Haas-Davidson pointed out that the term rural is not used in the municipal code. Council member Steve Moran asked what percentage of the city wasn’t covered by a homeowners’ association (HOA). It was pointed out that many areas have HOA’s, but membership is not mandatory, and they have widely varying abilities to force compliance with their own rules. (HOA’s have no ability to enforce city code). Kerber said that the HOA in Greenwood Hills is voluntary, “it’s a club.” Bullock said that he hadn’t attended an HOA meeting in 24 years. After a long discussion in a study session before and after the regular council meeting, council directed city staff to draft a policy to reflect their objective.
Artist’s rendering of new GV public works building at 10001 E. Costilla.
New GV Public Works building is almost underway
Jeremy Hanak, public works manager, reported that plans to build the new $8.5 million building at 10001 E. Costilla to replace the current public works facility are progressing and construction is expected to begin late this year. Currently $562,000 over budget, Hanak said he is working with the city manager to identify cost savings that will eliminate that deficit. Kerber asked how much it cost to have the building LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) certified, as was planned. Hanak estimated that cost at $200,000. Kerber said he didn’t think it was necessary to have the LEED designation. Council members George Lantz, Judy Hilton, Tom Dougherty, Bullock and Ingebretsen agreed, though they felt the building should be energy efficient.
Good News! Plumbed restrooms are coming to High Line Canal parking area on Orchard Road west of Colorado Boulevard and to Castlewood Park
In 2017 the prior GV city council approved a plan to build plumbed men’s and women’s restrooms at Castlewood Park on Holly Street north of Orchard Road and at the parking area for the High Line Canal Trail on Orchard Road west of Colorado Boulevard, subject to approval for matching funds from Arapahoe County Open Spaces to limit the cost to GV taxpayers. Suzanne Moore, the city’s director of parks, trail and recreation, reported that funding had been approved for the Castlewood Park facility and indications were positive that the High Line Canal trail access location would also be approved soon. Total cost for both sets of plumbed restrooms is $420,000, of which $157,500 will come from GV’s capital improvement budget and $262,500 is expected to be provided by Arapahoe County.
GVPD Commander Joe Bradley, Audrey DiManna, communications manager, Susan Redmond, state compliance officer for public safety department, Biagio Burriesci, GV police public information officer and training recruit officer, Linda Schneider, assistant to the chief of police, and Dustin Varney, chief of GV police, hold the award for best practices.
GV Police Department receives professional accreditation for best practices
Susan Redmond, compliance officer for the Colorado Department of Public Safety, presented Police Chief Dustin Varney a plaque acknowledging the city’s police department as meeting the 213 professional standards for best practices in all areas of law enforcement, based on a comprehensive review and on-site interviews of personnel by the state department of public safety. Varney credited his staff and especially John Jackson, city manager and former police chief for GV.
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