Meeting to focus on proposed Englewood residential complex

Meeting will be Aug. 10 at Englewood Recreation Center 

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The design team for a proposed 395-unit Englewood residential complex will host a neighborhood meeting at 6 p.m. on Wednesday, Aug. 10, at Englewood Recreation Center, located at 1155 W. Oxford Ave. 

Embrey Partners, a real estate investment company that has built more than 10 properties in Colorado, is applying to develop a townhome and multi-family housing complex in Englewood on a lot along West Oxford Avenue and South Navajo Street. 

The property is approximately 8.4 acres and currently is home to businesses including Sam’s Automotive Reconditioning Center, located at 1314 W. Oxford Ave. 

The proposal would include a purchase of the property and does not involve eminent domain.

Representatives from the design team plan to offer a presentation of the team’s current plans and answer questions about the project during the Aug. 10 meeting, according to the neighborhood meeting notice

Evolution of development proposal 

Development plans for this proposal have been in progress for about a year, said Phil Workman, a partner at The Pachner Company, which handles community engagement for the development

Originally, Embrey Partners proposed building two four-story multi-family buildings, amounting to about 555 units. 

However, after a neighborhood meeting with residents who voiced concerns, the developers reduced the development plan to about 396 units, said Chris Alvarado, the vice president of development at Embrey Partners, during a community meeting on June 9

Now, the number of planned units is 395, with 34 three-story townhomes and approximately 361 multi-family homes in a four-story building, according to the meeting notice. 

The townhomes would have their own garage and the multi-family building would have its own parking garage surrounded by residential units. The proposal also features a pool, courtyard, dog park and greenery throughout the property, as well as plans for some sidewalk and roadway improvements. 

In the June 9 meeting, Alvarado told attendees that a percentage of the units would be affordable in keeping with City of Englewood requirements. However, in a July 21 email, Workman noted that “there is no requirement from Englewood for affordable housing” and that “it has always been our goal to provide housing that is 'market rate.’”

Workman said the developer would work with the city in the event of any affordability requirements as the approval process goes forward.

What does the lot’s current zoning permit? 

Embrey Partners would need a rezoning of the area to go ahead with its plans. Currently, the lot that Embrey Partners wants to develop has I-1 zoning, representing a light industrial zone district, and several potential uses of the property would require no zoning change.

Under the existing I-1 industrial zoning, a range of developments are permitted, such as a tower structure for a telecommunication facility, an office building, a hotel, a warehousing or storage facility and an RTD maintenance facility, according to the city’s Code of Ordinances

Also listed in the Code of Ordinances is a table summarizing the dimensional requirements for principal structures, which shows that there are no maximum height restrictions for structures in I-1 zoning — meaning, for example, that there would be no height limits for a self-storage facility.

A multi-unit dwelling, however, has height restrictions ranging from 32 feet to 100 feet, depending on the type of zoning and lot, and the Embrey Partners plan calls for the tallest structure to be four stories.

Multi-unit dwellings are not permitted in industrial zoning districts. To be able to develop the proposed townhome and multi-family housing complex, the developers have to submit a planned unit development application to facilitate a rezoning of the property.

The planned unit development application will be reviewed by the planning and zoning commission, which will then offer a recommendation to city council. City council has the authority to approve or deny the application. 

Workman said it could be September or October before the team presents before the planning and zoning commission. There will be a public hearing for both the planning and zoning commission and city council meetings, during which residents can share opinions on the project.

The developers will also submit a “major plat application” to combine the separate lots and dedicate a right-of-way along West Oxford Avenue, according to the meeting notice. 

If everything goes smoothly, Alvarado said on June 9 that the team could probably get rezoning and site approval around November or December this year and have a groundbreaking in the summer of 2023.

Those who have questions or comments prior to the Aug. 10 meeting can contact Bonnie Niziolek, a member of the project’s design team, by emailing bniziolek@norris-design.com or calling 303-892-1166.

Englewood, Englewood City Council, Englewood Development, West Oxford Avenue

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