Message From the President
Dear Neighbors and Supporters,
The Urban Dweller, Capitol Hill United Neighborhoods' (CHUN) monthly e-newsletter, is now online. Here is the latest overview from Denver’s largest, oldest registered neighborhood organization and your community advocate:
CHUN to bestow more than $5000 in SEED funding. CHUN's SEED Awards support community involvement and foster locally grown solutions for the public good. This year, CHUN will award more than $5,000 in community impact funds. Program priorities include: Smart development, Enrichment activities, Environmental sustainability and Diversity. Details on funding priorities and an on-line application are available HERE. Past projects include public murals, access to personal toiletries for people in need, computers for PTAs, and more. If you have a great project that needs financial support, apply today. The deadline to apply is November 20, 2020.
Membership continues to grow. CHUN works to improve the quality of life throughout Denver, and we cannot do this work without you. Many thanks to all who joined or renewed their membership last month including: Teresa S., Seth H., Matthew L., Susan S. Benjamin O., Caroline T., Sally L., Bernie J., the Althea Center for Engaged Spirituality, the Parlour Capitol Hill, Denver Compost Collective, SafeHouse Denver, Inc., and MORE! It is because of this continued generosity, CHUN is able to boost its impact in the community. Join or renew today.
CHUN cares. Earlier in September, business member Barbara de Jong, CFP (Edward Jones Investments) and I hosted a virtual roundtable to discuss The CARES Act. The Act was passed earlier this year, and it provides neighbors with some incentives to support their local community including up to $300 in qualified charitable deductions on your 2020 tax filing next year (even if you do normally itemize your deductions). Here is a recap of the Act and other helpful information.
The Future of Racines and 650 Sherman Street: On September 30, CHUN hosted a virtual town hall to discuss 650 Sherman Street. The property was home to Denver dining establishment, and a much-missed institution, Racines Restaurant. Joining us for the town hall were Todd Nicotra, of AvalonBay Communities, and Robert Miller, an architect with StudioPBA. It was a robust 90 minute overview of the proposed Avalon: Governor's Park (AGP). AGP will be a multi-family residential property. Typical rezoning topics such as traffic feasibility, height restrictions, design renderings, and more were addressed. CHUN members stressed importance for more neighbor engagement and expressed concerns about the lack of affordable units associated with the project. I, along with several other CHUN board members, encouraged enhanced community partnerships and financial investments in local human service organizations as a part of the developer's entry into the Denver development market. Check out this presentation for more information about the project. You can also contact Todd at Todd_Nicotra@avalonbay.com. If you have feedback you would like to share with Councilman Chris Hinds, please email District10@denvergov.org.
1290 Williams Street Rezoning Approved by LUTI Committee. CHUN's rezoning for the Tears-McFarlane property at 1290 Williams Street was thoughtfully reviewed and deliberated at the September 15 meeting of Denver City Council's Land Use, Transportation, and Infrastructure Committee. The committee unanimously moved the application forward and it will be considered by the full City Council later this month. If you have questions or would like more information, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
How can we help small businesses, wellness providers, local artisans, and more during this time of need? With the days growing colder, I am worried about the health and well being of so many in our community. With the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and sustained economic uncertainty, the livelihoods of so many are at risk. CHUN's mission is to engage citizens, help neighbors, and facilitate opportunities to support local businesses. If there is a small business you would like us to feature, please email the name of the business, why you support them, and what CHUNs members and followers can do to help. This information will be shared across our Facebook, NextDoor, Twitter, and Instagram platforms.
Teamwork is key. CHUN's staff and board are doing amazing work in the face of uncertainty and unrest. A special shout out goes to our groundskeeper Randle Loeb for keeping the Tears-McFarlane House safe, secure, and well maintained. Shirley Howson, CHUN's office manager, fields a number of community inquiries each day along with supporting our overall administrative operations. Many thanks to our board for their continued leadership. I am honored to be working with such extraordinary group of committed, neighborhood advocates.
The 2020 General Election is just weeks away. If you are registered to vote, make sure your registration is up to date. If you are not registered to vote, register today. Don't delay. Visit DenverVotes.org to register, update your address, and get other important information about voting. As Susan B. Anthony said, "Someone struggled for your right to vote. Use it." Your vote will help define Denver's tomorrow.
Travis Leiker, MPA
President | Capitol Hill United Neighborhoods, Inc.
Monthly Member Profile
The Denver Botanic Gardens has spent more than $116 million revamping itself over the past decade. There’s a new science pyramid, gift shop and welcome center, a children’s garden, an outdoor bistro, a tea garden and a massive greenhouse complex.
Old structures (like the glass-enclosed Boettcher Memorial Tropical Conservatory) have been refurbished, and new ones (like a green-roofed parking garage) have been built from the ground up.
But none of those projects contains the potential to transform the garden and the way Denverites use it as much as the Freyer-Newman Center, the 13th and final step of its master redevelopment plan, which opened to the public last week.
Read the article on The Denver Post.
From the people who brought you LoDo, Union Station and the Molly Brown House …
Historic Denver wasn’t always Historic Denver. The nonprofit dedicated to preserving the Mile High City’s physical history didn’t have a name when concerned neighbors banded together in 1970 to save Capitol Hill’s Molly Brown House from demolition.
But over the decades, it’s notched major victories that have helped transform the city from cowtown to millennial haven — including the redevelopment of Lower Downtown into a spot for nightlife and a residential district, which helped spur the city’s revival at large in the 1990s and early 2000s.
“Historic preservation has been really intimately tied to Denver’s growth and success by introducing identity and cohesion to neighborhoods,” said Annie Robb Levinsky, Historic Denver’s executive director. “The landmarks and neighborhoods that weave together and connect our city are our historic fabric.”
Read the article on The Denver Post.
Take the Park Road Closures Survey
To prevent overcrowding and to encourage social-distancing, many Denver Parks & Recreation (DPR) parks saw internal park roads and parking lots closed during the summer. This survey will allow you to share general opinions of closing roads and parking lots within DPR parks, and will also focus on certain parks that we need to hear community input on.
This survey will close November 2, 2020.
Free Guided Bike Tours of Denver - through 10/31
The Downtown Denver Partnership and Gates Corporation are providing free guided bike tours of Downtown Denver and the 5280 Trail through TourDenver in lieu of Bike to Work Day.
Groups, individuals, company teams, and families are welcome to join a guided tour through October 31st. Tours can be booked in 30- or 60- minute windows.
East Central Area Plan at Denver City Council - 10/05
City Council Public Hearing
5:30 p.m., Monday, October 5
Virtual meeting via Zoom
How to participate:
Understanding Displacement - 10/07
The panelists will be:
- Renee Martinez-Stone, Initiatives Director at West Denver Renaissance Collaborative
- Tiana Patterson, Esq., Public Partnerships and Legal Director at Elevation Community Land Trust
- Jamie Torres, District 3 Councilwoman
- Laura E. Aldrete, Executive Director at Community Planning and Development
- Carrie Makarewicz, Assistant Professor at UC Denver
- Katie McKenna, Senior Program Director at Enterprise Community Partners
Community Workshop on Denver's First Open Water Plan - 10/20
The need for a citywide water strategy has never been greater as our growing population unites to face climate change and forecasted water shortages for up to 2.5 million people statewide by 2050.
Denver One Water will break down historic silos between drinking water, wastewater, and other uses to cooperatively manage the entire water cycle. Doing so will better meet social and environmental needs and create predictable policies to advance stewardship of this precious resource.
This is the moment to get involved. Join the One Water movement and help shape our first citywide water strategy. The first of two community workshops is scheduled for Tusday, October 20th at 5:00 PM.
Growing Denver's Parks and Recreation System: Acquisition Plan Meeting - 10/22
With the passage of the 2018 Parks Legacy Fund ballot measure, Denver Parks and Recreation has a dedicated source of funds for park, trail and facility improvements, including acquisition. Guided by the Game Plan and the Parks Legacy Fund (2A) Five-Year Plan, DPR is developing a Strategic Acquisition Plan to define the approach for growing our park system.
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- Another Apartment Tower Proposed in Denver. More than 300 Units Pitched for Capitol Hill
- Building Blocks: Inside the complicated fight to preserve Denver's historic properties
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- Candidate Profile: Lisa Escárcega, Board Of Education District 1
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- Gov. Polis, school officials address decline in enrollment, urge parents to get kids in some type of learning
A Special Thanks to Some of Our Business and Community Partner Members: