Message from the President
Greetings Friends and Neighbors,
Urban Dweller, Capitol Hill United Neighborhoods' (CHUN) monthly e-newsletter, is available online. Here is the latest from Denver's largest, oldest registered neighborhood organization and advocate:
Neighborhood Ice Cream Social. Denver Days week began on Jul 31. CHUN is partnering with City Street Investors and Milkbox Ice Creamery to host a neighborhood ice cream social at the historic Tears-McFarlane located at 1290 Williams Street. Join us on Thursday, August 5th, from 4:30 - 6:30 pm for conversation and connectivity with friends and neighbors. An assortment of COLD, SWEET treats will be on hand for just $4.
Smart land use, preservation, and homeownership. At our July 29th Board of Directors meeting, the organization announced its support for the proposed rezoning of 555 E. 8th Avenue from its current designation to G-MU-3, UO-3. The proposed rezoning promotes historic preservation by landmarking the property AND adds residential uses. CHUN also supports the rezoning of 2137 Glenarm Place to G-RX-5. If approved, the property will be transformed from a vacant parking lot to a new residential development with some mixed use opportunities. Further, the project will provide pathways to homeownership and advances CHUN’s mission to promote walkable access to amenities for live, work and recreate.
Geographic boundary reminder. Did you know CHUN represents neighborhoods from 22nd Avenue (North) to 1st Avenue (South) and from Colorado Boulevard (East) to Broadway (West)? CHUN's geographic boundaries also overlap with council districts 7 (Jolon Clark), 9 (Candi CdeBaca), and 10 (Chris Hinds). If you have thoughts or perspectives on myriad issues impacting these districts, contact CHUN at firstname.lastname@example.org; you can also contact your district council member directly or email the full council at Dencc@denvergov.org.
Potential "Shake Up" to City Council Make Up. CHUN is monitoring ongoing conversations about the future of Denver's legislative branch. Councilperson Candi CdeBaca and others are expected to introduce a proposal to eliminate the two at-large positions on council at an August 10 Finance and Governance Committee meeting; some other significant reconfiguration may be incorporated in this proposal. CHUN reached out to its network of followers, membership, partner RNOs, and other stakeholder groups to gather others' perspectives. The survey found that the job approval for at-large council members remained more favorable than that of the district council members. On the matter of eliminating the at-large council positions, 61% oppose such an approach and 58% say this would not improve constituent services. The COVID19 pandemic caused delays in US Census reporting, and the timeline to redistrict is already shortened. Significant changes to the City's charter, beyond the decennial redistricting process, should include the same considerations and public comment required in other city-based policymaking (e.g. landmark designation, ADU approvals, rezoning, liquor licensing, adopting neighborhood plans, et al.) Thus far, none of these same mandates or constituent courtesies have been afforded to Denverites. Council's Finance and Governance Committee will take up the matter on Tuesday, August 10 beginning at 1 pm. You can register to attend the meeting via zoom. You can also sign up to speak either in person or via zoom on August 10.
Denver Board of Adjustment stands with unhoused Denverites and Service Providers. The Denver Board of Adjustment lacked the necessary votes to overturn the zoning administrator's decision to grant the permits allowing a temporary safe outdoor site located in the parking lot of the Park Hill United Methodist Church. As was shared in a public statement earlier this year, CHUN remains committed to civility and encourages Denverites to be solutions oriented. Complex city issues require Denver-wide solutions and community cooperation.
Register for the 13th Annual CHUN Wine Tasting. After a 1-year hiatus caused by the pandemic, CHUN is pleased announce that it will host the 13th Annual Wine Tasting on Wednesday, September 29th at 5:30 pm. Join city leaders, friends, and neighbors for a lively evening featuring a wine tasting, light hors d'oeuvres from local restaurants, and an opportunity to connect with fellow Denverites. Special thanks to our early supporters at Carboy Winery, Logan Street, Joy Wine and Spirits, Ivy on 7th, and Denver7. Register HERE today. (Note: This event will comply with guidance from local and state public health officials, as well as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), regarding large gatherings and events at the time of the event.)
New Partnerships Coming Soon. In August, CHUN will announce two new philanthropic partnerships supporting the greater Capitol Hill Community. The first will focus on affordable housing and work to promote economic self-sufficiency. The second will be an innovative collaboration that brings together impact investing and two decades-old Capitol Hill-based organizations. We are excited about these new endeavors. Stay tuned for more details.
“It is not in the still calm of life, or the repose of a pacific station, that great characters are formed,” Abigail Adams wrote to her son John Quincy Adams during the height of the American Revolution. She continues, “habits of a vigorous mind are formed in contending with difficulties. Great necessities call out great virtues.”
President & Executive Director
Capitol Hill United Neighborhoods
Member of the Month
Cherry Creek Automotive
CHUN News and Events
Signature CHUN Wine Tasting is September 29
James Ronczy wins CHUN Membership Challenge Giveaway
Historic Denver Home Round Up discusses ADUs
CHUN History Matters co-chair Bruce Caughey attended the July Historic Denver Home Round Up where he heard an excellent presentation from Sarah Senderhauf from L&D Construction discussing Accessory Dwelling Units (ADU) and from Lindsay Newbegin discussing how she added an addition to her historic home. You can listen to the presentation here: www.youtube.com/watch?v=IkjkWZJ-PFY
Timely Committee Reports
Several community engagement activities were completed so far this year including a virtual master gardener class and an electronics recycling event. With the time remaining in 2021, the committee will focus on the CHUN-Talkwa, the Little Free Pantry and the SEED Awards.
Community Interviews and CHUN-Talkwa: The committee continues to seek candidates to interview. It could be a friend or someone that you would like to get to know more. Stories will be used for hosting a series called “CHUN-Talkwa” to be scheduled this October at the Tears-McFarlane House. A white paper will also be created and shared with our council members, as they may find learning what matters most to residents to be very informative. If you would like to nominate someone, please email board member Jamie LaRue at email@example.com or call 720-530-4294 to get involved.
Little Free Pantry: Discussions with several community partners are underway to find a new location for the Little Free Pantry, which provides a hyper-local way of providing nonperishables to those in need.
SEED Awards: Last year’s SEED Award recipients have been contacted to see whether they have completed their project and have a story to share. Their stories will help promote this year’s SEED Awards program, which will be done through Urban Dweller, social media, and possibly Channel 7. Applications will be due in November, with announcements made in December/January. The Verizon Foundation, as well as CHUN members and supporters make these microgrants possible. Thank you!
Denver and Colorado News and Events
Cherry Creek North Food & Wine scheduled for August 11 - 14
Home Sharing Is So Much More Than Renting a Room
Sunshine Home Share Colorado is a nonprofit organization that builds relationships within the community by thoughtfully and safely matching a home provider over the age of 55 with a home seeker of any age. Matches are based on “goodness of fit” and the social work process conducted by Geriatric social workers, supports safety and compatibility in the matching process. This mutually beneficial relationships potentially offers the opportunity for trading supportive services (gardening, household chores, transportation) and companionship for affordable rent. Home sharing helps an older adult earn extra income while helping someone in need of affordable rent find a home. When matches are made slowly, and thoughtfully they last. This is a longer term-housing solution helping our seniors.
Learn more about Sunshine Home Share HERE.
Public Art Tours are back in Denver
Public art tours are back! Would you like to join a walking or biking tour around the city to learn about the murals, sculptures and other kinds of art that are part of the Denver Public Art program? Tours are free and scheduled weekly through September. Learn more.
Updated Zoning Approved for Golden Triangle Neighborhood
Update on Park Hill Safe Outdoor Spaces (SOS) lawsuit filed by residents
A newsletter article in Uptown on the Hill tells that the lawsuit filed by four residents of Park Hill, aiming to keep the CVC from locating an SOS in Park Hill, has not yet been fully resolved. The articles says that the judge dismissed the lawsuit, saying the opponents hadn’t exhausted all legal remedies before filing the lawsuit. They then appealed the permit given by Denver Zoning Administrator Tina Axelrad, which allowed the Park Hill SOS — and also they appealed allowing any SOSes to exist in Denver.
The appeals were heard on July 20 and July 27 by the Board of Appeals (BOA) , a citizen oversight board on zoning issues. The BOA held a 5-hour hearing on July 20 and voted 3-2 to uphold the use determination, which allows SOSes anywhere in the city through 2023. The BOA hearing on July 27 was equally lengthy, and a decision will not be reached until their meeting on August 3 because one member said he needed additional time to pursue legal advisement. The meeting starts at 9 a.m.; listen in at https://denvergov-org.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZctcu6qpzwiE9SWrFICRhjGVS45e0w_DFFn. Only two votes in opposition to the appeal are needed for the Park Hill SOS to continue, as it takes a supermajority to overrule the City’s previous decision allowing that use.
The next step will be up to the opponents, as it is possible they could file another lawsuit, after having exhausted all legal remedies.
Annual Festival for Life event in Cheesman Park on August 21
Colorado Health Network (CHN) is delighted to share that the annual Festival for Life: AIDS Walk Colorado will be in person this year on August 21 in Cheesman Park.
The 5K Walk & Run will be exclusively virtual with runners able to complete a 5K route of their choosing then upload their finishing time and route details to the event site.
The Festival will include free health screenings, the 10th annual Diva Dash, a refreshment garden, panels from the AIDS Memorial Quilt and more!
Construction on East First Avenue in Cherry Creek and Denver Water Study in Congress Park
Denver Water will begin a water main installation project on East First Avenue in late July. The project will last through November 2021. Working hours will typically be from 7 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday.
The project will occur primarily on East First Avenue, from University Boulevard to Marion Street.
During construction, there will be daily lane closures on East First Avenue in this area. Motorists should expect delays. Local access to residences and businesses will be maintained throughout the project.
In Congress Park, Denver Water is also exploring how Aquifer Storage and Recovery (ASR) may contribute to delivering high-quality drinking water for our customers far into the future. As part of this study, crews will drill an exploratory test well this year and collect data on the underlying aquifer at Denver Water’s facility in Congress Park.
The Urban Dweller is published on the first, working Monday of each month. To submit your content via email, please click on the button below. Content is due by the 25th DAY of each month.