Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Overlay Railroad Derailed

The ability of a small group of people to impose their will on an entire neighborhood and have a zoning change implemented by the City of Denver has finally been curtailed. The zoning overlay in City Park West, proudly proclaimed by now Councilwoman Madison as her greatest accomplishment, would no longer be possible under the new ordinance (525) enacted by City Council on Oct. 22, 2007. In the case of our neighborhood, as I repeatedly stated back when Madison was running for office, approximately 130 out of 635 property owners (20%) voted to impose a zoning overlay called OD9 on 30 blocks in our neighborhood. Under the new ordinance 525, it will now take 51%. Thanks to Councilman Brown for getting this done. Perhaps in the future someone can challenge the OD9 in our neighborhood and get it overturned, since it was inherently unfair. Those applications still in the pipeline (Cole neighborhood?) will be considered under the old rules, but let’s hope that the minority will not be allowed to run the Overlay Railroad again. (Note: I was not able to view Council proceedings from Monday, but will when the video record is made available.)


  1. Anonymous1:52 PM

    Yet another dig at Carla Madison--You do hold a grudge, don't you?

    Of course 51% is better than 20%. However, what you don't consider, is the overwhelming apathy and lack of engagement of many residents.

    Take Cole neighborhood, as you mention it in your post. Most of the residents don't speak English, and/or could care less about becoming involved in a neighborhood association, community policing initiative, or even a neighborhood watch group. They just don't care, and are overwhelmingly apathetic about the current state and/or future of their community.

    So this rule just simply means overlays like you are so against won't happen anymore in many neighborhoods, since you'll have better luck convincing Rosey O'Donnell that Al Quaeda blew up the WTC than getting 51% to support ANYTHING.