Denver's November Election Will Answer Big Questions About the Built Environment
Jon Murray takes a dive into Referred Questions 2A through 2H and Initiated Ordinance 300 on the November citywide ballot in Denver.
Referred Questions 2A through 2H pitch a $937 million bond package that includes funding for more than 460 projects across Denver. There are projects under the categories of transportation and mobility (2A), cultural facilities (2B), and ambulatory care center (2C), public safety facilities (2D), library system renovations (2E), parks and open space facilities (2F), and general public facilities. According to Murray the entire package is the first general obligation bond requested of voters since 2007’s voter-approved $550 million Better Denver Bonds, which will wrap up its building programs this year.
Then there is Ordinance 300, which is a voter-initiated ballot item "[aimed] to reduce Denver’s urban “heat island” effect by requiring the roofs of large new buildings to incorporate rooftop gardens or solar panels," according to Murray.
The green-roof requirements — along with new standards — would apply to most new buildings of at least 25,000 square feet, to existing buildings above that threshold when their roofs are replaced, and to existing buildings when additions cause their floor area to reach that threshold. Solar panels or “green roof” components would have to cover at least 20 percent of a roof’s surface, depending on the building’s size.
According to Murray, building and commercial real estate interests are gearing up to fight the measure.