Zoning Changes Produce Quick Development Results in a Colorado Town

In September, the city of Longmont, Colorado approved new land use and zoning laws. By April, developers were proposing thousands of residential units and hundreds of thousands of square feet in commercial space.

May 23, 2019, 1:00 PM PDT

By James Brasuell @CasualBrasuell


mimher / Shutterstock

Longmont, Colorado is described as a traditionally rural community, currently challenged by quick growth and booming real estate costs.

To keep up with the changes, the city in September 2018 enacted new zoning and land development codes for the first time in 17 years. Now the first development proposals under the new laws are working through the system, "providing a glimpse into the future," according to an article by John Spina:

In order to minimize sprawl and preserve as much open space as possible, the city decided to focus new housing units into five new mixed-use districts throughout the city, incentivizing four-story buildings, greater density and more affordable housing along major thoroughfares and business corridors.

If successful, those changes will transform Longmont from a mid-sized town into a bustling metropolis with large walkable business districts.

The development enabled by the new zoning code, implemented to achieve that vision, is quickly arriving for review by Longmont Planning and Development Services. "As of April, there were 39 active development proposals," according to Spina. "If all of the projects are approved, more than 1,700 apartments and townhomes would be created, 400 more than all of the housing approved in the previous year."

More details about what these projects will deliver in the quickly transforming town between Boulder and Fort Collins are included in the source article.

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