” full city block and then some will host a grocery store and about 200 apartments — about 20 of them attainable for lower income residents — if all goes according to a plan put together by EXDO Properties and City Councilman Albus Brooks.
The project requires new building rules to move forward, and the Denver City Council’s Land Use, Transportation and Infrastructure Committee approved those rules Tuesday, sending them to the full legislative body for a vote.
Also: The developer needs more space to fit a 30,000 square-foot grocery store and enough apartments to make affordable rental units pencil out.
So he bought a street from the Colorado Department of Transportation.
The new-look block will engulf Lawrence Street where it swoops between Downing and Marion. Those streets will become two-way roads, which aligns with a 2009 city plan for the area and is more conducive to walking and biking.
“We thought that if we could square off this whole block, we could provide an amenity that this neighborhood desperately needs, which is a grocery store with fresh produce and affordable food for all, and that’s the vision here,” said EXDO managing partner and Cole resident Andrew Feinstein.
A grocery store near two rail stations (30th and Downing and 38th and Blake) is a big deal for Cole and the surrounding neighborhoods, which comprise one of Denver’s many food deserts.
The grocery would provide 100 local jobs, according to Feinstein, and make walking, biking and transit better options for more people.
“I think when we think about smart, equitable development for the community, these are the kinds of things we want to see,” said Brooks, who lives in the neighborhood. “This is the urbanist vision for development.””
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Sachs, David. Denverite 29 January 2019.