Lincoln Station plan passes review in Lone Tree

City council will weigh proposal at Aug. 3 meeting

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The Lone Tree Planning Commission discussed the proposed improvement plan for the development of a site at Lincoln Station during a meeting on July 13. The site spans 5.23 acres and will include 425 multi-family units, 3,000 square feet of ground-level retail space, a leasing office and a one-level addition to a preexisting parking garage, among other residential amenities and infrastructure improvements.

Century Communities owns and developed the site located west of I-25 and east of Park Meadows Drive. Representatives from companies in charge of the site’s civil engineering, landscape architecture, architecture and surveying, as well as from Century Communities, attended the meeting to describe the site plans in more detail and provide answers to any questions the commission had.

Roshana Floyd, senior planner for the City of Lone Tree, presented the initial report on the site. She explained that the approval of the plan requires two cash payments — $180,840 cash-in-lieu for parks, made payable to the City of Lone Tree, and $84,468 cash-in-lieu payment to the Douglas County School District.

She explained that when reviewing regulations, they always start with a comprehensive plan and then look at planned development districts that may apply to the site. This site is covered by Heritage Hills Planned Development under the ninth amendment and an associated framework plan for Heritage Hills called Omnipark under the fourth amendment.

Floyd explained that the plan for this site was developed in 2004, before the city annexed it in 2012, so some of the development regulations have changed since then.

“So one additional item to note is that when staff does review some of these older plans relative to our new proposals for development, we do have a section in code, 16-1-30, that is a bit of a catchall and provides the city flexibility to balance current and perhaps outdated development regulations,” Floyd said.

Jim Francescon, corporate vice president at Century Communities, said that the apartment complex would include studio, one-bedroom, two-bedroom and three-bedroom apartments with an average of 811 square feet.

“We really program everything that you'd expect in a classic apartment project,” Francescon said. “From a pet standpoint, we have a dog park and a pet grooming center. We have a pool and spa. There's multiple courtyards throughout the development. There's a rooftop deck.”

“One of the really unique attributes of this development is that most of the western-facing units are going to have unobstructed mountain views,” Francescon said.

Derrick Paus, an architectural designer at KTGY, the site's architect, explained that they wanted the apartment building to look like it's supposed to be a part of the community. They used colors from other buildings in the area to ascertain that its design fit in with its surroundings.

On the east side of the building, plans originally included a blank wall, but they ultimately decided to give it some interest for apartment owners and people passing by. “We used existing material that we're applying throughout the rest of the project, and a lot of colors as well, and coordinated more of a mural, so something that you can appreciate as you drive by on I-25,” said Paus.

Planning Commissioner Marissa Harmon commended the proposed apartment complex's design. “When you're driving down Park Meadows Drive from Lincoln, and you look at the scale of a five-story building next to a parking lot, I just want to say that I think you guys did a wonderful job of easing the scale of the massing of your architecture,” Harmon said. “I really think that it broke that up beautifully, so I think that's a hard transition, and you did the best you could.”

In terms of landscaping, the site is required to have at least 25% of the area landscaped and the current plan accounts for 29%. The site also includes a unique feature for the apartment complex's pet owners.

Julie Hendricksen, senior landscape architect at Consilium Design, the site's landscape architect, discussed the innovative design for a dog flushing system. There would be an area with dog turf that has a built-in flushing system for urine with water and biodegradable soap. This would flush and dilute the urine before it enters a drain system.

One of the commission's concerns was the security of the apartment complex's parking garage. Francescon explained that there would be a garage door that is only opened by an access code given to residents or a temporary code for the residents' guests. All retail parking would be out in front of stores.

After all questions and comments from the commission, Commissioner Marissa Harmon read the suggested motion, followed by Floyd reading the conditions of the motion. Commissioner Kyle Adamson seconded it, and the motion passed 5-0. The plan will be proposed to Lone Tree City Council on August 3.

Century Communities expects that if the plan is approved, construction will begin late summer or early fall.

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