How California’s “Sleeping Giant” Woke Up and Won Statewide Rent Caps
Rent laws are typically the domain of local governments. But in February, Oregon became the first state in the nation to adopt a statewide rent-cap law. The new California law, called the Tenant Protection Act, is stronger. It limits annual rent increases to 5 percent a year plus the consumer price index, but no more than 10 percent annually. It also includes a groundbreaking provision requiring landlords to have a “just cause” when evicting a tenant, such as failing to pay rent or damaging the property.
Mobile Home Oversight from the Division of Housing
HB19-1309 was signed into law by Governor Polis on May 23, which provides protections for mobile home owners by giving the Department of Local Affairs, Division of Housing (DOH) the authority to take complaints, conduct investigations, make determinations, impose penalties, and intervene in instances where there are potential violations. To assist with the implementation of the Mobile Home Park Act Dispute Resolution and Enforcement Program, DOH will undergo a public rulemaking process and is soliciting input from interested parties.
Introducing the Department of Housing Stability (HOST)
In June Denver Mayor Hancock announced a new department that will better align strategies and resources to address housing challenges across the entire housing continuum. “We are taking steps this fall to create the new Department of Housing Stability (HOST), bringing together the work of Denver Economic Development & Opportunity’s (DEDO) Housing Division, Denver’s Road Home, and other components into a new standalone department.” Britta Fisher, currently the Chief Housing Officer for Denver Economic Development & Opportunity (DEDO), will be leading HOST as it formally launches January 1, 2020. “The new name reflects our goal to provide housing stability for all those who wish to call Denver home. HOST will bring together the city’s work along the housing continuum, from residents experiencing homelessness, to those seeking to find new housing opportunities, and to people stabilizing in homes in which they already live,” Fisher said.
Denver announces plans for 3 miles of Broadway bike and bus lanes
A city study found that automobiles’ travel times were only a few seconds slower after the change. The final project will include a “small reduction” to on-street automobile parking and an increase to bike and scooter parking. It won’t affect permitted parking for neighborhoods.
“The purpose of this document is to give us in the district a consolidated view of what we’d like to direct that collaboration toward the benefit of,” Deffenbaugh says.
New Study Tackles RiNo’s Sucky Transit, Parking, Pedestrian Infrastructure
The study lays out eyebrow-raising statistics about an area whose population has definitely outgrown its transit infrastructure. About 20,050 people are now employed in RiNo but don’t live in the area; only 476 people employed there actually live in the district. An Uber or Lyft stops near the intersection of Larimer and 27th streets an average of every 88 seconds on Fridays. And while there are 18,078 parking spaces, 71 percent are restricted from the public.
Denver City Council Member Amanda Sawyer reports that Denver Public Works officially halted a project that had been assessing the impacts of widening Quebec Street to four lanes from 13th to 26th Avenues. This decision was made due to three main factors:
- The anticipated cost of the project exceeded the available funding
Many homes would need to be condemned and bulldozed which would decrease the number of moderately prices homes in the area
- Widening roads has been shown to have a significant detrimental impact on the environment
- The revised project will focus on meeting community priorities – including the addition of sidewalks, more reliable transit, and improved transit stops – with minimal impact to adjacent properties.
Reimagining CDOT’s Transit Amenities
The Department plans to re-envision the traditional park-n-ride transit stations into mobility hubs by creating transportation centers which emphasize multimodal options, seamless mode-to-mode transitions, real-time passenger information, and convenience.
Welcome to the RTD News Stop – your one-stop shop for news, facts, features and all you need to know about Denver’s Regional Transportation District. RTD runs one of the largest mass transit systems in the United States with a service area that spans eight counties and three million people. There’s a lot to communicate, and we want to make sure we keep everyone informed and up-to-speed on the latest RTD news and important decisions.
Opening date for N Line moves to May or August of 2020
Remaining milestones on Regional Transportation District (RTD)’s newest commuter rail line, the N Line, will move the project’s opening date to next May or August, General Manager and CEO Dave Genova told the transit agency’s Board of Directors. In an informational update about the project – which will serve riders traveling between Denver and Adams County, Commerce City, Northglenn and Thornton – Genova acknowledged that specific milestones still must be met before an opening date can be determined. These include turnover of the project from contractor Regional Rail Partners (RRP) to RTD and advanced testing elements such as grade crossings and positive train control (PTC). RTD had previously stated that its goal was to open the rail line during the first quarter of 2020.
RTD hosts telephone town halls to discuss projects, gather feedback
The Regional Transportation District (RTD) wants to keep the community informed about current projects, provide updates for the region and answer questions from participants. To do that, the agency is hosting a series of hourlong telephone town halls in October for each of the 15 districts in its service area.
Introducing Reimagine RTD
RTD has launched Reimagine RTD, a two-year effort to understand and forecast the changing transportation needs of our region, and we want your input. We plan to listen and learn how we can change the way our region moves. And, we will explore, our current transit system and how it serves our customers, investigate new technologies and private transportation options, and evaluate funding opportunities to address changing travel needs to enhance the customer experience.
City of Denver’s Annual Commuter Survey
Denver City Council Members Amanda Sawyer, Jolon Clark and Kendra Black encourage you to take the City of Denver’s Annual Commuter Survey. Building a more equitable, safe, and sustainable transportation network is a top goal for the City and County of Denver. They have committed to improving our transportation system and are interested in knowing how you travel and how they could serve you better.
Denver City Council Member Paul Kashmann reports that Kentro Group continues to refine its development plans for both the 13-acre former CDOT Headquarters site at Arkansas Ave. and S. Birch St. and the 11-acre former CDOT Region 1 site at 2000 S Holly St. The Arkansas/Birch site will be a mix of affordable and market rate housing, retail space and commercial uses. The Holly St. property is slated to house some 190 3-story, for sale, market rate townhouses on about 10-acres, and has submitted an application for state tax credits to facilitate construction of about 60 units of affordable senior housing on the northern portion of the site. The tax credits sought are limited in availability. Should the application not be successful, Kentro may shift the senior housing focus to a retail or office medical use. Meanwhile a site development plan for horizontal improvements has been submitted to the City, with a goal of beginning construction in 2020.
Denver City Council Member Kendra Black reports that Denver-based Forum Real Estate Group purchased the former K-Mart property at the SEC Evans/Monaco and is exploring different redevelopment opportunities to add to this area’s appeal. “We are excited to be able to obtain this fantastic location, centrally-located and minutes from downtown Denver, University of Denver, and the bustling Denver Tech Center Corridor,” stated Kevin Foltz, Managing Director of Development at Forum Real Estate Group. “We are working with Councilwoman Black and local planners to explore ways we can benefit the surrounding community and offer something new and exciting to area residents.” Other Forum projects include Kent Place at University & Hampden and the Veranda at I-25 & Hampden.
Denver City Council Member Kendra Black reports the High Line Canal celebrated a major milestone with the completion of the High Line Canal Framework Plan. Our team, alongside our design partners, have reimaged this cultural and historic infrastructure asset as an open space amenity for the next 100 years. The Livable Cities team has been working with the High Line Canal Conservancy and other partners for two years to map a detailed path forward for this unique urban greenway. This 71-mile long, 100-foot wide corridor stretches across the Metro Denver region touching 13 different jurisdictions. Historically utilized as a water source for irrigation, the canal is no longer valued for this purpose and has become a cherished recreational outlet in the midst of a busy urban area. The Plan imagines new uses focused on storm water management, community recreation, and stewardship. Thanks to the tremendous leadership of the High Line Conservancy, and the many community partners involved, this plan sets the stage for a major transition for this water management asset stretching across the Metro Denver region.
Get ready for 500 new 30-foot-tall cell poles around Denver’s neighborhoods
Today, it’s nearly impossible to build large new facilities. Additionally, high-speed 5G service will require transmitters to be deployed for individual blocks. So the industry is infiltrating neighborhoods with 30-foot-tall metal poles, and companies also are retrofitting power and light poles.
MOBILITY AND REAL ESTATE from the LinkedIn Group at http://www.linkedin.com/groups/4760558/
Incredible demolition project restoring the Seattle waterfront and replacing US Highway 99 viaduct with a tunnel.
Seven Ways Telecommuting Has Changed Real Estate
In a survey last year of 23,000 new home shoppers, John Burns Real Estate Consulting, a firm with offices across the country, found that roughly 30 percent worked at home between one and four days a week; 13 percent worked at home full time…The rise in remote work is already changing people’s preferences in single-family home and apartment design, and affording them greater freedom in choosing where and how to live. Here are seven ways in which the trend is changing the housing market.
Who’s afraid of the pedestrian mall?
Fulton Mall’s success offers clues as to why only two dozen of 200 pedestrian malls remain from the boom a half century ago. The future of the pedestrian mall is not in trying to save downtown merchants by bringing new shoppers in, but in improving the experience for the shoppers who are already there. To start with, this means not disdaining the people spending money, especially when downtown stores historically served a broad racial and economic spectrum.
As always with urban design, there are multiple social, economic, and design factors at play in the success of shopping districts, which is why raising pedestrian malls as a boogeyman doesn’t make sense in the first place. But three factors stand out: foot traffic, anything-but-car access, and amenities beyond retail.
Affordable Housing on Transit Land
It turns out that transit agencies have a lot to gain from affordable housing. Transit providers are often major landowners in their communities, controlling underutilized properties like park-and-ride lots or leftover pieces of land from the construction of a new project, or storage and maintenance facilities. These sites are also opportunities to provide desperately needed affordable housing, which in turn creates increased ridership from residents and visitors, as well as additional revenue.
Self-Driving Cars Are Out. Micromobility Is In
But between March and November, everything changed. No longer does anyone credibly claim that self-driving cars are the future of transportation, and Uber has even shifted its focus to scooters, e-bikes, and turning its app into the “Amazon for transportation.” At the beginning of 2018, it would have been unimaginable for the CEO of Waymo to publicly acknowledge that self-driving cars will never work in all conditions. Now, it’s a statement of fact that anyone familiar with the industry already knows. But while the hype about self-driving cars is over, there’s a new vision for urban transportation that’s much more inspiring—and everyone seems to want in on it.
Why Driverless Cars Will Mostly Be Shared, Not Owned
When will you be able to buy a driverless car that will work anywhere? This commonly asked question contains three assumptions: that autonomous vehicles (AVs) will resemble cars; that people will buy them; and that they will be capable of working on all roads in all conditions. All three of those assumptions may be wrong.
Ford’s radical new corporate campus is a glimpse into its future
The firm’s plan for Ford, shared exclusively with Fast Company, signals a serious departure from midcentury thinking. The biggest fundamental shift is that the new Ford campus will eliminate a vast majority of its parking lots, which currently take up a whopping 40% of the 350-acre campus. The new design calls for parking and drop-off areas to take up just 8% of campus real estate. That one change creates a domino effect in the design that opens opportunities for increasing energy efficiency and green space.
First and foremost, reducing the amount of parking lots means that buildings, once separated by expansive asphalt, can be bundled closer together. This turns the once-drivable campus into a newly walkable one.
Parking Reform Will Save the City
When The High Cost of Free Parking was published in 2005, half the city planning profession thought I was crazy and the other half thought I was daydreaming. Since then, several cities—including Buffalo, Hartford, Minneapolis, and San Francisco—have removed all their parking requirements, and many others have removed requirements in their downtowns. Mexico City has converted its minimum parking requirements into maximum parking limits while leaving the numbers almost unchanged. What once seemed politically impossible may slowly become the new normal.
Drones Are Finally Coming to Retail Delivery
Wing is the first drone operator which has been approved for delivery by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). The effort in Christianburg is considered a pilot program to help understand how drones might be rolled out in more cities. Walgreens customers will be able to select from more than 100 products or six pre-selected “packs” for delivery…The location for the test was picked because Christianburg is close to Virginia Tech, where Wing has been testing its drones since 2016. Walgreens noted that 78% of the U.S. population lives within five miles of one of its stores, making it an ideal candidate for eventually bringing drones nationwide.
Tesla May Have Invented a Million-Mile Electric Car Battery
Leading battery researchers in the United States and Europe, while uncertain about the cost of the Tesla system, say a new academic paper describing the million-mile battery is rigorous and convincing. “The results are spectacular,” said Gerbrand Ceder, a professor of materials science at University of California, Berkeley.
The paper, co-authored by Jeff Dahn, a professor at Dalhousie University in Canada, who is on contract with Tesla, suggests a substantial advance for driverless taxis, buses, and semi-trucks that can recharge in roughly 20 minutes, along with electric grid batteries boasting two-decade lifespans. These are among the greatest ambitions of the new electric age, and a new lithium-ion battery that does what Dahn describes would go far in reviving Musk’s reputation for mastery of applied cutting-edge technology.