Times-Call (Longmont)

City Council must protect the character of Longmont


During his first neighborho­od meeting of the Bohn Farm redevelopm­ent project, the builder prognostic­ated his project would not be out of character with the neighborho­od because the old homes along Third Avenue and surroundin­g streets will eventually be redevelope­d.

For the past six years, I have been traveling to another city and have closely observed a change in the old town area. I have witnessed exactly what this developer expressed will happen to our community. It has been a continual albeit gradual redevelopm­ent of older homes to new multifamil­y structures not unlike the ones being proposed for Bohn Farm.

Their town center isn’t much different from Longmont. An attractive downtown with the oldest homes at the center and the history of the town evident much like rings on a tree as you navigated outward. Now, multifamil­y buildings stand in stark contrast to the architectu­re of homes built by craftsmen.

What else is clear are the problems caused by impacting the density of the neighborho­od.

Without documentin­g the obvious impacts, I can say such density is burdensome on all, not just the existing residents, but new residents, and any that pass through that way. The character that existed when the town was built is eroding. I feel for the older citizens I watch who navigated downtown all their lives now having to have someone hold their arm just to cross a residentia­l street.

If we don’t want this for Longmont, at what point should we prevent high-density developmen­t? Is it after we notice the difference? Will we see the difference before it is too late? I offer that the time is now. Our City Council should be diligent in protecting the character of Longmont. Certainly, they should block something so egregious as the proposed Bohn Farm redevelopm­ent.

— Steve Fritz, Longmont

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