MDR land use change fails to meet the Urban Services Criteria
In the Boulder Valley Comprehensive Plan, Section VI Urban Service Criteria and Standards outlines the “minimum requirements or thresholds for facilities and services that must be delivered to existing urban development, or new development and redevelopment to be considered adequate. These adequacy standards allow the county to determine if an urban level of services is met prior to approving new urban development in the unincorporated area.”
Put more simply: “A basic premise of the Boulder Valley Comprehensive Plan is that ‘adequate urban facilities and services’ are a prerequisite for new urban development.”
One of the required urban services for “Developed Urban Parks” is that there are “neighborhood parks of a minimum of five acres in size within one-half mile of the population to be served.”
The Twin Lakes parcels fail to meet this urban services standard. There is not a 5-acre developed urban park within one-half mile of the Twin Lakes fields.
The developed section of Eaton Park is only 1.5 acres large. It consists of an advanced BMX track and a sheltered picnic table.
The remaining acres are undevelopable because they are a Habitat Preserve. This area consists of wetlands, grassland for native birds, and small rolling hills. Granted, construction debris lies under those tiny hills, but OSMP’s own interpretative sign (at right) shows how they are important to wildlife.
Residents cherish the wildlife preserved in this area. In fact, Eaton Park is one of the last places in Boulder County to see fireflies at night! So they agree with this area being preserved as wild land.
At the same time, residents strongly object to losing the open spaces that they do have through MDR/MXR land use changes. The north field was intended to be a community park and the south field a school and kids’ park. The 2010 BVCP shows the Existing Land Use as Public/Semi-public. MDR cannot be granted for these parcels because the urban services criteria for developed parks hasn’t been met.
Cross-jurisdictional impact: Urban growth would be added even when the required urban services criteria and standards haven’t been meet.