Final GV District 4 Seat Remains Undecided

Update 11/9/17: I misspoke on the recount below. I talked with the city this morning and it is based on 1/2 of 1% of the highest vote getter (I️ thought it was 1%). So the difference needs to be 3 or fewer votes for a recount.

There is still a chance the Vote difference will close between now and Nov 15.

Arapahoe County will update by 4 pm each day.

Twenty-four hours after the polls closed Tuesday night, the second City Council seat for District 4 in Greenwood Village remains undecided.

As of this morning Tom Dougherty held a 7 vote lead over current City Council Member TJ Gordon. Dougherty’s lead has now shrunk to 4 votes, 519 to 515.

According to the GV Municipal Code, an automatic recount occurs if someone doesn’t win by more than 1% of the highest number of votes in the district. Judy Hilton currently has 565 votes, so it appears that a recount is required if someone’s lead is less than 6 votes.

The city has five days to complete the recount, so we are unlikely to know the outcome until next week.

According to the Arapahoe County website, election results will not be certified and final until late November.

Here is a link to the Arapahoe County Election returns: Arapahoe County Election Results< img src=”; height=”579″ class=”wp-image-1061″ width=”1229″>

Challengers upset GV City Council Incumbents

Update: 12:05 am – D4 Candidates Judy Hilton (563 votes), Tom Dougherty (519 votes) and TJ Gordon (512 votes)

Update : 11:05 pm – Judy Hilton maintains her lead over 3rd place candidate TJ Gordon by 50 votes. However, Gordon has narrowed his deficit to only 8 votes behind Tom Daugherty. 

It is a great night for those looking to restore trust in Greenwood Village City Council. (Results are as of the last update at 8:06 pm)

District 1 re-elected Councilman Dave Bullock with 44% of the D1 vote. Jerry Presley was elected with 36%. Incumbent Freda Miklin with just under 20% of the vote will not be re-elected. 

District 2 elected Anne Ingebretsen and Dave Kerber, each with about 30% of the D2 vote.  Darryl Jones was not re-elected (19%). Seanna Mulligan received 16% and Henry Siegel received 5% of the votes. 

George Lantz and Steve Moran were both re-elected after running unopposed in D3. 

District 4 was the tightest race with Judith Hilton receiving 32% and Tom Dougherty receiving 30%. D4 incumbent TJ Gordon is currently in 3rd place and only 22 votes behind Dougherty with 29% of the votes. Jeff Kahn has about 10% of the votes. 

Tom Bishop (D4) and Leslie Schluter (D2) decided against running for re-election. 

Bishop, Schluter, Miklin, Jones and Gordon all voted in favor of the Orchard Station Subarea. On June 6, 76% of voters voted against the proposed high-density Transit-Oriented Development (TOD) amendment to the Village’s Comprehensive Plan. 

GV Council Members question intelligence of Electorate

orchard-station-mapCouncil members Tom Bishop and Leslie Schluter clearly remain angered by the results of the June 6 Orchard Station Special Election.  Four Villager articles published over the last week on Bishop and Schluter strongly state their opinions on Orchard Station and undermine the considerable intelligence of GV voters and the 76% who voted against the Subarea.

Schluter and Bishop, along with Freda Miklin, Darryl Jones and TJ Gordon all VOTED TO ADOPT the Orchard Station Subarea on March 20, 2017 despite knowing that citizens were strongly opposed to the Amendment.  They did not care about legitimate concerns residents had regarding traffic, density, views and schools.

In one article, Tom Bishop states, “In my opinion, we are now left with a misinformed and therefore misguided majority of electorate who are asking their council representatives to lead in ways that will be counterproductive to both their and our city’s interests.” Continue reading

GV City Council punts Century’s Orchard Station project and why it Matters in the City Council Election

Monday night City Council had an opportunity to vote on Century Communities’ high-density Landmark Village residential development in Orchard Station. City council members could have provided clarity and transparency on their positions regarding Orchard Station. They could have begun the City’s healing process after the damaging division they created as a result of the June 6 Special Election. They could have honored the vision that is articulated in the Greenwood Village Comprehensive Plan. They could have said we heard the message sent by 76% of voters loud and clear. 

They didn’t.  

Instead they delayed the issue until December 4 and AFTER the upcoming City Council Election (ballots are being mailed this week). City council members argued that this delay would “de-politicize” their decision. Instead, I believe the decision does exactly the opposite by providing cover to TJ GORDON , FREDA MIKLIN and DARRYL JONES in their efforts to be reelected on November 7. 

Attendees at Monday’s hearing were told TJ Gordon recommended the delay until after the election. 

Twice during the meeting, Century offered to reduce the density in a last ditch effort to turn its $11 million Orchard Station investment into a $160 million development. Century’s application was predicated on the passage of the Orchard Station Subarea Amendment to the Comprehensive Plan. This was City Staff’s conclusion when it reviewed Century’s initial 104-unit Landmark Village application that was withdrawn at the beginning of 2016. 
The Subarea Amendment would have allowed residential and higher-density TOD development (tripling the height restrictions in the Amendment would have tripled the allowable density). 
TJ, Darryl and Freda REFUSED to agree to specific density restrictions requested as part of a compromise effort before the Orchard Station Amendment was sent to the voters in June. 

Century’s final offer Monday night included 161-units (reduced from 189). This would still be over twice the density of Caley Ponds and three-times the density of Marvella (both nearby Century projects). 

Some members of city council argued that residential would be preferred, because it would generate less traffic. That is a true statement. However, residential has its own costs – impact on schools and a significant increases in residences, may also be dilutive to the tax base, city services and potentially home values due to greater supply. 

These issues may not all materialize from a single development like Century’s, but allowing Century’s residential development to proceed creates an important precedent. Alberta Development still owns the Marilyn Hickey property and may continue to have options on additional redevelopment sites in the area. Alberta’s initial development application included almost 1,200 residential units, which would have increased the number of residences in the City by about 20%. If Century gets residential, how can the City deny residential to Alberta?

Allowing the Century residential development would basically tell developers that the City’s Comprehensive Plan doesn’t matter, since it strongly discourages additional residential, except for a limited amount by the Arapahoe Road light rail stop (the “Village Center”).

What will this type of exception to the Comp Plan invite when other areas in the City’s Corridor Area are eventually redeveloped (e.g. the area around Sheplers)?

The city attorney acknowledged last November that the main difference between the existing Comp Plan and the Orchard Station Subarea was that the existing Plan focuses new residential in the Village Center. 

Over and over, city council members supporting Orchard Station said (and continue to say on the campaign trail) that they only wanted to amend the Comp Plan in order to have the opportunity to consider alternative development opportunities beyond commercial office. They have acknowledged repeatedly that the current Comp Plan discourages additional residential. 

So why couldn’t they make a decision on Monday night?

As we know, the vote to amend the Comp Plan on June 6 failed 76% to 24%. However, other than a comment by Councilman Dave Bullock, I don’t believe the Comp Plan was discussed at Monday night’s meeting. 

Why can’t the high-density candidates like TJ, Darryl and Freda be consistent and abide by their previous statements? The attempt to amend the Comp Plan failed on June 6, so to be consistent they shouldn’t have had a very difficult time evaluating Century’s Landmark residential development application. 

Council members had all of the information they needed to make a decision and begin to restore trust on Monday night, but they failed to do so. A significant portion of this process will now start over on December 4, we just don’t know how much – what a waste of time for City Staff and residents. 

When you cast your ballots for a new City Council, please consider the damage caused by current Council’s actions on Orchard Station and Monday’s decision to continue to prevent transparency and protect the vision of Greenwood Village. 

Thank you – Randy

City Council punts Century’s Orchard Station application to December 4, after GV City Council Election

City council has kicked the Orchard Station can down the road to December 4. Waiting until after the new Greenwood Village City Council has been elected. 

Century came to tonight’s meeting trying to gain city council support, by offering to reduce the 189-unit high-density residential development by 10%. After some questions by city council Century further agreed to reduce the number of units by another 10-units to a total of 161-units. This is still 55% larger than its original 104-unit development. 

City council then closed the public hearing and met in Executive Session for over an hour to receive legal advice. 

When city council returned the decision was made to continue the application to December 4 when a new city council will be elected. It was stated that city council would have to reopen public comment, but since the city council will not have heard the new case, there is some speculation the process will need to start over. 

The concerns regarding compliance with the Comprehensive Plan (currently residential is highly discouraged around Orchard Station) were almost entirely ignored during the meeting. Dave Bullock raised the issue during his comments, but I don’t believe anyone else mentioned the issue. 

TJ Gordon recommended the delay until after the election. This means Mr. Gordon, Freda Miklin and Darryl Jones can all continue use their reelection campaigns without having to take a stance on another high density Orchard Station development. 

Despite Leslie Schluter’s blatant politically motivated motion, Century Communities’ case continued to October 16

City Council last night held a public hearing regarding Century Communities’ high-density residential Orchard Station development application. The Development is being called Landmark Village. 

In a purely political move, Leslie Schluter made a motion to continue Century’s application to November 6. Not coincidentally, November 6 is the night before the Greenwood Village City Council elections, at which point the large majority, if not most, of GV voters will have returned their mail-in ballots.  

Unfortunately for Ms. Schluter and other supporters of high-density Transit Oriented Development (TOD), the motion failed by a vote of 5-4. 

The Mayor broke the tie and voted no. Leslie Schluter, Freda Miklin, Darryl Jones and Tom Bishop all voted in favor of delaying the Landmark Village Vote until the eve of the city council election. These four city council members all voted IN FAVOR of the Orchard Station Subarea. 

Dave Bullock, George Lantz and Steve Moran voted against Ms. Schluter’s motion. TJ Gordon, who voted for Orchard Station, voted against the continuance to November 6. 

TJ Gordon (District 4), Freda Miklin (District 1) and Darryl Jones (District 2) are all running for reelection in contested elections and all SUPPORTED the Orchard Station Subarea. 

Seanna Mulligan also supported the Orchard Station Subarea and is running for Leslie Schluter’s seat in District 2. Seanna has spoken in support of high-density development and was a member of Alberta Development’s Yes for Greenwood Village issue committee that flooded GV homes with Orchard Station propaganda during the June special election. 

Judy Hilton (District 4), Dave Kerber (District 2), Anne Ingebretsen (District 2), Jerry Presley (District 1) and Dave Bullock (District 1) have all been endorsed by Save Our Village and were vocally OPPOSED to the high-density TOD development envisioned in the Orchard Station Subarea. 

Jeff Kahn is also running for City Council in District 4 and spoke against the high-density Century Communities’ development. 

Tom Dougherty is the final candidate in District 4, but to my knowledge, has not taken a public position on Orchard Station. 

Steve Moran and George Lantz, who both voted against the Orchard Station Subarea, are also running for reelection in District 3, but are unopposed. 

Ultimately, City Council continued the Century Communities hearing until Oct. 16. Darryl Jones asked to reopen the public hearing to give Century a chance to address the density and open space concerns. 

Century’s residential development application was contingent on the passage of the Orchard Station Subarea (which failed in the June 6 Special Election 76% to 24%). The Orchard Station Subarea would have encouraged high-density residential and mixed-use, whereas the current Comprehensive Plan strongly discourages additional residential, except for a limited amount of residential in the Village Center (next to the Arapahoe Road light rail stop). 

We will see what happens on October 16 and if City Council finally agrees to listen to the people. 

P&Z does not recommend Century’s Landmark Village

By a 6-1 vote Greenwood Village Planning & Zoning reached the right conclusion and failed to recommend Century Communities’ high density 189-unit Landmark Village residential development proposal to City Council. The affirmative motion was worded to “not recommend” the development application.  Jon Ekoniak was the sole P&Z commissioner who voted against the motion. Commissioner Steve Goldman was absent. 

The proposed application sits on 13.1 acres in the formerly proposed Orchard Station Subarea. The hotly contested Subarea that would have encouraged transit oriented development (TOD) including high density residential, retail and office was overwhelming defeated 76% to 24% in the June 6 Special Election. 

Century’s current 189-unit application is the result of comments received from City Council during review of its initial 104-unit application in 2015/2016. Those comments on February 22, 2016 suggested that the 104-unit proposal did not conform with the vision for the Orchard Station Subarea and high density TOD. Consequently, Century withdrew the initial application and came back with almost twice the density to address the comments received from City Council. 

Since P&Z is only a recommending body, the Century application will still move to city council at a date to be determined. 

UPDATE: Century’s Orchard Station development application has been moved from the August 15 P&Z meeting to September 5

Per an update to the August 15 P&Z agenda, Century Communities’ high-density residential Landmark Village development application has been moved to the September 5 meeting. 

Century’s application is in direct conflict to the existing Comprehensive Plan that 76% of voters chose to maintain in the June 6 Special Election. 

Read my letter to the City here

On August 15, 2017 Greenwood Village P&Z should promptly Reject Century Communities Orchard Station Development Application

Landmark Village

On August 15, 2017 Greenwood Village Planning & Zoning will hold a public hearing to hear public comment and deliberate its recommendation to City Council on Century Communities’ Landmark Village development proposal in Orchard Station. Note: Century completely ignored public opinion by submitting this application one day after the June 6 GV Special Election.  The June 6 election by a 3-to-1 margin defeated the proposed Orchard Station Subarea that was required to make this development compatible with the City’s Comprehensive Plan.

Here is my letter to city officials expressing why this application should be rejected.

Dear Members of City Council, Planning and Zoning and Community Development:

This letter serves as my STRONG OPPOSITION to the development application submitted by Century Communities on Wednesday, June 7, 2017 to develop 191 residential townhomes and single-family homes on 13-acres in the FORMERLY proposed Orchard Station Subarea. Continue reading