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Plans For Tall Buildings In Cherry Creek Upset Some Residents

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A proposed building in Cherry Creek North (credit: CBS)

A proposed building in Cherry Creek North (credit: CBS)

DENVER (CBS4) – There’s a fight over building seven, eight and even 12 story high rises in Denver’s Cherry Creek North neighborhood.

Jim Sullivan, the developer of one proposed building in the neighborhood, wouldn’t talk on camera on Monday, saying he’ll wait until after a vote on Tuesday, but believes Cherry Creek is changing.

Across the street from Sullivan’s proposed building the block already approved to go up to eight stories high. Sullivan says the neighborhood has a point of view, and he has a point of view, but the city council will make the decision.

“You can walk to restaurants, you can walk to banks, you can walk to gyms — everything,” said Gene Hohensee, President of the Cherry Creek North Neighborhood Association.

It’s the charm of Cherry Creek North. The folks who live there want to preserve it with a new neighbor, High Density Development, starting to move in. The 200 block of Columbine Street was recently approved for the eight-story building. Across the street, 245 Columbine could soon become a seven-story complex of retail, residential and offices if council members give its developer the green light.

“We are concerned that over-development, not smart development, is going to take place,” Hohensee said.

The Cherry Creek North Neighborhood Association is making their voices heard, and Chris Murata is as well. The 20-year resident is concerned that high-density development will bring a traffic nightmare to the neighborhood.

“In general traffic will begin going down our streets instead of down in the neighborhood because as it is now, I don’t believe that First Avenue and Josephine and York can handle the traffic that these building are going to bring. Same with the one at Steele,” Murata said.

At First and Steele is another proposed project waiting for city council’s decision. It’s a 12-story apartment complex.

Council members say all last year they approved the new Cherry Creek plan, which is a guideline to update zoning from four-stories to eight or more in certain areas if the council approves it.

“It seems like their goal is to create a Rodeo Drive in this area, rather than keep it to the smaller scale and the friendly neighborhood it was,” Murata said.

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