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Friday, July 1, 2022
This e-newsletter is designed to provide information regarding city programs and services, and those of its agency partners. The Littleton City Council and staff encourage supporting Littleton businesses and community programs.

In this issue...

City Offices Closed July 4 

In honor of the Independence Day holiday, all city offices will be closed on Monday, July 4, including the Littleton Center, Littleton Museum and Bemis Public Library. 

Independence Day Celebration Goes on Without Fireworks
US Flag design with text "4th of July Celebration, Cornerstone & Belleview Parks from 1 p.m. to 6 p.m., food trucks, vendors, face painting, music & more, no personal fireworks will be allowed at the event"
Due to ongoing drought conditions and predictions of an above average hot and dry summer forecast, event organizers made the difficult decision to cancel fireworks for the 2022 Family Festival and Fireworks Show at Cornerstone and Belleview Parks. 

The cities of Englewood, Littleton, Sheridan, along with Arapahoe County and South Suburban Parks and Recreation, are moving forward with an enhanced 4th of July Celebration with fun for the entire family. The event will be held at Cornerstone and Belleview Parks on July 4 from 1 to 6 p.m. It will feature food trucks, vendors, face painting, music, and more! No personal fireworks will be allowed at the event. 

Activities include DJs, face painters, balloon artists, bubble towers, lawn games, food trucks, and vendors.
  • Batting cages at Cornerstone Park will be open
  • Colorado Journey Miniature Golf open until 7 p.m.
  • Extended hours for Belleview Park Farm & Train: 9:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. (Closed 12:30 to 1:30 p.m. for break for staff and animals)
Click here for more details on the Independence Day celebration.
What is going on at Aspen Grove?

Image of Aspen Grove Shopping Center outside on a sunny afternoonThe Aspen Grove shopping center at the northwest corner of Mineral Avenue and South Santa Fe Drive opened in 2001 and is home to numerous large and small businesses.  

In 2021, Aspen Grove owners the Gerrity Group, filed an application with the City of Littleton to amend the property’s Planned Development (PD) zoning to allow for redevelopment into a mixed-use residential and commercial development.  

Gerrity’s proposal requested approval of up to 2,500 residential dwelling units in buildings with a maximum allowable height of 85 feet. The proposal was sent to the city’s Planning Commission, which approved the request with a condition that the number of residential units be decreased to 2,000. The proposal was then sent to city council, which approved it in November 2021. 

 A citizens’ group circulated a petition to ask voters to consider the project. The petition received more than 3,700 signatures, qualifying it for the November 2022 ballot. This prompted city officials to suspend approval of Gerrity Group’s 2021 proposal until the election is held. 

In October 2021, city council unanimously approved the Unified Land Use Code (ULUC), which modernizes Littleton’s land use and zoning. The ULUC created a new zone district in Littleton: Corridor Mixed Use (CMU), which allows mixed residential/commercial development along major transportation corridors including Santa Fe Drive, Broadway, Belleview Avenue, and part of Littleton Boulevard.  

Under the terms of this new code that was developed over several years, Gerrity Group submitted a new Master Development Plan (MDP) for Aspen Grove in May 2022, with a greatly reduced proposal for 481 residential dwelling units and a maximum allowable height of 80 feet. 

Click here to view the new MDP proposal. 

The new proposal requests Planning Commission remove the site’s current PD zoning, which is a custom set of zoning rules, and allow the site to revert to the “underlying” CMU zoning created by the ULUC. The Planning Commission is scheduled to hold a public hearing on the request July 25. 

If Planning Commission approves the request, Gerrity Group will have approval to build the newer proposal with fewer dwelling units. The ballot question arising from the citizen petition will remain on the ballot in November regardless of Planning Commission’s decision. If the Planning Commission approves the new MDP proposal, the results of the ballot question would be moot.  

The ULUC, which created the new CMU zone district, was built on years of public outreach through the Envision Littleton process. Envision formed the foundation of the city’s Comprehensive Plan, ratified by city council in 2019.  

The Envision process called for the creation of more than 6,500 new housing units in Littleton in coming decades to meet local and regional demand. The ULUC allows for greater housing density along transit corridors as opposed to established older neighborhoods. 

Though the citizens’ petition regarding Aspen Grove garnered 3,700 signatures, the greater Littleton population has also spoken: both the Comprehensive Plan and ULUC were passed following an extensive public engagement process and unanimously approved by the city council, the elected representatives of the citizens.  

Why does Littleton need more housing?

Housing prices in Littleton have climbed far faster than wages in recent decades. The 2020 revised housing study found that the number of young families in Littleton is declining in the face of high housing prices.   

Read the revised housing study’s findings here. 

Public outreach as part of the Envision process consistently found that residents are eager for their children and grandchildren to be able to live in Littleton and want a variety of housing options as their needs change.  

While no single housing development can solve the broader issue of housing affordability regionally, adding housing inventory allows Littleton to continue to be a welcoming community. 

What is the financial impact of this project? 

Aspen Grove’s owners are interested in the long-term viability of their development. The retail environment has changed substantially since Aspen Grove was built 21 years ago. The shift to online shopping has left many brick-and-mortar retailers struggling. 

Many shopping centers are looking at the prospect of incorporating residential units. There are many successful examples around the Denver area, including Southglenn in Centennial, and Belmar in Lakewood. 

Residential development doesn’t pay for itself. Littleton draws the vast majority of its general fund revenue from sales tax, not property tax. But the city is interested in commercial development that is more sustainable and less subject to the ups-and-downs of the market.  

How will this project affect traffic?  

The intersection of Mineral Avenue and South Santa Fe Drive has caused drivers headaches for years. The City of Littleton is a key partner in the Santa Fe Drive Action Plan – A PEL Study, which is creating a series of projects to improve traffic conditions along Santa Fe.  

Littleton is moving forward with plans to create a quad-road interchange at the intersection, which is projected to increase its capacity by up to 30% and decrease the length of the traffic backup at Mineral Avenue by more than 90%. 

Read more about the Quad Road here. 

The Aspen Grove development would be designed to give residents easy access to the Mineral Light Rail station. 

Littleton Hosts Visiting African Delegation
Photo of 23 members of the delegation smiling and posing as a group in front of Town Hall Arts Center.
Littleton officials led delegates from 19 African countries on a tour of Main Street June 24, part of an international fellowship program to strengthen peace, prosperity, and democratic governance in Africa.

Economic Development Director Cindie Perry walked through downtown with visitors from the Mandela Washington Fellowship, a program of the U.S. State Department and administered locally by the University of Colorado Denver. Fellows selected by the program visit the United States for academic and leadership training.

"It was humbling to host this very special delegation that had a diverse background ranging from nonprofits, civic leadership, engineering, communications, and health care," Perry said. "We provided a historic Downtown Littleton tour that touched on the importance of nonprofits and municipalities working together, how city infrastructure plays a role in development and tourism, and how Littleton values its character and strives to support its businesses."

Visiting delegates were impressed by Littleton, in particular a visit to Town Hall Arts Center.

"Everyone has embraced us so warmly here," said Rafaela Andrade from Mozambique. "People are respectful and helpful, and it feels very safe. I’m impressed by what nonprofits have been able to achieve. Littleton is a beautiful city."
Downtown Historic Walking Tour Friday, July 1
Dramatically lit photo of Town Hall Arts Center at night.
The next historic walking tour of Downtown Littleton will be held Friday, July 1.

Tour guides from Historic Littleton Inc. share the stories of downtown’s marvelous architecture and characters from the city’s past.

For those who can't make it today, two tours will be held during Western Welcome Week on Friday, August 19 at 5 and 6 p.m. The final tour of the summer will be held September 2. 

Tours meet at 6 p.m. on the steps of the Littleton Municipal Courthouse at 2069 West Littleton Boulevard. 

Tours are free, but donations are appreciated. Reservations are not required.

Click here for more information on downtown walking tours.
Celebrate Independence Day Pioneer Style at Littleton Museum
Old fashioned image of eagle and Liberty Bell with information on the event. "Join us to celebrate an 1800s Independence Day on Saturday, July 2nd, 10 o'clock until 3 o'clock at the Littleton museum"
Celebrate Independence Day pioneer-style at the Littleton Museum's living history farms! Cheer the American spirit of friendly competition with an 1860s "base ball" game featuring the Littleton Rough & Readies vintage baseball team! 

There will also be historical interpreters, games for kids, educational events about life during the Revolutionary War, and lots more! There is no charge for admission and reservations are not required.

When: 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., Saturday, July 2. Baseball game from 10 a.m to noon. 

Where: Littleton Museum, 6028 South Gallup Street

Click here for more information about the Littleton Museum’s Independence Day celebration.
Denver Water Announces Goddard-Area Repair Project
Denver Water is starting a water main replacement project in the Goddard neighborhood that will replace over 13,000 linear feet of aging water mains underneath the road. Crews do not anticipate encountering any lead service lines as part of this project. 

Work will begin this week and is expected to last through spring 2023. Denver Water will make every attempt to complete this project within the stated timeframe; however, as with any construction project, unforeseen circumstances, such as weather conditions, material shortages, and crew availability may extend completion of work. Emergency work may also take priority. Working hours are typically Monday-Friday, 7:30 a.m.-5:30 p.m. Some night or weekend work may be required.

Denver Water mailed notifications to residents in the neighborhood. Door hangers will also be delivered to impacted properties closer to the start of construction and before any planned water outages. In addition, Denver Water will provide periodic updates via social media platform Nextdoor. Contact Denver Water Customer Care at 303-893-2444 for more information.

Click here for an interactive map of the project.
Tickets On Sale for Arapahoe County Fair, July 28-31
Photo of carnival rides lit up at night and the text "Bring on the fun!" with county fair logo.
Tickets are on sale for the 2022 Arapahoe County Fair, July 28 to 31!

The Arapahoe County Fair is a beloved community tradition that showcases the county’s agricultural and Western heritage through 4-H programming, traditional agricultural activities, and tons of entertainment. It is an incredible value for families looking for a full day of laughter and good wholesome fun.

Included in the price of fair admission: unlimited carnival rides, rodeos, fireworks, main stage concerts, tractor pulls, Dock Dogs, public competitions, 4-H livestock shows, and numerous other activities. Food, beverages, and vendors will be abundant throughout the Fairgrounds.

In addition, the craft brew festival—now called Pours on the Plains—is back by popular demand and will be held Friday evening July 29. This separate ticketed event will feature more than a dozen Colorado breweries and is guaranteed to be a hoppin’ time.

Location: Arapahoe County Fairgrounds and Park, 25690 East Quincy Avenue, Aurora

Tickets: $20 general admission, parking included

Click here for more information about the Arapahoe County Fair.
Local Partnership Funding Grant Applications Open Soon
Each year the Littleton City Council considers requests for discretionary grants, historically from nonprofit organizations that serve Littleton residents, and determines the grants during the budget process. This is a competitive process as council always receives more requests than it has funds available. Individual awards are capped at $25,000.

The 2023 Local Partnership Funding applications will be available beginning July 11. The application deadline is August 8, and awards will be distributed in January 2023.

Click here for guidelines on Local Partnership Funding.
Littleton is Hiring
This week's featured jobs:

Project Manager (Capital Improvement Projects) The City of Littleton is looking for an experienced Project Manager to lead and manage citywide capital improvement projects from planning to completion. This is a great opportunity for an individual with strong communication skills and experience with the RFP process, evaluating bids, and coordination of vendors and contractors.   

Human Resources Director The City of Littleton is seeking a dynamic, people-focused, visionary leader to be the next Human Resources Director. Serving as a member of the City of Littleton Leadership Team, the Human Resources Director has responsibility for implementing council goals as well as ongoing work related to implementing culture and engagement activities related to recently established citywide values.   

Senior Transportation Planner This is an exciting opportunity for a Senior Transportation Planner to lead and/or participate in a variety of local and regional transportation planning activities, including transportation master plans, comprehensive plans, corridor and streetscape studies, bicycle and pedestrian plans, and long-range capital plans. The Senior Transportation Planner will represent and promote the city’s interests with local, state, and federal agencies on regional transportation planning, and will facilitate community outreach efforts and represent the city on technical and policy advisory groups.   

Utility Operator I, II, III, or Lead The Utility Operator performs skilled work in the operation of vehicles and equipment to maintain and repair sanitary sewer collection and storm drainage utility systems. The ideal candidate has good computer skills and is mechanical minded and adept at using a variety of tools, equipment, and vehicles.  

Visit the City of Littleton careers page to view all current job openings.
Happening at Bemis Public Library
Exterior of library from front
Music for Kids
Eric West and a trunk filled with homemade treasures, unusual instruments, puppets, and lumberjacks accompany his fun, original songs. For families with children ages 3 and up. 11 a.m. to noon, Monday, July 5.

Finger Knitting Fun
Learn to finger knit a fuzzy animal friend to keep. For children entering grades 1 through 5. Registration required. Call 303-795-3961 to register beginning June 30. 2 to 3 p.m., Thursday July 7.

Concert: The Ballad of America
Join the library for an afternoon of classic American tunes from all eras, performed by award-winning accordionist Ron Tomocik. For all ages. 2 to 3 p.m., Saturday, July 9.

Thank you for reading this issue of the Littleton Report Online
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