The East Colfax Neighborhood Association has chosen to pause the development of its long-term community vision, citing a preference to return to in-person meetings after the danger of COVID-19 has passed.
“As by far the most populous and the most socioeconomically diverse of the four neighborhoods in the East Area Plan,” wrote the group in an email, “the East Colfax Neighborhood Association must insist that the Neighborhood Planning Initiative and those working on the East Area Plan put the process on hold as our communities struggle through the massive health and economic impacts of COVID-19.”
The association's boundaries are Quebec Street and Yosemite Street west to east, and generally Montview Boulevard and East 11th Avenue to the north and south.
The plan, which is years in the making, will include land use recommendations to guide future zoning decisions. Among its goals are keeping current residents in the community through increased availability of affordable housing, and enhancing safety by slowing traffic, completing sidewalks and creating separated bike lanes.
Currently, there are 14,661 households in the area, and one-third are paying in excess of 30% of their income toward housing. The plan calls for preserving the current architecture of buildings while allowing for duplexes, triplexes and accessory dwelling units. Public review of the first draft began in March of this year, and the city council will ultimately adopt the East Area Plan.
Laura Swartz, communications director for the Community Planning and Development Department, said the city hopes to unveil an updated draft plan later this year.
"This work is happening at a critical time for our communities when residents and small businesses are grappling with the impacts of COVID-19 as well as even more challenging and long-term issues around involuntary displacement, housing affordability and access to opportunity," she said. "This draft plan includes much-needed policy recommendations and directions aimed at these issues and more."
This story has been updated with additional information from Community Planning and Development.