Friday, September 20, 2019

Public has chance to give input on Center for Arts expansion

Formal application expected in January

by Mark Reaman

Members of the public will have a chance to comment on the proposed Crested Butte Center for the Arts expansion this Tuesday, November 17. Two public work sessions are scheduled for the coming week with the Board of Zoning and Architectural Review (BOZAR).

The first meeting will be held Tuesday, November 17 from 6 to 8 p.m. A follow-up hearing will be held Wednesday, November 18 from 6 to 7:30 p.m. According to Crested Butte town planner Michael Yerman, “Tuesday night there will be a presentation from the Center and then public input will be taken. On Wednesday there will be an informal dialogue between the applicant and BOZAR on how the preliminary designs can incorporate public comment. There will be a link to review all the plans and submittals from the center on the town’s website under the projects tab. This will be posted on Friday and updated the Friday before future meetings.”

Yerman made it clear there would be no decisions made about the project at either meeting. “This is a work session and there will be no formal decisions. It is intended to allow the public and BOZAR to provide initial feedback to the Center’s architectural team prior to a formal submittal that we anticipate in January,” Yerman said.

To this point Yerman noted the Center’s design team held an open house at the Center earlier this fall to introduce some preliminary ideas about the expansion. BOZAR has met the team twice. “The applicant introduced themselves to the board and there was one site visit with the applicant. This was the staking in the park to show how three different building options could be laid out on the site. From the feedback the applicant received they are submitting one design.

“This project involves a unique process,” continued Yerman. “It’s important that town people have the opportunity to comment, especially since this is tied into the future of Town Park and the changes that are on the drawing board for there. The key right now is that this meeting is meant for input from the general public that will help the design team get ready for a formal submittal that we anticipate to happen in January.”

So, there will be a very preliminary concept plan at the Tuesday public hearing. The comments are meant to address sight design and massing of the approximately 34,000-square-foot building proposed on the land next to the current center.

Yerman emphasized that the two upcoming public comment sessions are not formal hearings that are part of the official BOZAR process. Those aspects of the process come after the formal submittal.

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