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Golden's Zoning Update - Intro


As you might know, the City of Golden is taking public comment on a proposed zoning code update. Details on the code can be found on Guiding Golden. Zoning code has racist roots, as described by Jim Smith's GAC blog post and by Don Cameron's blog post with Golden United, and can have significant implications for affordability. A few significant things to know about the proposal:

  • We have until approximately March 5th to submit comments.

  • The proposed code uses form-based code (see videos on Guiding Golden, also linked below, to learn more) in addition to the conventional use-based code (R1, R2, R3, C1, etc.).

  • The proposed code does not impact HOAs - they fall under a "PUD" zone, which isn't covered.

  • The proposal addresses the concern about the "character" of new developments and additions. The code encourages smaller cottage-style buildings and provides several options for each area within Golden.

  • Form-based code is often applauded for promoting inclusivity, equity, and sustainable living opportunities. The code would maintain use-based code, so would not leverage the full benefits of form-based code.

  • The proposed code legalizes code agreed upon. This means that if you purchase or own a property, you will know exactly what is allowed for future development. This improves predictability and reduces the planning burden on the owner/developer because if the new building fits within the forms in the code, they only need an administrative building permit.

  • The code doesn't specifically address affordable options, though there are some places where the code could be more inclusive. Please consider joining the Golden United zoning discussion on Feb 18th for thoughts on the affordability piece (registration link below).

  • Additional density and accessory dwelling unit options could provide additional opportunities for some "affordable" units, though wouldn't guarantee it

  • Even though the code does not address affordable options, it is an opportunity for us to weigh in that formal affordable housing options coordinated and funded through the city (or city partners) is a high priority

  • Parking code is separate and not addressed in this zoning code, though some forms do indicate the number of car spaces in the garage.



I encourage you to look through the information at Guiding Golden and submit your comments by March 5th. The City of Golden is hosting "Office Hours" Thursdays at 4:00 pm in February and on March 4th to answer questions anyone has on the code proposal.

Videos describing form-based codes

Peter Park 1—Planning versus Zoning (video 8:03, Golden United Planning and Zoning Educational Event, May 7, 2019)

Peter Park 2—Form-based Codes (video 5:30, Golden United Planning and Zoning Educational Event, May 7, 2019)

What is a Form-Based Code? (video 1:31, Institute for Public Administration at the University of Delaware)


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