Berthoud Weekly Surveyor | Covering all the angles in the Garden Spot

Trustees hear from 3 committees and dive deeper into development codes

May 23, 2019 | Local News

By Rudy Hemmann

The Surveyor

The Berthoud Board of Trustees convened a study session Tuesday evening and received reports from the three committees that regularly advise the board.

The committees which reported are the Tree Advisory Committee, the Historic Preservation Advisory Committee (HPAC) and the PORT (Parks, Open Space, Recreation and Trails) Advisory Committee.

In a letter to the board, the Tree Advisory Committee touted the planting of more than 50 young trees in a newly-established town-owned tree nursery. “Other goals met by the committee are: Submittal of re-application for recognition as a Tree City USA. This will be the 36th consecutive year we have met the requirements to qualify as a Tree City USA under the program administered by the National Arbor Day Foundation in conjunction with the ColoradoState Forest Service.

The requirements are: Have a tree board or department, have a community tree-care ordinance, have a community forestry program with a minimum annual budget of $2 per town resident, and participate in an Arbor Day Observance and Proclamation.

The Arbor Day Foundation also rewards communities that go above and beyond the $2 per capita toward planting, care and removal of town trees, and the planning efforts that make that happen. This award is given to recognize high levels of tree care with innovative programs, such

as our EAB (Emerald Ash Borer) Response Plan, for which we received the 2016 growth award. We were awarded again in 2017 for our EAB treatment cost-share program, and we hope to receive a growth award for 2018 for our tree-inventory update and on-line publishing.

In addition to breaking ground for the tree nursery, other goals for 2019 include creating better outreach for the EAB cost-share program and use photos to depict examples of tree species recommended in Berthoud and post the photos on the website.

In a letter submitted by HPAC the Committee reported “a successful 2018, in which four historic homes were added to the register, and two new plaques were installed at two of these homes. The plaques for the remaining two homes will be installed shortly.

The HPAC held a December open house at City Star with newly-listed owners of historic homes, and for owners of prospective homes interested in getting on the register.

HPAC has also renewed its relationship with the Berthoud Historical Society, and committee member Tracy Briggs is on the historical society’s board.

A majority of members attended at least one day of the Saving Places Conference put on by History Colorado in Denver. The commission is now at full capacity, the first time in many years.

Goals for 2019 include:

Add at least four historic properties to the register

Improve the presence of HPAC to the community

Explore ways to save or assist Four Square Church and the train depot

Explore innovative ways to improve historic preservation in Berthoud — to this end, the chairman has invited Adventures in Preservation and Greensky to talk about their innovative historic preservation programs and technology.

Create an event to showcase houses on the register to attract prospective homes.

The PORT Committee also celebrated successful 2018 with improvements / expansion of the skate park, adoption of a unified trails master plan, adoption of phase one of Berthoud Reservoir master plan (the committee hopes to open this amenity to the public in the fall 2019), adoption of a recreation facility, and parks master plan.

PORT goals for 2019 include:

Establishing a community dog park, establish a soft surface trail near the heron rookery adjacent to Heron Lakes

The trustees also reviewed specific changes to the town development code topics discussed included:

At an April 30, 2019, workshop, board members discussed “updates to the development code, and concern with the development code.”

Among topics touched on during discussion were the following.

Staff looked for direction from the board regarding these issues:

Definition of the term “open space” and how it differs from “parkland;” whether stormwater detention cells should be included as open space; and if seven percent of open space is sufficient when parkland is added to the total

Park standards – updated to reflect changes to infrastructure requirements for pocket parks, neighborhood parks and community parks.

Rezonings / Master Plans for new developments – The Master Plan proposal by staff would be required for all residential re-zonings or subdivisions over 10 acres in size and unlike the old concept planning process, would be binding.

Master Plans would have the following:

Traffic Plan, Open Space plan, Park(s) type, style and location, Pedestrian Network, Zoning Map, Overall Utility Plan.

Lot diversity – The board expressed support for the new lot-diversity requirements and a desire that density is not pushed to disconnected islands on the edges of each development.

Public noticing – Public noticing currently stands at 500 feet.

Streets – Overall acceptance of revising the street standards to put them into compliance

with Loveland street standards.

Appeals – staff will add language allowing appeals of Final Plats to the town board.

Architecture – A desire to tighten the design standards to discourage monotonous subdivisions and encourage smaller builders

Sign code – The Mountain Avenue Plan will create a new sign code for properties along Mountain Avenue. This resolves the majority of sign requests.

Staff recommends an overhaul of the sign code eliminating internally lit box signs.

First and second readings of development related matters – a first and second reading is not appropriate for development-related items, as the majority are quasi-judicial matters.”

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