What is the purpose of this planning effort?
Short Answer: In short, the purpose of this planning effort is to establish a detailed “Three-Mile Plan” for the Town of Lyons. Municipalities in Colorado are authorized by the state to create “Three-Mile Plans” – which focus on properties just outside of the town limits that intrinsically have an increased potential for annexation. In fact, these plans are actually a requirement of the Colorado Revised Statute (C.R.S. 31-12-105 et. seq.) Additionally, this planning effort is based on and guided by the goals and objectives of the Town of Lyons 2010 Comprehensive Plan.
Long Answer: The purpose of this project is to achieve the goals, objectives and strategies that were formally identified in the “Land Use and Growth” chapter of the 2010 Lyons Comprehensive Plan. This process will identify and quantify opportunities and constraints, and combine those inputs with public feedback to create an illustrative land use vision for the Lyons Primary Planning Area (LPPA). This vision will be reflected in a formal master plan which will be used to guide future growth and development.
The LPPA is made up by three “small areas” located adjacent to the current town limits, including the Eastern Corridor, the South St. Vrain and Apple Valley. The LPPA was established by an Intergovernmental Agreement (IGA) between the Town of Lyons and Boulder County in 2002, and later updated in 2012. Utility expansion to the Eastern Corridor is already underway as part of an existing Economic Development Administration ("EDA") grant program. In addition, a Sanitary Sewer Expansion Feasibility Study for the Western Corridor and Apple Valley should be completed (as a separate engineering project) by June 2016. Information from this latter effort will be provided to the planning consultant team for consideration in the LPPA planning effort.
With the loss of approximately 75 residential units (much of which was affordable housing) due to the flood of 2013, the need for additional housing in Lyons has been magnified. In addition to units that were a total loss, numerous others damaged by the flood are being demolished and their lots converted to undevelopable open and park space as part of the CDBG-DR 404 Buyout Program.
While housing development is a priority, so too is growth in the Town of Lyons’ local economy. With real estate frontage along Highway 66/36, the Eastern Corridor has been identified as an area that is ideal for commercial/light industrial development. The area will also benefit from the installation of new utility lines. It is desired that commercial growth in the district will compliment, rather than compete with, the downtown commercial district. As a gateway to the Town of Lyons, improvements in the Eastern Corridor will serve to enhance the entire Town by creating an aesthetically-pleasing and functional entryway to the town center.
In essence, the Lyons Primary Planning Area Master Plan will serve as a tool which will inform future annexation and development requests in the Area. However, before properties in the LPPA can become part of the Town of Lyons, a plan must be in place. Furthermore, the land use and design recommendations for these parcels must be established in accordance with the Town of Lyons 2010 Comprehensive Plan, Lyons-Boulder County Intergovernmental Agreement ("IGA"), Lyons Recovery Action Plan, Lyons Municipal Code, and other such documents.