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Thursday, August 22, 2019

City answers growth management questions

Growth presents opportunities and challenges across the Front Range and within the city. Recent inquiries from residents, dialogues on social media and editorials have raised numerous questions regarding the city’s growth management.

The city plans for growth through its Comprehensive Plan and a detailed development review system that considers growth demands on transportation, water and sewer, parks and open space, and other services.

Growth planning is also integrated with the city’s adopted Strategic Plan with a vision for promoting sustainability, being a regional leader in affordable housing and creating vibrant and inclusive neighborhoods. The current Comprehensive Plan accommodates 5,556 new housing units across the city through the year 2035, which is a significantly slower growth rate than the city experienced in the 1970s and 1980s.

A recent Westminster Window editorial inaccurately stated that the city discontinued its Growth Management Program (GMP). This is not true.

The city has an active GMP in Westminster Municipal Code Title XI Chapter 3 and its new structure in the Municipal Code actually adds weight to the program. A competition component of the GMP was eliminated in 2018 as the competition no longer served its purpose as established in 1978.

The change to the GMP was accompanied by new Residential Design Standards, the first update to these documents in many years. Many of these updates address concerns about the quality of recent development proposals. The changes to the city’s GMP will improve the design and appearance of new residential development.

Westminster's Population 1950-2010 

Year Westminster  Total Population
1950 1,686
1960 13,850
1970 19,512
1980 50,211
1990 74,625
2000 100,940
2010 106,114
2019 113,875
*approximate until we get official 2020 Census Count

 

The city is now engaging residents and community stakeholders in a long-range planning effort called Westminster Forward that includes updating the Comprehensive Plan, forming the city’s first Sustainability Plan, creating a citywide Transportation and Mobility Plan, updating a Parks, Recreation and Libraries Plan, updating the Water Supply Plan and updating the Development Code with improved design standards.

All residents, businesses and other stakeholders are encouraged to participate in the current online survey. Westminster Forward will also have a booth at Movies in the Park at City Park on Friday, Aug. 23, starting at 7 p.m. with an interactive activity. Please add your voice to this effort.

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