Village centers, higher-density housing in latest growth plan

A plan that will guide how Grand Junction grows in the next 25 years calls for the construction of large village centers to cut down on cross-valley commuting and higher-density housing to reduce sprawl.

City Council members got their first look Monday at the preferred alternative for the city’s comprehensive plan, which is nearly complete after two years’ worth of consultant work and public input.

The preferred alternative proposes large village centers at U.S. Highway 50 and 30 Road, 29 and D roads, 29 Road and North Avenue and 24 and H roads. The village centers would promote a variety of land uses, including retail, office and residential, to promote people living close to where they work and shop.

Under the plan, a large village center would create seven housing units an acre and 28 jobs an acre.

The preferred alternative also encourages taller buildings in downtown with a mixture of uses.

As an example, city Principal Planner David Thornton suggested that, in the future, buildings could contain retail space on the first floor, office space on the second floor and residential units on the upper floors. He said future construction may not stretch as high as the Alpine Bank building but higher than the three- or four-story buildings that top out in the area.

“Right now we have a couple of four-story buildings, but we don’t have too much between that four (story) and seven (story),” he said.

Some council members floated the idea of building taller structures in select locations elsewhere in the city, such as 29 and D roads in Pear Park and along 24 Road north of Mesa Mall.

“It does make sense to go up in other areas besides downtown,” Councilman Doug Thomason said.

The council is expected to approve the comprehensive plan next spring.


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