Boom In the Shadow of Schnitzer
posted by November 16 at 15:07 PMon
8th and Virginia, MIDTOWN!
Residents at the Cosmopolitan condos, on 8th and Virginia, are banding together to stop a massive office development from blotting out the sun on the west side of their building.
Back in 2006, before the condos opened, developer Schnitzer West was working on a 14-story office project next door to Cosmo. That April, the city changed zoning regulations and Schnitzer resubmitted design plans for a 500-foot mega-office
Last week, in response to Schnitzer’s development and, they say, a lack of response from the city, Cosmo residents posted an open letter to Mayor Nickels, decrying the public process.
Because Cosmo was still vacant when Schnitzer’s designs were changed, the city’s requirement to notify nearby residents wasn’t triggered. Because of the lack of communication from the city, Clifford Tatum, Cosmo’s Community Committee Chair, says residents didn’t have the opportunity to back out purchasing their units without losing their deposits, which were between $15,000 and $50,000. “We entered into a purchase agreement in 2005. At the time, the lot across the street was permitted for a 12-14 story building. We were fairly comfortable with that,” Tatum says.
But hey, so what if rich people don’t have a view, right? Well, Tatum claims it’s about more than that. “Itís not about the view,” he says. “Itís the fact that this building is 15 feet away. Thereís some consideration for light, for privacyóthere would be office workers looking in our windows.” Indeed, a rendering from Schnitzer’s website does seem to indicate that the 500-foot office building will eclipse Cosmo’s west side.
Tatum says attorneys are looking into the building plans but that he’s hoping this can be settled through communication with the developer. “We donít particularly donít want to go down the lawsuit path,” he says. “[We’d like to] facilitate a better neighborly relationship. “