What Is The Look of Loveland?
On the early morning of Sunday, May 28, 2017 a massive fire gutted two prominent buildings in downtown Loveland. The fire destroyed numerous businesses and displaced residents. Fortunately no one was injured and like the Greek myth where the Phoenix rises from the ashes to obtain new life the owners of the buildings and businesses are moving forward. If you have visited downtown recently, it is whirling with all kinds of activity.
Downtown is changing, the look and feel of our town is evolving, a recent story from Local 12 news stated “the fire sparked a remodeling project that’s bigger and better than before.” This leads to the question – what is the look of Loveland?
In the past if someone asked you to describe Loveland, you would hear the words “small, quaint, , historic feel, small town charm, family oriented. ” Does that description still apply or is our city evolving into something different? What role does the master plan play in this changing look?
You will recall that City Council on July 24, 2018 voted (6-1, Ms. Settell the lone dissenter) to spend $128K of taxpayer money to hire a firm to complete a master plan. The purpose of a master or comprehensive plan is to provide strategy on the future look and feel of a community. However, massive changes are happening right now with private dollars, no community input and no guidance or vision from the city administration or council.
Let's look at some of those changes:
The buildings damaged by the fire have taken on a different look and feel – they are no longer two story buildings, they are now three story buildings with rooftop bars.
Some people have said that Loveland Station is a “blight” on the community, that the development didn’t have the look or feel of a historic downtown. However, the addition of the third story uses the same building materials as Loveland Station. See attached
New conceptual changes – the bishop building is taking on a New Orleans look, See attached Tano’s doesn’t have a Cajun feel, See attached and the third building that will be a restaurant named Ramsey’s has garage doors and doesn’t appear to have any connection to Louisiana. See attached
The Works, housed in the former city public works building, has changed the look of their patio. See attached
Signage for the former Ron Ronckers business, now renamed Jack Rabbit, is a black and red sign that has no look or feel of the historic building that is home to the business. See attached
The Bond Building is also changing its look. One of the buildings has been torn down. Another building is currently undergoing modifications for a new look. See attached
Both buildings, according to the Planning and Zoning packet dated September 4, 2018 will be painted black and have new signage that is a different color, See attached has a more modern feel and the signage will be illuminated, another new change. See attached
The city is also adding parking meters to the downtown landscape See attached
Across the bridge at W Loveland Ave and Loveland-Madeira Rd, a 19 townhome development will be breaking ground soon. See attached
This brings us back to the beginning question – What is the look of Loveland? It also leads to a new and longer question – if we’ve never implemented the numerous master plans that taxpayers paid for in the past, what makes anyone think this new $128K plan will be implemented when the downtown and the city is being transformed right now without one? See attached
We want to hear from you - Do you like all the changes? Should our city have a uniform look and feel? What do you think is the brand of Loveland? Send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org
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