A bit of modern with an Old West feel

That's what residents said they'd like to see for downtown Parker

Posted 7/31/18

Parker residents generally want a historic flair in Mainstreet's architectural design, one that blends modernity with a feel from the Old West, according to results of a survey by Partnering for …

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A bit of modern with an Old West feel

That's what residents said they'd like to see for downtown Parker

Posted

Parker residents generally want a historic flair in Mainstreet's architectural design, one that blends modernity with a feel from the Old West, according to results of a survey by Partnering for Parker's Progress.

The survey follows up on the April survey asking residents what they would like to see downtown, from hotels to restaurants to office spaces.

The results of the summer-long survey by Partnering for Parker's Progress (P3), the town's urban renewal authority responsible for accelerating urban development, were released this month and show how the majority of Parker residents feel about the look of the Mainstreet area.

The “My Mainstreet Visual Preference Survey” surveyed 342 residents on a variety of questions related to architectural designs for Parker's downtown area, accompanied by photos of what those designs could look like. The survey began in April and was presented to residents at various town events, where participants were given photos of potential architectural looks and voted on which choice fit best in Parker.

Mayor Mike Waid was pleased with the feedback the survey provided, which allowed the town to collaborate with its citizens in determining the downtown area's future regarding such categories as retail space, commercial space, parks and other attractions.

“This project allows this town as an entity to come together and be able to define ahead of time,” Waid said. “There's going to be points where those overlap, and that's the sweet spot. It helps to create certainty of `this is what we all want to see from our community.' ”

Parker's Mainstreet area today is mostly restaurants and small businesses. The Douglas County Public Library was added in 2015 on the east end of Mainstreet.

Survey reveals consensus

Participants responded to potential looks for nine categories:

• mixed use retail with office above

• mixed use retail with residential above

• restaurants

• boutique or small retail

• park or green space;

• mall or shared office space

• market or farmers' market near the PACE Center, south of Mainstreet

• outdoor market or shopping center near the Pine Street curve, at the east end of Mainstreet

• and courtyard or plaza structures near the Pine Street curve.

For the most part, the consensus was to incorporate a historic character into Mainstreet's architecture, Waid said.

“Bringing that with a modern contemporary look, that adds character,” he said. “If everything looked identical, that becomes sterile. But by having this range of look and feel, that's what brings interesting character to this area.”

Participants also were asked what they liked about the downtown areas of Littleton, Castle Rock and Fort Collins. The majority of people said they liked the pedestrian-friendly aspects of all three areas the most. Other popular aspects of each given downtown were variety of dining spaces, landscaping, outdoor seating and places to drink and socialize.

Development of Parker's Mainstreet area will focus on a mix of uses, from office space to condos to parks and green space, Waid said.

Next steps

Jason Rogers, P3's director, said the results from the survey will be coupled with market analysis of what is feasible for downtown Parker. The results will also provide guidelines for developers as a framework to accomplish the goals of the My Mainstreet Project, Rogers said.

"Bottom line, if we want to improve and progress Parker, community engagement and what we hear to the built environment plays a fundamental role," Rogers said.

Rogers said the next step is to develop illustrative images that align with the feedback from the Land Uses and Visual Preference surveys.

"The goal would then be to engage our community once again to receive feedback on 'what could be in downtown Parker," Rogers said.

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