Boulder is a city of non-stop activity. Whatever you’re looking to find, odds are, you’ll find it inside (or dang close by) to our 25-square miles of happiness. From sports to wildlife to organic goods and community shelters giving back — Boulder knows community. Which is why you might want to pay attention to a sales tax initiative coming to Boulder ballots this fall.
Boulder is already moving forward with improvements to a new “civic area.” From ninth to 17th streets and Arapahoe to Canyon, the city’s making changes that will develop this previously neglected area into a variety of buildings and amenities for the citizenship of Boulder to enjoy.
The area has historically had a high transient population and there are plans to bring everything from a new performing arts complex to a year-round indoor farmers market to the new civic area. Those changes, however, need funding.
That’s why voters will see a ballot initiative this fall proposing a 0.3% sales tax increase to fund these improvements. While the sales tax won’t single handedly fund all of these improvements (nor will 100% of proceeds go to the civic area alone), the increase is expected to put about $8.7M towards these redevelopment costs if passed.
There are bigger questions that need to be answered, especially how community shelter projects can support the area’s homeless if displaced by the redevelopment efforts. It’s callous to think, “Hey, if you can’t afford to live here, get out.” Every city in the nation experiences some sort of homeless challenge, a condition that spans issues ranging from socioeconomic to the availability of mental health care.
It will also be curious to see how the Boulder public will be able to lend their thoughts on what this area should become.
To learn more about the proposed sales tax increase, here are a few solid pieces of reading from our friends over at The Daily Camera:
Boulder council supports sending short-term capital tax to voters
Boulder to ‘activate’ downtown Civic Area with summer events
and an op/ed piece on the subject: Editorial advisory board: Pay as you go tax