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Mixed responses ahead of vote to allow redevelopment of Aurora shopping center

East Bank Shopping Center
Posted at 5:44 PM, Feb 14, 2022
and last updated 2022-02-15 12:00:30-05

AURORA, Colo. — A much-needed facelift could soon come to Aurora's East Bank Shopping Center near South Parker Road and East Quincy Avenue, but what that facelift should look like depends on who you ask.

"There's no question that it needs to be redeveloped," said neighbor Bill VanSickle. "We're just opposed to what they're proposing as far as the redevelopment."

The manager of the property, Kimco Realty, wants to turn part of the vacant lot into a four-story, 311-unit apartment complex. It would require converting some of the shopping center's parking into residential parking, in addition to a parking garage that will be built, and moving some of the businesses closest to the site.

"We'd like to see the density dropped and, again, an easement that comes through and lines up with Parker Road here," VanSickle said.

VanSickle says his issue isn't with turning part of the shopping center into housing in a region in need of supply. It's the traffic that may come with adding 311 apartments he's concerned about .

"We use this center to get to the light at Quincy and to get to Parker Road," he said. "That's going to create quite a bottleneck during rush hour and other peak times."

That's why he and others have asked Aurora City Council to reject the developer's request to increase the building's length from 200 feet to 610 feet, which would essentially limit the number of units. The city's planning commission unanimously approved the request on Jan. 12.

"If we went to 200 [feet], that probably would require two buildings, and we could run the easement right down here with one building on one side, one building on the other," VanSickle said.

Nearby businesses, including McDonald's and Circle K, have expressed support for the project, as it would revitalize the shopping center.

A final vote on the project's site plan and the building length adjustment was set to occur during the Aurora City Council meeting Monday at 6:30 p.m. However, the council unanimously decided to delay the vote until March 28 to give more time for developers to work out details of relocating some of the small businesses in the development like Pet Palace.

VanSickle and others are hoping council members reject the adjustment.

Representatives for the City of Aurora's planning commission and the building's developer were not immediately available Monday.