Denver voters overwhelmingly approve bond packages; Green Roof proponents have slim lead

Posted at 11:25 PM, Nov 07, 2017
and last updated 2017-11-08 01:40:14-05

DENVER – Voters overwhelmingly approved a $937 million general obligation bond package that will push money into 460 projects mostly related to transportation and mobility, and appear close to having approved the Green Roof Initiative.

READ: Election night live blog | Election results page

As of 10 p.m., around 2,250 votes separated the votes in favor and against the Green Roof ordinance, with those voting “yes” in the lead, 51.3 percent to 48.7 percent. Proponents of the initiative cautiously declared victory Tuesday night as ballots were still being counted.

Opponents of the initiative, which included the mayor and city council, outraised proponents exponentially after Hancock said the measure “goes too far too fast.” Some argued having the roofs would drive up construction costs and rent prices.

But proponents say green roofs across the city would help reduce pollution and noise, and help buildings save money on utilities because of the green insulation atop them.

If voters approve the measure, any new buildings at least 25,000-square feet in size would have to cover at least 20 percent of their roof with “green features,” and some older buildings could have to add similar features should they get new roofs.

The GO bond package wasn’t nearly as close as of 10 p.m., and Mayor Hancock had already praised Denver voters for passing the measures by that time.

The 10 p.m. numbers from Denver showed that all the bond questions garnered at least 65-percent support from voters. The most-popular bond packages were the transportation and mobility package (Referred Question 2A), which was getting about 73 percent support as of 10 p.m. Tuesday, and the parks and recreation package (Question 2F), which had received 70.5 percent support.

The least popular, though both received 66-percent support, were the package for Denver Public Facilities (Question 2G) and the Denver Department of Environmental Health package (Question 2H).

Once results are finalized Nov. 24, the following would be approved by voters should the results hold true:

  • $431 for transportation and mobility projects
  • $116.9 million for city-owned cultural facility improvements
  • $75 million for a new outpatient center at Denver Health Medical Center
  • $77 million for safety facility projects
  • $69.3 million for Denver Public Library improvements
  • $151.6 million for parks and recreation
  • $16.5 million for city-owned facility improvements

Beyond the Denver Health and Denver Public Library projects, some of the largest proposals on the list include $101 million for deferred road maintenance – repaving, curb and gutter repair, bridge rehabilitation, etc. -- $55 million for a bus rapid transit system along Colfax Avenue, $37.5 million for a recreation center in Westwood and $35.5 million to renovate the North Building at the Denver Art Museum.

Denver7 will update the results Wednesday morning.