Sunday, March 1, 2009

Longmont Flour Mill: The Day After the Fire

Latest reports say that two 17 year-olds have been arrested in connection with the fire at the Golden West Milling Company building:

As recently as 1996, the structure was deemed to be solid and there was a proposal by a local preservation-minded architectural firm to renovate the Mill to hold the Longmont Museum.

If you look closely (double click on the picture to get a larger view), you can perhaps see the name being revealed on the top of the building, almost as a last reminder to us about the significance of this structure to Longmont's history.

Those words weren't evident before (picture from early 2008), as they were covered up in paint, with the checkerboard pattern:

The brick administration building doesn't appear to be damaged.

No doubt, we'll see a lot of this torn down now. It was going to happen anyway with the RTD FasTraks station being planned for this area but it's still a sad day for Longmont.


lalapapawawa said...

The comments from the Times Call readers weren't too flattering. Maybe this will spur the planned renovations to the area? They were planning to develop the area to be a work-play-live kind of development with loft spaces in the silos, weren't they?

In a Van Down By the St. Vrain River said...

I think the silos were going to come down as part of the whole revamp of that area, for the RTD FasTraks station concept. But yes, the plan was going to include space for businesses, restaurants, and housing. Unfortunately this picture got clouded when RTD recently suggested that FasTraks may not get to Longmont until 2034!

lalapapawawa said...

Did you notice the article in the Times Call about the Burden development plan for Coffman and Long's Peak? And the LDDA is redefining the perimeter of downtown to include that area, apparently to make it easier to funnel money in their general direction.
Flour Mill... Thistle Community mixed use deveolopment... Burden Inc.... lots of competition for development dollars in a concentrated corridor.

In a Van Down By the St. Vrain River said...

I did see that Burden development proposal. Although their Roosevelt building across the street doesn't look like it's taken off yet, this new development might be a good thing. Coffman Street has a lot of potential, if you ask me. But what happens to this development if the Main Street traffic consultants recommend some type of offload onto Coffman Street?

lalapapawawa said...

Are you referring to the $75K traffic study? What do you see happening if traffic were offloaded to Coffman?
From my reading, I've read 3 proposals for development around the Main St. corridor, including the Flour Mill. The city needs to have a clear understanding of the traffic grid, or it's going to be a big ole mess.
Have you read the market analysis for the flour mill?
I found the assessment interesting, as it pointed out the gap between the reality of what was happening in downtown and the PERCEPTION of what was happening, and how different they were. You don't have to read too many comments on the T-C website to see that holds true. People love to talk, praise and complain, but a study will say what's actually happening over time, and I think the city needs to know what's going on before Burden, FasTraks, Thistle and Flour Mill get too excited about What Bright Things Could Be. I have a soft spot in my heart for downtown environments though, and I would like to think there was room enough for everyone to be happy ENOUGH to visit, live, play and spend there.

In a Van Down By the St. Vrain River said...

Yes, I was referring to that $75K Main Street study. I've seen the uproar but the City really has to do something. The current situation is very dangerous and non-intuitive for pedestrians trying to cross Main Street. I've seen a few near-close accidents. But I'm wondering what such a study can recommend? (a) split up north/south Main like Loveland did, (b) reduce it to two lanes and put in diagonal parking, and (c) build a beltway around town. (a) will upset the neighboring neighbors, including those on Coffman, (b) will upset CDOT and perhaps cause traffic pileups, and (c) will be twenty years out. Should be interesting to see what comes out of the $75K.