Public weighs in on College-Gilbert development proposals

BY DI STAFF | DECEMBER 05, 2012 6:30 AM

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Iowa City citizens had a chance to make their voices heard on the Gilbert and College Street development proposals at an Iowa City City Council meeting Tuesday night, and dozens took advantage of the opportunity.

The main issue that citizens touched on at the meeting was sustainability. Several citizens brought up concerns about energy efficiency and LEED certification, which requires buildings to be evaluated based on green building design, construction, operations, and maintenance solutions.

Many of the comments revolved around the Chauncey proposal.

Members of FilmScene, a nonprofit organization that wishes to operate a cinema inside of the Chauncey proposal, spoke in support at the meeting, as did several other community members.

However, citizens also expressed concern about the proposed height of the building, at 20 stories high. Some worried the building could reduce light exposure to the nearby Trinity Episcopal Church, while others thought Iowa City should focus on retaining its “small-town” feel.

Several community members supported the New Pioneer Co-op without specifically endorsing one proposal over another (several proposals include the Co-op in their designs).

And some thought there were too many good ideas for one building and hoped the council would exercise some discretion in the details of the final proposals.

— by Nick Hassett

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