RIVER’S EDGE: It’s not over, folks

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Your Aug. 17 article in by Keith Erickson provided an excellent overview of the controversial River’s Edge Apartments development in Coeur d’Alene on the Spokane River. It described how the monstrous “Plan A” with its 680 apartments, in multiple high-rise buildings, was unanimously rejected by both the Planning Commission and City Council, and that a “Plan B” with 29 homes on the riverfront and 250 apartments was later approved. But the “Plan A” is not totally dead. The developer has filed an unusual “Request For Reconsideration” with the Council to reverse their earlier rejection.

This “reconsideration” provides an opportunity for the Council to put conditions any approval, including:

• no re-zoning to the very high density ‘R-34’

• a scaled-down project (fewer apartments and high-rise buildings) to reduce impacts on traffic and schools

• building heights within city code

• increased setback requirements for buildings on the riverfront for a public use area with trails.

These recommendations, with further details, were key elements in a recommended “alternative plan” submitted to the city by We The People of Coeur d’Alene in June.

The City Council must be strong and recognize that this is a “once-in-forever” chance on this special riverfront parcel, and that by virtue of the “2013 Annexation Agreement” for this parcel, the city has the authority to approve or disapprove any development proposals — to get it right.

ROGER SMITH

We The People of Coeur d’Alene

wtpcda@gmail.com

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