Council to look at Boomerang – again
A proposal for redevelopment of the Boomerang Lodge will come before City Council again tonight.The council has already taken public comment at two previous meetings. Each time, the height and mass of the project posed problems for some of the council members, even though the proposal complies with the city’s land use code.The existing Boomerang, parts of which date back more than 50 years, is a 34-unit lodge that occupies roughly 23,000 square feet on Hopkins Avenue between Fourth and Fifth streets.One of the council’s concerns with the last proposal was the historical integrity of the east wing of the building, designed by Aspenite Charlie Paterson, who studied under architect Frank Lloyd Wright.The new proposal calls for 47 hotel units and total floor area of roughly 49,170 square feet. The last proposal included 53 lodge rooms, but the reduction in the number of units allows the historic east wing to remain at its current two stories.The new lodge would include five free-market residential units, down from a proposed six units the last time the proposal came before council, to allow for reduced height in another area of the lodge.The maximum height of the lodge in the tallest area is now 36 feet and 6 inches, down from 39 feet in the last proposal.It also would include two affordable housing units, as well as a total of 48 parking spaces, 31 underground and 17 surface spots.Some council members expressed concern at previous meetings that the lodge rooms would be sold as condominiums, although owners would be limited as to the number of days they could occupy the rooms. The remainder of the time, the rooms would be available as short-term rentals.The council meets at 5 p.m. at City Hall.
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The Wheeler Opera House will remain dark into 2021, with current COVID-19 public health orders in place. Meanwhile, the masonry work on the exterior of the building will continue into July.