Final Mirrillion phase across the street from waterlogged church

       Despite looming litigation clouds, the developers of Lofts at Mirrillion Heights have submitted a plan showing two buildings for the final half-acre phase of the 1.82- acre, 24-unit project off Henderson and 20th streets.
       The buildings - consisting of three and five townhomes/condos, respectively - would be across a private drive (north of 20th and Henderson) from Trinity United Methodist Church, 701 N. 20th. The church has complained bitterly for the past few years that stormwater runoff from earlier Mirrillion phases, as well as the neighboring Madison Ridge townhome probject, has compromised the church building's foundation. In separate interviews, spokespeople for both those projects (Mirrillion's Denver-based owners have the name “Mission Development,” and Madison Ridge is known as “Harmony Homes”) have denied causing those problems.
       For the final phase, a drainage report by Springs Engineering describes measures that will be taken during construction to “minimize erosion from the site.” This is to include silt fencing, mulching and straw bales. The fencing “will remain in place until vegetation is re-established after the completion of construction,” the report states.
       Another drainage feature will be a swale on an open part of the property south of the construction area. Stormwater from Mirrillion will be piped to the swale, which is intended to slow the flow before it drains naturally to an existing detention pond, from which stormwater will eventually be piped onto city streets, the drainage report states.
       Paul Poppert of Land Patterns Inc., a private planning firm contracted by Mission Development, additionally pledged that “whatever water comes across the construction site will not go onto the church property.”
       This view was confirmed by Ben Gill, the agent for Mission Development in Denver. “You can tell from the report we were mindful of the drainage,” he said. “We told our civil engineer we want to make certain we are properly mitigating any water originating from our property.”
       Bill Anderson, a trustee at Trinity United Methodist, said he will be reviewing the drainage report and has scheduled a meeting on the project with James Mayerl of City Planning. Also, he said, the church is contracting with engineers to determine the cost of drainage-related repairs. Cracking is evident in various locations. “There's no question the building is moving,” he said. “A quarter inch may not seem like much, but to a building it's a lot.”
       Regarding the potential litigation, he said, “I hope we can negotiate this without more problems for everyone, but we're going to have to address the damage to the building.”
       Mirrillion now has 16 units, referred to as “lots” in the overall development plan. The new application seeks final subdivision plat approval for Lots 17 and 18 and a major amendment to the development plan. According to Gill, the amendment was necessary because the owners had previously not known what they wanted to do with the final phase of construction.
       The new buildings will look much like the existing ones - similar facades and a 3-level design. He did not have a prediction for when the work will start. The owners want to sell four units from the previous construction first, he said.
       The density, at 13.19 units per acre is just under the 14 that's allowed in the project's Planned Unit Development zone.

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