PROJECT SPOTLIGHT: Proposed  Zia Cantina

Tim Turner, owner of Zia Taqueria, and architect Elizabeth Boone, Reynolds Ash Associates, presented a proposal for redevelopment of a currently vacant parcel in the North Main corridor (2977 Main Avenue) at the June 14 Design Review Board meeting. The project received unanimous approval from the Board for the site layout and building design.


The proposal is to build a two-story restaurant with seasonal rooftop dining and meeting space. Rooftop dining requires a Conditional Use Permit so there will be one more round of review by the Planning Commission prior to building permit review. The building is located towards the northeastern corner of the parcel and parking areas are located behind the building. Additional outdoor dining areas are located on the north and west sides of the building. New, wider sidewalks around the perimeter of the site and street trees, along with the recently constructed ADA ramps at the corner, will improve the pedestrian experience in the area. Since it will be a Mexican restaurant, the building design includes elements reflective of a colonial Mexican architecture. It will be an attractive and engaging addition to the emerging ‘Uptown’ district.
The area surrounding the 30th and Main intersection is emerging as a vibrant destination with the recent remodel of Durango Brewing Company and the relocation of The Rock Lounge to 111 E 30th Street. Because of the new and expanded businesses in the area, City staff have been exploring alternative street designs to accommodate the higher demand for parking and to minimize overflow into adjacent neighborhoods. The redevelopment of the 2977 Main Avenue property will also include the addition of 90-degree perpendicular parking along the south side of 30th Street (see rendering). This design almost doubles the amount of on-street public parking available. This has been a collaborative design effort between the property owner, City staff, and neighboring property owners and we are excited to try out this updated design as a way to facilitate redevelopment along the North Main corridor.



  • The Twin Buttes water system was accepted by the City and building permits are starting to be issued.
  • The Water Reclamation Facility Site Plan Review process has been completed and Building Permit process is underway.
  • Ross at the Durango Mall is close to receiving a Certificate of Occupancy (CO) from the City.

Recently Issued Building Permits

  • Goodwill Building – 26086 Hwy 160
  • Three Springs Confluence Apartments Phase II (70-units)
  • Purple Cliffs at Escalante Mixed-Use Building – 1309 Escalante Drive (see image below)
  • 2 Twin Buttes Single Family Homes

National Endowment for the Arts Grant

The National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) announced on June, 14, 2017 that it was awarding 16 grants totaling over $2.8M to support Colorado organizations that employ artists and cultural workers to provide programs for thousands of people. "The arts are all around us, enhancing our lives in ways both subtle and obvious, expected and unexpected," said NEA Chairman Jane Chu. "Supporting projects like the ones in Colorado offers more opportunities to engage in the arts every day."
The City of Durango was awarded $25,000 to support a new public art project as part of the Take pART in Durango Initiative. Under the direction of a lead artist to be selected through an open call process, local students and community members will participate in the creation of a gateway sculpture. Art classes and workshops will teach residents skills in artistic disciplines such as ceramics, mosaic, and welding, allowing them to collaborate on the creation of a sculpture that will reflect the historic and cultural character of the community. The artwork will be installed in the medians at the new Highway 550/160 Continuous Flow Intersection, marking the entrance to the City.

Housing Program Update

Planning staff is wrapping up a draft of the Housing Plan, and will present proposed policies and actions from the draft to City Council at the July 11th City Council Study Session. There are five overarching goals contained in the Plan and a series of more specific items intended to increase housing availability and affordability. Staff will use City Council’s direction from the study session to make edits to the Plan, and then will hold a public meeting later in the summer to present the draft. For more info, visit www.durangogov.org/housing

Stormwater Master Plan Phase 1 of 3 Update

The 90% draft of the new Storm Drainage Criteria Manual is available for peer and public review on the City’s web page. The Criteria Manual’s chapters are 99% complete.  Engineering staff is currently evaluating/addressing comments from the public.  This first phase of the project will establish the design criteria for management of storm water run-off using current, Durango specific rainfall data. Two meetings have been held with local consultants and developers to review the proposed criteria and staff gave the City Council an update on April 25th. Phase 2 of the project will begin later this year. Phase 2 will re-evaluate the storm water basins in and around Durango and will use the new Criteria Manual to determine Stormwater flows that effect projects in and around the City. For more info, visit www.durangogov.org/stormwater

Development Review Project Submittals

Below is a list of the major development review projects that were submitted for review in May and June:

Dev Review



The Community Development Department was recently assigned as the new City Staff for the Public Art Commission.  This is a great fit as the new Comprehensive Plan, that was adopted by City Council in April, 2017, contains the first Arts, Culture and Creative Economy Element. For Durango's Public Art updates, follow: www.facebook.com/durangopublicart/

The Community Development Department provides staffing for the following Boards and Commissions: 

  • Planning Commission
  • Design Review Board
  • LUDC Board of Adjustment
  • Historic Preservation Board
  • Public Art Commission

Upcoming July Meetings

  1. City Council Study Session (Council Chambers) – Tue. July 11th @ 4pm
    • Sustainability Action Plan Update
    • STAR Communities Designation
    • Housing Program Update
    • Lighting in the Central Business District
  2. Design Review Board Meeting (Council Chambers) – Wed. July 12th @ 5:30pm
    • Best Western Rio Grande Inn Sign Variance
    • 3211 Main Avenue Early Design Guidance
  3. Proposed Traffic Signal @ E 2nd Avenue & College Drive Neighborhood Informational Meeting (Council Chambers) – Thur. July 13th @ 5:30pm
  4. City Council Meeting (Council Chambers) – Tue. July 18th @ 6:30pm
    • Marijuana Business Measurement Method LUDC Text Amendment
    • 1, 4 & 6 Woodland Circle Boundary Adjustment
    • 295 ½ W 19th Street & 1922 W 3rd Avenue Minor Subdivision
  5. Historic Preservation Meeting (Council Chambers) – Wed. July 19th @ 5:30pm
  6. Planning Commission Study Session (River City Hall) – Thur. July 20th @4pm
  7. Planning Commission Meeting (Council Chambers) – Mon. July 24th @ 6pm
    • Zia Cantina Rooftop Patio Conditional Use Permit
    • LUDC Text Amendments
  8. Public Art Commission Meeting (River City Hall) - Tue. July 25th @ 8am
  9. City Council Study Session (Council Chambers) – Tue. July 25th @ 4pm
  10. Board of Adjustment Meeting (Council Chambers) – CANCELLED 
*This newsletter is designed to provide a glimpse of city meetings and is not all encompassing. Please check www.durangogov.org for the most current information.
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