Save Arvada Now, together with a number of other concerned groups, attained status in the National Historic Preservation Act Section 106 process as a consulting party. Following a meeting of all consulting parties with the developer, HUD, History Colorado (the State Historic Preservation Office or SHPO), the City of Arvada, and AURA, all consulting parties were to develop plans for alternatives to demolition of the historic Masonic Lodge. Members of Save Arvada Now have been hard at work on plans for a variety of possibilities, including an entertainment venue (did you know the D-note tried to move to the Lodge at one point a couple of years back?), studio space for artists, a restaurant, a museum, a community market, a movie house, a teen center, an event venue, and a community center. For the full list, see below.
On Nov. 19, Save Arvada Now we received the following letter. Letter to Consulting Parties 11-19-13 pdf
In part, it said:
As many of you know the reason the that Park Place Olde Town project became involved in the 106 process related to an application for private financing that included mortgage insurance provided by HUD . As a Federal Agency HUD has a statutory responsibility to the 106 process when an Undertaking involves a historical building as in the case of the former Masonic Building that qualifies because it is more than 50 years in existence (built in 1947)
When analyzing the time that we have involved as well as the additional time that it will take to complete the HUD process, coupled with other considerations related to the HUD insurance, we have decided to proceed with the project without utilizing HUD insurance and therefore discontinuing the 106 Process.
We are sad to have this process interrupted. We will continue our efforts to save the Masonic Lodge, and incorporate it into the development of the PPOT site in a way that preserves our historic heritage and is consistent with the Olde Town “look and feel” that we all love.
Here is the full list of alternative uses that the consulting parties were developing as part of the 106 process.
Potential Masonic Lodge Uses
- Community Center
- Event venue – weddings, receptions, etc. (and McIlvoy Park bad weather back-up)
- Art Movie House
- Cyber Café
- Alternate location for other fraternal organizations and community organizations
- Community market or mini-mall (a la The Source)
- Museum, or several museums
- Antique Mall
- Local Crafts Mall
- Artist Studio Space
- Small business incubator
- Entertainment venue
- Child care Center
- Charter school
- Gym/workout facility, perhaps with climbing wall and/or spa
- Church (maybe Vineyard if they have to leave for TOD)
- Space for board meeting, language immersion classes, cooking classes, crafts, dances
- Music school
- Teen Center
It is clear we have a fight ahead of us. If you care about the future of Olde Town, consider a donation to Save Arvada Now!