Now you know: Nov. 15, 2023

King Soopers shooting defendant enters plea; more housing on the way for Buffs, Boulderites

Adobe Stock

King Soopers shooting defendant pleads not guilty in preliminary hearing 

The alleged King Soopers shooter pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity in a preliminary hearing Tuesday. At the hearing, a judge ruled that there was sufficient evidence to move forward with a trial for Ahmad Al Aliwi Alissa, the King Soopers shooting suspect.  

Judge Ingrid Bakke set Alissa’s bond at $100 million and tentatively set the trial for August 2024. A competency hearing is scheduled for January. 

The 24-year-old faces more than 100 criminal charges related to the March 2021 shooting that left 10 dead, including a Boulder Police Officer. 

The preliminary hearing comes after a judge found Alissa competent to stand trial in October, more than two years after the shooting.

More Buffs housing on the horizon

CU Boulder’s Board of Regents is setting its sights on two new housing developments amid a tight housing market for students, faculty and staff. 

The first is an on-campus, apartment-style building for non-first-year students at 19th and Athens Street called Residence One, which will include more than 330 beds, grab-and-go food service, a coffee shop and a UPS store, according to a Nov. 7 university press release. Construction is slated to begin in March 2024, with students moving in August 2026. 

The second is the purchase of a nearly 9-acre property in Louisville, 1164 W. Dillon Rd., the site of a Regal Cinebarre movie theater, for a “transit-oriented” housing and mixed-use development, pending state approvals. The university plans to close on the deal in early 2024, and then will engage with the City of Louisville and community members on the future of the project. 

The developments are aimed at “creating more on-campus and transit-oriented housing options, reducing pressure on the local housing market, vehicle miles traveled and greenhouse gas emissions,” according to a news release. 

It’s a small slice of the pie for a master plan that envisions 4,400 to 6,000 new on-campus beds over the next 15 to 30 years. Other plans, like Residence Two (another on-campus site for graduate students set for development one year after Residence One) and CU Boulder South are also on the horizon.

Easy, breezy RCV

Boulder’s first ranked choice voting (RCV) mayoral election went well for voters, according to a voter experience poll conducted by Citizen Data. From a random sampling of 600 general election voters, more than 86% said filling out their RCV ballot was “easy” or “very easy,” and more than three quarters of voters were “satisfied” or “very satisfied” with their RCV experience, the poll found. A Pew study earlier this year found that just over a quarter of Americans are satisfied with pick-one plurality, a voting system in which the candidate with the most votes wins whether or not they received a majority (50%-plus) of votes. 

Rally Flats affordable housing development moves forward

Central Boulder is receiving 100 more units of permanent and “deeply affordable housing.”. 

Boulder Housing Partners (BHP) broke ground on the Rally Flats project Nov. 15. Construction is expected to last 16 months, according to BHP’s website. 

The 1.86-acre lot at the corner of 29th and Bluff Street (formerly home to RallySport Fitness Center) will consist of 24 studios, 62 one-bedroom apartments and 14 two-bedroom units for households earning between 30% and 60% of the Area Median Income. Rents will range from $930 and $1,794, which BHP estimates is $1,000 per month less compared to similar market rate apartments. 

“Rally Flats is not only deeply affordable but also situated in a beautiful, transit-rich, in-fill neighborhood,” BHP executive director Jeremy Durham said in a press release. “We eagerly anticipate this project providing a solid foundation for economic stability for 100 future residents, and we’re proud to bring this type of critical housing infrastructure forward for the Boulder community.”