SILVERTHORNE, Colorado - Need a hammer? How about a new bathroom vanity?
Summit County may someday have a virtually endless supply of both - along with thousands of other home-improvement goods - if Lowe's and Home Depot each moves forward with plans to build a new store in Silverthorne. They would join several other similar businesses in town, such as BigHorn Materials and True Value Hardware.
Lowe's has property under contract, and the Town of Silverthorne is processing an application for a 110,000-square-foot Lowe's store and a 25,000-square-foot garden center.
"Their plans are pretty thorough and complete," said Mark Leidal, Silverthorne's community development director. "They're getting serious about putting a store in town."
Home Depot submitted its preliminary plan to the town last week for a 102,000-square-foot store and a 16,000-square-foot garden center.
Lowe's is considering the Bass Autopark property for its store. The land, between Wildernest Road and Buffalo Mountain Drive, once housed a Subaru dealership. It has been vacant for two years.
Home Depot's proposed store would sit on the nearby Moorlag subdivision, on the other side of Interstate 70, near the Dillon Dam.
"It's natural to locate a business there," Home Depot spokesman Mike Ciletti said. "It's already a regional shopping location, and you have an established hub for all the traffic traveling on I-70, Highway 9 and Highway 6. Everybody goes through there to get to their home and to get to their place of employment."
Lowe's entry onto the scene hasn't changed Home Depot's plans, according Ciletti. He described the local market as "underserved" by the home-improvement sector.
"It makes sense that a similar business would want to enter the market," Ciletti said.
Development by either Lowe's or Home Depot is not assured at this point, according to Leidal.
"They bring their applications in to us, and we process them in accordance with the code. Giving approval to the store doesn't necessarily mean they're going to build," Leidal said.
The proposed stores have the potential to be big sales-tax revenue generators for the town of Silverthorne. In March 2008, Home Depot submitted an annual retail sales estimate of $26 million. Town sales tax on that amount would total just more than $1 million. The town does not yet have an estimate from Lowe's.
The Lowe's development will likely go before the Silverthorne Town Council and the town's planning commission within the next six weeks. The town will soon seek comments on Home Depot's application from other agencies, such as Summit County government and the Colorado Department of Transportation.
Julie Sutor can be reached at (970) 668-4630 or firstname.lastname@example.org.