Randy Wyrick

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February 20, 2013
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Wolcott plan takes next step

EAGLE - A new community in Wolcott got its first round of approvals when the county's planning commission approved it in a split decision.

The plan now goes to the county commissioners who have already given the plan their preliminary approval. Final approval gives the green light for Rick Hermes - the local developer whose Community Concepts Colorado is spearheading the project - to begin construction.

The planning commission voted 4-3 to recommend that the county commissioners approve the project. That vote came after the planning commission's 11th meeting on the Wolcott project.

"It's a good project and a good design and we're going to see it through," Hermes said.

What'll be in Wolcott?

Wolcott will create 1,600 jobs in building and staffing the planned community. More than 800 of those jobs would remain after construction is finished, Hermes said.

The project will start by realigning U.S. Highway 6, moving it away from the Eagle River and closer to Interstate 70.

Most of the homes are proposed to be around 2,000-square feet and be moderately priced, according to the plan. When it's completed, Wolcott would be home to around 2,000 people.

Love it, loathe it

Planning commission members said there's much to like and dislike about the Wolcott plan.

Craig Snowdon said 95 percent of the project is good, and said he wasn't going to throw out the 95 percent he said is good for the 5 percent he has questions about.

Bill Heicher was enthused with the core area, but the downside was too great for him to recommend approval.

Greg Moffet said this is a new town, not a subdivision. He said it could corrode existing communities. The Vail town council member said the workforce should be housed up valley where the jobs are.

Vern Brock voted for it, saying it's planning an entire town, instead of one subdivision at a time. For all the concerns, it's better for Wolcott to be planned all at once, instead of piecemeal, Brock said.

Tim Carpenter said the project will be something to be proud of. He had some concerns about the density in some spots, but said it's necessary to make it work financially.

Staff Writer Randy Wyrick can be reached at 970-748-2935 or rwyrick@vaildaily.com.

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The VailDaily Updated Feb 20, 2013 09:41PM Published Feb 20, 2013 09:36PM Copyright 2013 The VailDaily. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.