Brightwater Club golf community taking shape
GYPSUM – Russ Hatle, one of the key developers of the Brightwater Club golf community on Gypsum Creek, took a drive out on the property mid-day one day last week.At least 100 construction workers were on the job, grading golf course holes, digging future lakes, smoothing road beds for pavement or hammering on the framework of model homes.”If we’re going under, we’re doing a poor job of it,” Hatle said as he smiled about the beehive of construction activity. Contrary to the local rumor mill, which has lately suggested the upscale development is having problems, Hatley says the project is doing well. The first 200 lots in the development have been sold. When completed, the 930-acre gated development will feature 575 residential units, 18 holes of golf, 600 acres of open space, and amenities such as clubhouses, a fitness and spa center, and fly fishing on a private stream.Some of the first nine golf holes are on the verge of being ready for play. Club members can use a small, but elegant, temporary club house on Valley Road. The fishing “cabin,” another clubhouse of sorts, is complete. Seven model homes are being built. Hatle sais that when 40 lots were released on July 15, 33 sold that day. The remaining seven sold in the following weeks – just under $16-million worth of sales.”We’ve heard every rumor ourselves – bankruptcy, Chapter 11, all the contractors have been pulled off the job. The only thing that we haven’t heard is that the partners are preparing to duel each other,” Hatle said.”Go to the title company. Check the records. There is no notice of default,” he adds.Hatle said the rumors likely started when the company fell about 60 days behind in completing those first 200 lots. There are a variety of issues affecting construction at Brightwater and other projects in the valley. An oil shortage has contractors worried about diesel fuel for large trucks; and asphalt is in short supply.Hatle also speculates that the rumors of problems were prompted by the developer’s decision to put all of their construction resources on the west side (the first nine holes of the golf course) to get that aspect of the project finished. Work was temporarily suspended on the nine golf holes on the east side of Valley Road.”It made sense to focus our energies,” Hatle said.That meant some construction employees who had been working on the golf holes on the east side were not needed for about 60 days. Hatle said the employees who were let go had been working on a temporary contract through a labor supplier. At times, Hatle says there has been as many as 150 construction workers on the project.He invited anyone who wants to take a look at the project to come out on any work day.”Come see the work that’s getting done; see our sales,” he said.Vail Daily, Vail, Colorado
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