Building boom surging upvalley |

Building boom surging upvalley

Cliff Thompson
Preston Utley/Vail DailyBuilding and construction activity remains strong all across the county.

EAGLE COUNTY – After 25 years of construction activity moving downvalley, there are signs that construction in the eastern half of the county is starting to rebound.The number of building permits issued in Vail during the first quarter of 2005 has already exceeded all of 2004. Vail is in the midst of a $1 billion renovation, called the “Vail Renaissance,” that will see the expansion and renovation of 20 buildings in Vail Village, Lionshead and elsewhere. Building permits are generally acknowledged to be one indicator of the vitality of the local economy. The number of permits issued by Eagle County the first three months of 2005 for areas outside incorporated towns lags slightly behind last year. The county issued 128 building permits from January through the end of March – two less than during the same period last year. The valuation of the buildings this year lags farther behind the same period last year – $43 million versus $52 million. That’s also way beneath booming 2001’s valuation of $127.28 million on 41 single-family-home permits and 61 multi-family permits.Real estate sales activity over the last year shows the most active market segment is in homes priced at $500,000 or less. Construction continues on several subdivisions in Eagle and Gypsum containing properties in that price range.So far in 2005 the county has issued 24 single-family residences and 31 multi-family building permits with the remainder of the building permits – 73 – for remodeling or commercial space.

VailVail is booming. Now in its first year of a five-year-long renovation, the town issued 60 permits with a total construction value estimated at $125.5 million. That equals the total valuation for all of last year. Most of the permits were for renovation and expansion of large commercial projects, totaling 95,000 square-feet.The town issued 11 single-family and duplex permits during the first quarter with a construction value of $12.6 million, and 24 permits for residential remodeling projects. Last year, the town issued 72 building permits and 137 permits for remodeling.Avon

Avon issued nine building permits and 19 remodeling and other miscellaneous permits, valued at $4.18 million in the first three months of 2005. That’s the same number of building permits issued during the first quarter of 2004. However the value of the construction last year was nearly seven times greater at $28.9 million. Those numbers should grow as the Village at Avon begins to add both commercial space and residences over the next two years. When completed, the 1,800-acre development will have 2,400 residences and 650,000 square feet of commercial space, which includes the 300,000 square feet at the Wal-Mart Supercenter and The Home Depot.EagleThe number of building permits issued by Eagle during the first quarter – 77 – jumped 42 percent over the same period last year. The valuation of the construction was $11.2 million.Those include 40 permits for single-family homes, eight for multi-family homes and 14 residential- and commercial-remodeling projects.Those numbers could change dramatically in the next year if the Red Mountain Ranch east of town is annexed and construction begins. The developer is planning both commercial and residential development around a large retailer such as a Costco. The development will include several hundred homes.

GypsumDuring the first quarter of 2005 Gypsum issued eight single-family permits, one commercial permit and three permits for remodeling projects. Total construction value of the projects was $1.94 million. That’s significantly less than those issued during the same period last year, when the town issued 30 – 14 for new single-family residences, one commercial project and 15 home and commercial remodeling projects.Staff Writer Cliff Thompson can be reached at 949-0555, ext. 450, or, Colorado

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