Chamonix could be Vail’s ‘amazing little neighborhood’ |

Chamonix could be Vail’s ‘amazing little neighborhood’

VAIL, Colorado ” Tom Mullen hopes a fire station-affordable housing project in West Vail might be a spark that ignites other redevelopment in the neighborhood’s decades-old commercial area.

“I think I’m excited to see some things happen in West Vail,” said Mullen, owner of West Vail Liquor Mart.

Mullen attended a neighborhood meeting a couple of weeks ago where town officials gathered input on the so-called “Chamonix project.”

The town has amassed 4.85 acres just above the West Vail roundabout that it wants to use for a fire station and affordable housing. The land includes the site of the old Wendy’s restaurant.

A “master plan” for the land is now in the works, with an architect and a land-use planner drawing up designs.

Mullen said he also likes that the West Vail area is getting a fire station.

“Having emergency services closer to my business will be a nice amenity,” he said.

Neighborhood resident Bob Armour envisioned a “little community” on the land, which is slated to include one-, two- and three-bedroom “affordable” condos. The neighborhood is excited about the project, he said.

“We’re looking forward to it,” he said.

At the recent meeting, residents said they’d like to see sidewalks for the area, including ones that connect to the West Vail commercial area. They also suggested a

new bus stop.

Vail Town Councilman Mark Gordon said the town should maximize the amount of affordable housing it can get on the property while still making sure it fits in with the neighborhood. And the housing needs to be “livable,” Gordon said. That means lots of storage space for residents, he said.

“It’s going to be an amazing little neighborhood,” Gordon said. “It has to fit into the lifestyle of our valley. Something that people want to live in.”

Vail council members have said the town needs more employee housing. Redevelopment is creating more and more jobs, while second-home owners are buying more and more homes once occupied by workers.

Staff Writer Edward Stoner can be reached at 748-2929 or

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