Eagle County schedules special hearing for 120-unit 6 West Apartments proposal in Edwards
October 15, 2017
EAGLE — An Edwards-area proposal for 120 rental units earmarked specifically for local employees will get its own, special hearing before the Eagle County Board of Commissioners this week.
The 6 West Apartments will be the subject of a special Thursday, Oct. 19, public hearing, signaling the county's interest in the project and the county commissioners' desire to help it get off the ground.
Developer Gore Creek Partners LLC has proposed the 6 West Apartments planned unit development at a 5.727-acre site located south of U.S. Highway 6 and immediately west of the Eagle River Mobile Home park. The proposal calls for one-, two- and three-bedroom units located in nine buildings on the site. The maximum building height proposed is 45 feet.
The property proposal also includes plans for a 3,000-square-foot community building with amenities including a fitness center, business center, cyber/coffee cafe and indoor-outdoor areas for socializing. Also planned are a dog park, small playground and bike and ski tuning areas.
"Public benefits of the PUD include providing deed-restricted rental housing opportunities within the Edwards area that benefit the entire community and developed by the private sector. Eagle County has indicated that there is high demand for this type of multiple-family housings, and 100 percent of the units will be deed restricted for occupancy by the local workforce," reads the 6 West Apartments application.
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According to planner Dominic Mauriello, rental prices at the 6 West units will be around $1,300 per month for one-bedroom units, $1,900 per month for two-bedroom units and $2,300 for three-bedroom units.
Public hearing support
In its respective review of the proposal, both the Eagle County Community Development staff and the Eagle County Planning Commission recommended approval of the plan. At the initial public hearing for the proposal, held Tuesday, Oct. 3, there was no public opposition to the plan.
Local businessman Steve Lindstrom said as the valley looks to solve its workforce housing deficit, a change in thinking is required.
"I think we, as a community, need to recognize this is resident housing," he said.
He urged the county to partner with the 6 West team to make the project a success.
"Let's let the private sector help us," Lindstrom said. "This is what doing something about our housing problem looks like."
Mike Brumbaugh, the owner of Venture Sports, said he was willing to sign a rental agreement at 6 West even before the project is built because finding housing for employees has become such a problem.
"I am really, really nervous about where I am going to find employees," he said.
Tabled until Oct. 19
While the county commissioners noted they supported the plan to bring on additional workforce housing units, they did have questions about proposed water rights for the development, as well as part of the 6 West proposal dealing with property tax exemption requests.
The developers requested the exemptions as a way to keep the project affordable, but the commissioners were reluctant to sign off on the exemptions without discussing the proposal with the affected special districts.
The unresolved issues regarding the water and property tax concerns prompted the commissioners to table the proposal until Oct. 19. The special hearing will get underway at 11 a.m.