Gondola gets the go ahead from Avon
AVON – In a month, people in Avon may see the telltale backhoes and dump trucks of development as East West Partners breaks ground on what will one day be the Riverfront Village. The Avon Town Council has approved the $500 million project on the 19-acre “Confluence” parcel along the Eagle River and Avon Road.
“I think it’s a win-win situation for everybody involved,” said Mayor Ron Wolfe. “I think it’ll be the centerpiece project for the whole west town center.”The development will have a gondola connection to Beaver Creek Mountain, shops and restaurants, in addition to a 5.5-acre public park and bike path. East West Partners also has promised to preserve views of Beaver Creek from Avon when building. “The gondola connection is the catalyst Avon has been looking for to stimulate greater investment and energize the downtown commercial core,” said Town Manager Larry Brooks. “Avon’s commercial core now will become ‘beachfront’ property.”The development will also include condos, timeshares and hundreds of hotel rooms as part of the Westin Riverfront Resort and Spa, which East-West Partners says will be built to green building standards.
East West Partners will spend about $23 million on the project, while Avon will chip in $2.5 million in tax breaks and another $857,000 to build two railroad crossings to connect downtown Avon to the village. Although the project has had several critics, councilors maintain it was a fair deal.”Was it perfect? No. Is it good enough? Absolutely,” Wolfe said. Councilwoman Debbie Buckley said the development is a better deal for the town than some realize. “I think it’s going to bring Avon to the next level,” she said. “I don’t think we really gave that much to the developer.”
Staff Writer Nicole Frey can be reached at 949-0555, ext. 14621, or firstname.lastname@example.org. Vail, Colorado
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