Government tracker: Vail Council approves design for new Solar Vail apartments
Who: Vail Town Council, Tuesday, July 17.
Present: Kevin Foley, Greg Moffet, Jenn Bruno, Kim Langmaid, Jen Mason and Mayor Dave Chapin. Council member Travis Coggin was absent for the evening meeting.
Issue: Helping wildlife across Interstate 70.
Who they talked to: Vail Environmental Sustainability Manager Kristen Bertuglia
What they talked about: Bertuglia provided an update of a recent tour with the Safe Passages for Wildlife organization. Bertuglia told council members that of potential crossing sites in Eagle County, several are in or near Vail, including Vail Pass, the Red Sandstone area and Dowd Junction.
Langmaid, who often bicycles from her home in Vail to her office in Avon, said the Dowd Junction area has been particularly hazardous for wildlife — especially deer. Langmaid said she and others have been pushing for additional wildlife fencing in the Dowd Junction area.
Bertuglia said there have been discussions about extending the valley’s wildlife fencing into Dowd Junction as soon as 2019.
What’s next: Bertuglia said funding will be needed.
Issue: An appeal of a tie vote by the Vail Design Review Board regarding the new Solar Vail apartments.
Who they talked to: Chris Neubecker, interim director of the Vail Community Development Department.
What they talked about: Sonnenalp Properties’ plan to tear down the existing 24-unit Solar Vail apartments and replace that structure with 65 units hit a snag with the five-member Design Review Board.
With one member missing, that board deadlocked on a decision regarding the exterior design of the new apartments. That non-decision was appealed to the Vail Town Council, which quickly voted to approve the design.
How they voted: 6-0 to approve.
What’s next: Tear-down and construction. The new apartments are expected to be ready by late 2019.
Issue: Meeting with the Vail Local Marketing District Advisory Council.
Who they talked to: Advisory council members Beth Slifer, John Dawsey and Laurie Mullen.
What they talked about: In addition to an update about the town’s summer marketing efforts, Slifer noted that both lodging occupancy and daily rates increased in June of this year over the same month in 2017.
For June, occupancy was up 8.8 percent, with a 2.2 percent increase in the average daily rate. That compares favorably with other mountain resorts. Around the region, the average occupancy increase was 8.1 percent, with an average daily rate increase of 3.2 percent.
What’s next: We’ll see what July brings.
The acquisition extends a strategy of buying ski areas near big cities, with the hopes that local skiers will buy Epic Passes and visit the company’s owned and partner resorts across the country and world.