Haymeadow development trims its plan for Eagle Town Board review

EAGLE — A year after the Eagle Town Board approved its concept but slashed back its density, the Haymeadow development has submitted its revised plan.

The Haymeadow development team submitted its planned urban development plan and preliminary subdivision plan for the community’s first phase on Aug. 19. The submittals set in motion the final stages of the Haymeadow community’s approvals.

In October of 2012, the Town Board approved the Haymeadow development concept, but trimmed 192 units from the overall density. The Haymeadow project had originally proposed 979 residential units — multi-family and single family dwellings — on the property located southeast of town in the Brush Creek Valley adjacent to the Eagle Pool and Ice Rink.

‘Conservation-oriented development’

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Ric Newman, partner and leader of the Haymeadow project for the past nine years, describes Haymeadow as a “conservation-oriented development” characterized by large open space tracts that comprise the major amenity of the development. Newman said 60 percent of the land contained in Haymeadow is classified as open space. The Haymeadow proposal includes 11.5 miles of recreational trails and a wildlife migration corridor ranging from 500 to 1,000 feet across that runs north to south across the property.

The revised plan shows an overall reduction of density by 20 percent: 787 total units, down from 979 submitted in the sketch plan phase.

“This is the culmination of nearly a decade of work by our team which included patient listening and collaboration with town of Eagle officials, staff and Eagle residents,” said Alan Cohen, Eagle County resident and CEO of Abrika Properties.

“I’m very pleased with the plan that we submitted,” Newman said. “I believe that it embraces Eagle’s vision of livability and small-town character. The plan’s rich amenities will also further enhance the desirability of Eagle.”

‘Conservation oriented’

Newman noted that he actively participated in the most recent revision of the Eagle Area Community Plan in 2010; and subsequently the Haymeadow design was developed in accordance with the town’s revised master plan. He said the Haymeadow plan shows neighborhoods with the highest density clustered near Eagle’s town center. For example, neighborhood A, the area with the highest density (217 units), will be built on the western-most portion of the property near the pool and ice rink.

Other master plan elements are incorporated into the Haymeadow design, including the idea of conservation-oriented design, which leaves more than 60 percent of the community as open space and provides 500-1,000-foot corridors for wildlife movement throughout the property. Newman said the development team worked to create open view corridors and maintain the character of Brush Creek Road. Other details, such as the orientation of home sites to maximize solar exposure, further illustrate Haymeadow’s commitment to conservation oriented design, Newman said.

The plan includes sites for a firehouse, K-8 school and a “field of dreams,” which is a large, workable series of fields adjacent to the pool and ice rink. These fields can be used to host sports tournaments that drive tourism revenue as well as provide more space for Western Eagle County Metropolitan Recreation District sports programs and school sports or events.

Gathering place

Trailhead Park, another amenity included in the plan, will serve as a gathering place for Haymeadow residents and the Eagle community as a whole. The park has a pavilion that features a commercial kitchen for events such as weddings, reunions and birthday parties. Also incorporated into the area is a large dog park, two beaches (one for kids and one for dogs), an adventure playground complete with bouldering area, a tot lot for younger children and a spray park for cooling off on hot summer days. On the other side of the park, transitioning to a passive recreation setting, are two ponds and community gardens with views of the natural wetlands.

The Haymeadow plan includes roughly 16 miles of trails for cyclists and pedestrians. The original sketch plan designated 11.5 miles of hard and soft paths that connected neighborhoods and parks within Haymeadow and interconnected with existing trails leading to downtown and Eagle Ranch.

High School Championships

Five additional miles of trail were added through the collaboration between the town of Eagle and Haymeadow that created the trail that will serve as the 2013 Colorado High School Cycling League’s State Championship race course.

The trail has quickly become one of Eagle’s most popular locales for mountain biking, trail running and hiking. Cohen and Newman granted an easement to the property’s hilly northern border and the town allocated money to hire professional trail builders to design and build portions of the trail.

The Hardscrabble Trails Coalition, a local nonprofit responsible for building many of Eagle’s existing trails, was also heavily involved in the project.

“The collaboration between the town of Eagle and Haymeadow to build this trail is unprecedented,” said Kate Rau, executive director of the Colorado High School Cycling League. “Never have two entities worked together like this to attract our event. The result is an outstanding trail for the state championships and for residents and destination riders to enjoy for years to come.”

On the economic side, Newman said the Haymeadow build out, which will span 15-20 years, will create approximately 460 jobs annually and infuse $18.5 million into Eagle’s economy per year through the course of development.

“As the real estate market in Eagle continues to recover and existing inventory becomes further reduced, especially in Eagle Ranch, we feel that the time for Haymeadow to move forward is now,” Newman said. “We remain committed to following appropriate market timing and prudently controlling the introduction of new homes.”

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