Lionshead makeover is a good deal |

Lionshead makeover is a good deal

Vail Daily Editorial Board
Vail CO, Colorado

From this view, plans for a new and improved Lionshead parking structure couldn’t look much better.

Almost 1,000 more parking spots. New stores and restaurants. A conference center. Luxury hotels.

Did we mention the 1,000 more parking spots?

The best part of this “project plan” – which the Vail Town Council approved last week ” is that it accomplishes many of the town’s goals without forcing the town to dip into taxpayers’ pockets to pay for it.

Open Hospitality Partners/Hillwood Capital, developers of the project, are promising to increase the Lionshead parking garage capacity from 1,150 spaces to 2,149. They also vow that, during construction, parking will not drop below its current capacity.

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But while the Town Council has given the developer the green light, there are a few details that need to be considered before the project can go forward.

For one, Vail Resorts must lift its deed restriction on the property before the developer can break ground.

VR should consider that Open Hospitality is willing to foot the bill to give Vail more parking ” something that will certainly improve the guest experience in winter ” and lift the restriction.

The council also should be sure to consider the number of jobs the project would create, and not shy away from enforcing the town’s recently adopted affordable housing rules that ensure development pays for at least some of the impacts it creates on our community.

Still, Lionshead is in dire need of a makeover.

Councilman Kevin Foley makes a good point that residents are growing tired of all the construction construction cranes.

But we can think of one thing that’s even more annoying than dodging construction during the winter: having to tromp a mile down the frontage road in ski boots because the parking structures are full.

Vail Daily Editorial Board

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