Vail civic area plan input session set for April 17 |

Vail civic area plan input session set for April 17

Daily staff report
Town of Vail officials are in the first part of planning the future of the town's "civic area," which includes the town hall, Lionshead Parking Structure, Dobson Ice Arena and the Vail Public Library.

VAIL — An open house on April 17 and a series of short, interactive surveys at will be available to collect comments and feedback from the community during the next phase of the town of Vail civic area planning process, which extends through April 28.

The civic area planning process has been underway since December of 2018 and has most recently identified a series of community-driven design concepts for the five study sites: Dobson Ice Arena, Vail Public Library, Lionshead Parking and Transportation Center, charter bus lot and the Vail Municipal Building complex.

The concepts were presented by the project team during an April 2 Vail Town Council meeting. The design illustrations ranged from big ideas, such as exploring the charter bus lot east of the Lionshead parking structure as a centerpiece for a variety of civic uses, to more modest improvements such as adding a second floor to the library.

An overview of the various concepts and a question and answer session will take place at the April 17 open house which is scheduled from 4 to 6 p.m. in the Grand View room, located on the third level of the Lionshead Welcome Center. The presentation begins at 4:15 p.m. Free parking is available in the Lionshead parking structure after 3 p.m. The open house will also include an interactive opportunity to use the platform to view a series of short videos and answer a few questions on the concepts identified for each of the sites. 

The interactive survey on will collect responses from the community through April 28 and will include questions designed to identify how potential ideas address community needs and interests for improvements in the civic area. This approach allows the community to quickly understand the key attributes of each site, community feedback received and potential solutions identified by the project team.

On May 21, the council will review the public input collected during the April engagement period and begin discussing potential improvements within the study area. Looking ahead, the council will discuss identifying a preferred concept in July, which would be incorporated into a master plan for review by the Vail Planning and Environmental Commission and town council later in the year.

Completion of the civic area plan has been identified as a high priority by the Vail Town Council. Upon adoption, the plan will provide guidance on future decision-making, funding and implementation of improvements to the civic area.

To provide additional structure to the planning process, the following goals have been adopted:

  • Identify the community’s opinions of how to best utilize the land within the defined study area for the civic area plan; 
  • Evaluate and comprehend the issues, opportunities and constraints that will influence the development of the civic area, including the identification of potential highest and best uses;
  • Prepare a plan that is viable, is reflective of the community’s goals, is economically feasible and is responsive to the site and the surrounding neighborhoods, and;
  • Define strategies to guide future decision-making and the implementation of improvements to the civic area that will establish vibrant, aesthetically pleasing and thoughtfully designed places that will serve the needs of the local community and guests.

The majority of the study area is contained within a Tax Increment Finance District, established in 2005, and represents the last phase of a planning effort that has included adoption of the Lionshead Redevelopment Master Plan in 1998 and related district-funded improvements to include construction of a new transit center and welcome center, streetscape improvements, a remodel of the library, guest service enhancements, reconstruction of the Lionshead parking entry and construction of the Zeke M. Pierce Skatepark. Most recently, district funds have been used to fund the town’s portion of the Sandstone Underpass.

The district will expire in 2030 in accordance with state law following a 25-year collection period. The money is available to secure bonding for future projects in the district at the direction of the Vail Town Council sitting as the Vail Reinvestment Authority.  

For more information, call Vail Community Development Department Director Matt Gennett, 970-479-2146 or email

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