Vail Council opens door for different development proposal in East Vail
By a 4-3 vote, the council delays approving a term sheet for the town to purchase from Triumph Development
This story will be updated.
VAIL — The Vail Town Council on Tuesday had two options regarding possible development on a parcel in East Vail. By delaying action on one option, council members opened the door for the second.
By a 4-3 vote, council members voted to delay approving a term sheet for the town to purchase from Triumph Development. Under terms of the deal, the town would have purchased the entire 23.3-acre parcel. That parcel, rezoned in 2017, is now divided into a 5.3-acre section for housing, with another 17.9 acres zoned for preservation.
Under the proposed deal, the town would have purchased the property for $4 million. After 10 years, Triumph would re-purchase the property used for housing for $2.5 million. The remaining $1.5 million would pay for permanent deed restrictions on 40 units out of a possible 130 to 140 units. The town would also retain ownership of the larger, protected parcel.
Vail Housing Director George Ruther told council members they had two options with the deal: Accept the purchase deal, which would deed-restrict 100 percent of all the units on the site, or allow Triumph to submit a proposal in which 30 percent of all units on the parcel would be available at free-market, unrestricted rates as allowed by the parcel’s zoning. Ruther said the 30 percent free-market allowance allows developers to subsidize deed-restricted units.
After about 90 minutes of presentations and public comment, council member Kim Langmaid moved to delay voting on the proposed deal until Triumph submitted a specific plan for the property, as well as mitigation plans to protect the small herd of bighorn sheep that uses part of the parcel as critical winter range.
That motion passed on a 4-3 vote. Langmaid, along with council members Kevin Foley, Jen Mason and Mayor Dave Chapin voted for the delay. Council members Travis Coggin, Greg Moffet and Jenn Bruno voted against the motion.
Mason said striking a deal for the land before any proposal went to the Vail Planning and Environmental Commission was “out of sequence.” Foley said he worried that buying the land before a project went to the planning board could prejudice that group to vote in favor of a plan.
After the vote, Triumph Chief Operating Officer Michael O’Connor said the company will proceed with a proposal.
We put a question to the council tonight, and we heard from four members they’re not interested in answering that question,” O’Connor said.
O’Connor added that Triumph will now work on a proposal that the company can control. That most likely means the company will submit a plan that has 30 percent free-market units.
Vail Daily Business Editor Scott Miller can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 970-748-2930.
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