Vail Daily letter: Critic of development proposal
July 10, 2010
What Ms. Jalbert failed to realize (in her recent letter to the editor) is that when Mr. Mueller presented his proposal to the county on June 16, the proposal did not even meet the minimum standards for the county to approve his proposal.
According to the planning commissioners, they required that sketch plans meet a minimum of 13 standards they use to evaluate projects and proposals. Mr. Mueller’s plan failed to meet the minimum standards in seven out the required 13 standards the county uses to evaluate sketch plans.
The county planners had many concerns regarding the components of Mr. Mueller’s sketch plan for these tracts, including open-space deficiencies of 2.47 acres, lack of commitment to service from the Eagle River Water and Sanitation District, restrictive notes on all three tracts within the proposal, architectural concerns, dispersed affordable housing throughout the development and parking concerns. Eagle County Engineering Department responded with concerns regarding impact of the Dodd Ditch, lack of drainage study and lack of consolidated traffic study.
Mr. Mueller’s sketch plan calls for a five-story structure consisting of 56 high-end condos 0 feet from the houses located next to Tract T. Tract T is only 4.27 acres in size. There would be little or no easement between this high-density structure and a low-density subdivision, such as the South Forty. The entire hillside will be all hardscape: buildings and parking. The height-requirement code for buildings in Edwards is 35 feet, and Mr. Mueller is also asking the county to approve the additional 15 feet he needs in order to build the 56 high-end condominium units he wants on this small parcel of land behind Edwards Corner.
This is down from Mr. Mueller’s original proposal, where he was requesting the county allow him to build a structure 70 feet high on the Tract T parcel.
I just don’t see this proposal resulting in a significant improvement for Edwards. The staff report provided by Eagle County Planning Commission said the benefits of this plan would be that it will provide very high-end housing opportunities in the core area of Edwards. The disadvantages of the project they listed as:
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• The project would contribute to a decrease in the level of service at points on Edwards Village Boulevard.
• The project would require several variations from the county’s road improvement standards, mainly due to the lack of dual access to serve the site.
• The project would remove the 4.5 acres of platted open space, albeit privately owned, in the Edwards core area. This open space was created in 1985 as part of an overall system of open space tracts that were part of the Edwards Village Master Plan.
• The project does not meet the minimum standards for open space, according to Eagle County land-use regulations.