Vail’s Timber Ridge redo may wait until next summer
VAIL – Vail’s aging Timber Ridge complex – the largest employee housing complex in town – may stand for another year.
A $60 million plan to rebuild the eastern half of the 10-acre property is still going through town approvals, and it will probably be mid-July at the earliest before the necessary hurdles have been cleared for the project to begin construction, said George Ruther, community development director for the town of Vail.
If the start of construction is delayed until late summer or early fall, the project wouldn’t start until the spring of 2011, said Darren Woody, managing partner of Vail Timber Ridge LLC, the developer.
“Our hope is to start this summer, but the actual start date would really be determined when get through the complexity of closing,” Woody said. “We’re still hoping that we can start in the next few months or so, but if things delay too much, we might push the start date to next spring.”
The project would create new 360 one- and two-bedroom apartments, along with a five-story parking garage, a 5,000-square-foot “clubhouse” and a fitness center, Woody said.
Construction is expected to last 17 to 18 months.
The town of Vail would lease the land to the developer under a long-term lease that would last up to 90 years. The developer would pay Vail $11 million in the deal.
Vail Timber Ridge LLC, of El Paso, Texas, was chosen to build the project last May after the town issued a request for proposals. The developer will have the option of building on the second half of the property, as well.
The builder still need approvals from Vail’s Design Review Board and Planning and Environmental Commission. It also needs to hammer out a developer improvement agreement with the town, and get building permits.
Timber Ridge was built in 1981 and has 198 units, each housing three or four people. The town of Vail bought the complex for $20 million in 2003 to preserve it as employee housing.
Vail Resorts leases most of the units for its employees.
Timber Ridge has leaky roofs, loose railings and missing floorboards, according to a recent report. Over the next seven years, almost $2.5 million in improvements will be needed at the complex, the report said.
The town is holding off on some repairs, including a roof repair, until it knows if the project will get torn down, said Town Manager Stan Zemler.
Vail has entertained several proposals over the last few years to redevelop Timber Ridge. In 2008, the Town Council abandoned a $107 million proposal from Open Hospitality Group/Hillwood Capital, a Texas development group, to redevelop Timber Ridge. A Vail Resorts proposal for the complex’s redevelopment was rejected in 2007.
Staff Writer Edward Stoner can be reached at 970-748-2929 or firstname.lastname@example.org.