Plans are in the works to begin renovating the condominium building behind the Harbor Hotel. Work should be under way by summertime.
The building, which is part of the Harbor Hotel complex that changed ownership last fall, will be gutted to transform the existing 24 condos and 22 motel rooms into 24, one-, two- and three-bedroom condo units. Exterior renovations also are planned.
Thursday night, the city Architecture Review Commission approved final development plans for the project, known as the Old Town Residence.
Jim Cook, who is working on the project through Colorado Group Realty, said work will begin as soon as the city approves the project and a building permit is granted. He hopes the buildings can be occupied by late November or early December.
Eight units already have been reserved in the building at the corner of Yampa Avenue and Eighth Street, Cook said. The buildings will hold 14 two-bedroom units, eight three-bedroom units and two one-bedroom units.
The condos are attracting interest as primary residences and as second homes, Cook said.
Because the project is in the heart of downtown, Cook sees it as providing the first real urban residential space in Steamboat. He believes the time has come for that kind of urban development.
"In the downtown area, full-time residents and part-time residents will bring more excitement and possibly dollars, which turns into sales tax, and sales tax is what pays for infrastructure," Cook said.
Prices for the units will range from $175,000 to $250,000 for the larger two- and three-bedroom units.
The Old Town Residence building was built in 1970 and formally subdivided into condominiums in the early 1980s. When approved for condominium use, the units mainly were rented on a nightly basis in conjunction with the Harbor Hotel.
Even though the proposed renovated condo units will be sold separately, under city zoning regulations they still can be used on a nightly or weekly rental basis.
One of the biggest changes to the outside of the building will be to emphasize the gable roof on side of the building facing Yampa Avenue. Upgrading the trusses on both ends of the building and adding a wooden truss to the middle of the building are planned as part of the renovation.
The Yampa Avenue side of the building also will be used as the main entrance to the condos and will have balconies.
The renovation plans for the exterior also call for new stone veneer, new stucco siding and new wood siding.
The Fort Collins-based Harbor Hotel Group, LLC, purchased the hotel last fall. Longtime owner George Hussey sold the hotel for $3.9 million.
Cook said the renovation of the condominium building is a different project than the upgrades planned for the hotel on the corner of Lincoln Avenue and Seventh Street.
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