Sunburst shifts to Meadows

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Development of the first phase of a proposed 900-acre subdivision will be shifted to Hayden's Golden Meadows area, according to radically revised sketch plans for Sunburst Park North.

The revised plans, which were submitted to the Hayden Planning Commission on Thursday, are the result of work with a town-hired, developer-subsidized planning consultant.

Developer Ron Sills said he was upset when he first learned his company, 4S Development, would have to pay for a town-contracted planner to help with the first phase of the proposed 900-acre Sunburst Ranch subdivision. But after his first meeting with planning consultant Tim Katers, Sills decided having a planner was a good idea. Katers made suggestions that Sills had not thought of before and on which Hayden town officials and the 4S developers agreed, Sills said.

"It just sort of clicked," Katers said.

At Thursday night's Hayden Planning Commission meeting, Katers revealed the revised plans for the first phase of the project, Sunburst Park North.

After the Planning Commission expressed many concerns with the older plan, and after Katers walked the site with the developers and Hayden officials, Katers said it was more logical to move the site of Sunburst Park North from its previously planned location near Routt County Road 53 to a location directly south of Golden Meadows and Sagewood subdivisions.

"My experience tells me, when a community grows, it grows from what you've got," Katers said. Existing waterlines and sewer lines at the nearby subdivision make it more logical to build Sunburst Park North near them, Katers said.

The revised plans include mitigation measures for problems the existing subdivisions' residents could face if traffic significantly increases on those roads. The plans he submitted included a main road to connect to C.R. 53, which he said would be the main artery to the subdivision.

The revised plan for Sunburst Park North, which is meant to provide affordable housing, calls for 147 mobile homes and 45 modular homes and no longer includes a commercial segment, Katers said.

The commercial area would remain in its previously planned location and be developed in a subsequent phase of Sunburst Ranch.

The Planning Commission gave suggestions for minor issues such as emergency-vehicle access and landscaping but had no problems with the infrastructure proposed in the plan.

Town Manager Rob Straebel said he was concerned that not enough homes in the park would be owner occupied and wanted to know the available financing options for the mobile homes. He said he wanted to keep the mobile homes affordable.

"We need to do some homework on it, Straebel said. "We want to make sure appropriate financing is available; it is an important component."

-- To reach Nick Foster call 871-4204

or e-mail nfoster@steamboatpilot.com

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