Saturday, February 15, 2003
Steamboat Springs A 1,117-acre ranch just west of Steamboat Springs could be divided into 39 homes, an 800-acre ranch and possibly a golf course.
Brent Romick brought his plan for the 1,117-acre Kettell Ranch before the Routt County commissioners and Planning Commission. The land is almost three miles west of Steamboat, north of Routt County Road 42 and just north of Silver Spur.
Romick said plans for the project are not finalized. He is trying to find a balance between how many homes the county allows on the site and giving homeowners the privacy and space they want.
"My philosophy is to not ask too much of the property," Romick said.
Under county guidelines, Romick could fit 31 homes on 35-acre lots. By preserving 800 acres, Romick can also add eight more homes, or one home for every 100 acres preserved.
The plan that came before the county showed a cluster of 39 homes on 317 acres with home sites averaging eight to 12 acres.
Close to National Forest and ranch land, Romick said he wants to provide a development that gives homeowners the space and corridor views that come with living outside of town.
"We want to preserve as much of the agricultural ground and history as possible," Romick said. "That is very important to me."
The land is currently owned by Bob Kettell, but was first homesteaded at the turn of the century by the Kline family.
The 800-acre parcel is planned for a ranch site. Currently the land produces alfalfa with areas of native grass hay meadows. In the past 20 years, Romick said, the land has been used more as a farm than a ranch and at one time grew wheat, oats and barley.
Romick has plans to develop a ranch land management program that will allow for both cattle and horse production.
The project is planned for three phases and is to be developed north to south. The final stage of the project is being looked at for a potential golf course in the property's southern boundary.
During the county commissioners hearing, Romick said developing a golf course was not his style of project, but needed to be included in the early planning stages if a golf course was at all a possibility.
The plan also includes a central water system and road network off of County Road 42.
The elevation of the ranch ranges from 6,600 feet to 7,345 feet. In his application to the county, Romick said six small to large ridge areas exist on the property, which will allow home sites to be hidden from adjacent properties.
The application also said the development would be sensitive in the project's design to mitigate area migratory routes and winter grazing areas for elk, deer, grouse and water fowl.
The property also will have 2,800 feet of river frontage and Romick has plans to build ponds, a feature that he likes to include in all of his development projects.
Romick, who has merged the Romick Ranch Division with Prudential, has also developed Creek Ranch, another land preservation project in Routt County.