RV park west of Steamboat approved

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By the summer of 2005, Ray Selbe and his family hope their Eagle Soaring RV Park west of Steamboat Springs will be open for business.

The project was denied two years ago, but the Selbes recently returned to Routt County with a revised proposal. The Routt County Board of Commissioners approved the request in September, overturning the recommendation for denial that came from the Routt County Planning Commission in August.

"We're very pleased that they've approved it," Ray Selbe said about the county commissioners' decision.

Selbe said the recreational vehicle park is low impact because there are no permanent structures on the property -- the park office and showers will be moved during the winter -- and that the park fits well with the area's character.

"I think it goes well in the country setting," he said.

Not everyone agrees.

When the plan was presented at public meetings, several people spoke against it, including Troy Brookshire. Brookshire does not own property in the area of the RV park but served on the county Planning Commission for 10 years until 2002.

Brookshire said that he thinks it's critical that all property owners have the right to use their land as they see fit and that he would have agreed with a proposal that fell in line with the area's rural character.

But he said he felt this project would change the rural character of the area and poses serious safety issues with RVs pulling out onto U.S. Highway 40.

The RV park is proposed for a 23-acre piece of the Selbes' ranch, which is about two miles west of the Riverbend Cafe. The site has been used previously for cattle grazing and hay meadows, according to the family's permit application.

The park proposes 25 units, as well as a wigwam office, two shower and toilet trailers and significant landscaping.

Routt County Commissioner Nancy Stahoviak said the project has less than half of the originally proposed RV sites, and is farther from U.S. 40 with more landscaping than originally proposed. Plus, it will be used seasonally and won't have any permanent structures, she said.

"They took care of addressing every concern I had raised at that original meeting," Stahoviak said.

Also important to Stahoviak when approving the park is that it allows agricultural operators to supplement their income, and so helps preserve the county's ranching landscape and heritage.

Landowners who oppose such operations should find out what sorts of land uses are allowed in areas that are agriculture and forest rezoned districts, she said. That way they can be aware of what can happen near their neighborhoods.

Routt County Planner Mary Alice Page-Allen said the Selbe family has a lot of details to address and has to return to county planning with those updates before it can open the RV park.

-- To reach Susan Cunningham, call 871-4203 or e-mail sbacon@steamboatpilot.com

Comments

roamrice 7 years, 2 months ago

We had the opportunity to visit the Eagle Soaring RV Park under construction west of Steamboat Springs today. From the above article there has been considerable controversy about the effect this project will have on the area.

There are several items that I would like to comment on.

First, the layout of the park is very poor. The sites are too narrow for todays RV's, most have slideouts that are up to three feet wide on each side. Add this to an eight to nine and a half wide RV and the RV could be up to fifteen feet wide. The minimum center to center spacing for the lots should be at least 25 feet, a first class park will have a minimum of 40 feet.

The turning radius at the far end of the row of sites is too small for the larger motorhomes, and the "streets" are too narrow.

Second, the utilities are located at the "rear" of the site. Most RV parks have the utilities in the center of the lot where most RV's utility connections are loacated, and the layout dictates that instead of parking with the mountain view to the front of the RV, one would be headed into the hill.

Third,in your article it states that the office and rest rooms would be in trailers and not permanant structures. What sort of cliental is the owner trying to attract? And the park will be closed in the winter. Does the owner not realize that many skiers stay in their RV's in the winter in ski areas?

If the county commissisnors want ot see what a very good RV park layout is like they only have to go west on Highway 40 to the state park. It is a great place. The Eagle Soring park will degenerate into a "trailer park" and not be an asset to the Steamboat area.

Steamboat Springs, like many other communities, needs a first class RV park to accomidate the increasing number of people traveling in motorhomes, fifth wheels, and trailers.

A 12 year fulltime RVer,

Louis D. Rice

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