Commission likes LPS plans

County group continues its praise of proposed subdivisions


The Routt County Planning Commission on Thursday continued its praise for developers' plans for land-preservation subdivisions.

At Thursday's Planning Commission meeting, Steam--boat Mountain Holdings LLC presented its plans to build 19 lots on 98 acres and dedicate a 416-acre parcel as open space on the More Ranch.

The proposed development, Steamboat River Ranch, is north of Routt County Road 18, east of Colorado Highway 131 and southeast of the recently approved Lafarge gravel pit.

"I think it is another job welldone," Planning Commissioner John Ayer said about the plan.

The county's LPS program allows developers to build more homes than allowed by the state's standard 35-acre agricultural zoning. In return, the developer agrees to have smaller and more clustered lots and to leave the remaining land as open space.

Earlier this month, planning commissioners praised plans for 55 residential lots on 1,717 acres north of Silver Spur and off C.R. 42. Members of the team who built Storm Mountain Ranch are proposing the development, known as Elk Mountain Ranch, which would have home sites on 346 acres and shared open land for the remaining 1,371 acres.

"It is very comforting the LPS's are finally beginning to make sense. We are eliminating, wherever we can, 35-acre (parcels)," Planning Commission Chairmain Don Alperti said. "A lot of work went into developing that proposal."

The plans for the Steamboat River Ranch show 5-acre home sites, which would be in the middle of the property and clustered around a hay meadow. Because they will be located in a canyon-like area, most of the homes should barely be visible or not visible at all from U.S. Highway 40 or Colo. 131, the planning report indicates.

Planning Commissioner Jay Gallagher said developers did a good job of skirting around the wetlands.

The large open-space parcel will continue to be used for agriculture and wildlife habitat. That parcel also will be allowed to house the ranch manager's residence, a recreational-vehicle storage building, a lodge, cabins, a parking area and the cabin and agricultural buildings used by Windwalker Tours.

The developers will have to get an administrative, special-use or conditional-use permit for the RV-storage building and the lodge and guest cabins, which is tied to developing a nearby pond.

Land planner Peter Patten, who is working on the project, said the hope is to start construction on the site by the spring.

-- To reach Christine Metz call 871-4229

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