Oak Creek passes new parking requirements

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After almost a month of debating the current land-use codes and parking requirements, the Oak Creek Town Board unanimously passed several new requirements Thursday.

After a Town Board meeting in May, Yampa Valley Housing Authority officials brought up several issues they had with off-street parking requirements the town was trying to enforce on their new affordable-housing projects.

The Town Board agreed that there was room for interpretation with the way the codes are written and decided to hold a work session June 15 to refine and clarify the codes.

During Thursday night's meet--ing, the Town Board approved a new minimum parking requirement for all new homes, businesses and institutions.

The new off-street parking requirements are: two parking spaces for a single-family detached home and one space per bedroom for a townhouse, duplex or apartment or as many as to two spaces per unit. Ideally, businesses would be required to provide one space for every 500 square feet of gross floor area, but that can be determined on a case-by-case basis. Parking requirements for all churches, business parks, industrial parks and other institutions will be determined on a case-by-case basis.

The requirements were charted during the June 15 work session, and all board members were satisfied with the new requirements.

Another issue the Town Board voted on was the size of buildable land lots in Oak Creek. The minimum lot size used to be 50 feet by 85 feet. Several community members said that was too small and that people were being allowed to build too many units on the lots.

After the work session, the town board decided to make the new lot size 50 feet by 125 feet, but owners of the old minimum-size lots would be grandfathered in. They would be allowed to raze their homes and build new ones.

"It's as cool a compromise as I've ever heard of," Mayor Kathy "Cargo" Rodeman said.

The Town Board also brought up possible nominations for a new water basin board created by Colorado House Bill 05-1177, known as the Colorado Water for the 21st Century Act. The new bill created nine basin roundtables covering all geographic areas in Colorado, including the Yampa-White Basin, which affects all of Routt County and the Yampa Valley.

The four municipalities that make up the county, Hayden, Oak Creek, Yampa and Steam--boat Springs, are being asked by July 15 to nominate one person from each water district in the county and one person from each municipality to discuss the water concerns for the area. From the larger board, two members will be elected to go to state meetings to discuss water use and development locally and statewide.

Town Board member John Crawford thought local concern about the water should stay local and that two people are not adequate to speak for the entire Yampa Valley.

"If you want to form a new water board, then do it, but right now we need to nominate people for this," Rodeman said.

Rodeman said she intends to call the few people the board has recognized as potential participants and ask them to help, because no one has volunteered for the position.

--To reach Alexis DeLaCruz, call 871-4234

or e-mail adelacruz@steamboatpilot.com

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