Harbor mulled

Planning Commission to look at hotel redevelopment plan

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A redevelopment plan for the Harbor Hotel will be reviewed in public for the first time tonight.

Steamboat Springs planning commissioners will comment about the redevelopment project, which is in the pre-application stage. Commissioners provide thoughts and direction on pre-applications but do not make formal decisions. The public will have a chance to comment on the pre-application, as well.

The project proposes a 118,951-square-foot building that would include 16 retail or restaurant units, with stores along Lincoln Avenue and Yampa Street. There also would be 26 residential condominium units, 79 parking spaces on two underground levels and nine surface parking spaces.

The Harbor Hotel, including the basement, covers 44,754 square feet at Seventh Street and Lincoln Avenue, which is considered one of the most important intersections in the city.

Tonight's agenda item is separate from developer GCP-Steamboat's application for a demolition permit to raze the building.

The Historic Preservation Commission on Aug. 31 placed a 90-day waiting period on demolishing the hotel because of the building's historical, architectural and geographic importance.

Before the 90-day period ends, the City Council could set an ordinance preventing the building from being demolished until a final development plan were approved, according to city legal staff.

The building proposes an element that only exists in one other building in Steamboat: it would straddle an alleyway. The only other similar alleyway element connects the Routt County Courthouse and its annex, City Planner Jonathan Spence said.

The city's departments of planning services, public works and fire prevention are opposed to the alleyway element, according to a city staff memo. Staff members are asking planning commissioners not to support the alleyway aspect of the building.

-- To reach Dana Strongin, call 871-4229 or e-mail dstrongin@steamboatpilot.com.

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