A proposed condominium and townhome project off Hilltop Parkway could be too close to Fox Creek, Steamboat Springs planning commissioners said Thursday during a pre-application hearing.
The development, which would be called Fox Creek, would be on the north side of Hilltop Parkway behind the Sinclair Gas Station repair garage. The proposal includes 25 residential units in three buildings and a separate building for detached garages.
On Thursday, planning commissioners were asked to review a series of discussion items about the proposal. Discussion items included the buildings' setback from Fox Creek, the wetlands on the site, snow storage plans and vegetation.
Most of the five commissioners who were at the meeting shared similar concerns about the setback and the wetlands.
Commissioner Dick Curtis said he was pleased that the developer preserved the land's steep hillside and did not try to build on it. But the reduced lot size, he said, creates problems with setback from the creek. He said he would be somewhat in favor of moving the creek.
Commissioner Scott Myller said he was having trouble seeing ways to adjust the buildings or the creek.
"This lot is so constrained that I can't really imagine what you could do with it," he said. He said the city will continue to see more tight setbacks as development on the mountain continues.
When it comes to wetlands, he said, "there's almost nothing left to the site if we totally follow every rule."
Commissioners also expressed concerns about snow storage plans, the project's architecture and density.
"It feels really cramped," Commissioner Dana Stopher said. "It just feels like it might be too much."
Curtis told the applicant he would like to see more affordable housing than what is required by the city's new inclusionary zoning ordinance. The ordinance requires developers of residential projects to include a certain percentage of affordable units within each project. Curtis also said he hoped to see environmentally friendly building techniques.
Curtis was hopeful that the project would be a success.
"I think you have a good start, and I think this is going to be a good project," he said.
The Planning Commission also:
Tabled until April 13 a review of the development plan and final development plan for the Montenero at Steamboat Springs project. The project, between Mount Werner Road and Rockies Way, would include seven duplexes and a triplex for a total of 17 new residential units.
Voted 5-0 to approve the final development plan for an addition to the Fifth Street Marketplace on Lincoln Avenue. Planning commissioners agreed to recommend that the City Council approve a different parking concept for the project.
Voted 4-1 to approve a development plan for Comfy Pals Doggie Day Care business at 3110 Elk River Road. Planning Commission chairwoman Kathi Meyer was the dissenting vote. She said she was concerned about the noise the dogs would make. Commissioner Dana Stopher suggested that the business owners use plants or shrubbery along the fence line to block noise.