Heavy equipment began work this week to extend Owl Hoot Trail toward Walton Creek Road where there are tentative plans to build a senior living campus just east of Casey’s Pond.

Photo by Tom Ross

Heavy equipment began work this week to extend Owl Hoot Trail toward Walton Creek Road where there are tentative plans to build a senior living campus just east of Casey’s Pond.

Site prep begins at Casey’s Pond in Steamboat

Senior living campus planned east of town

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Site of proposed senior campus at Casey's Pond

— An executive with Pearl Senior Living confirmed Friday that site preparation work has begun on 5.5 acres of land immediately east of Casey’s Pond on Steamboat’s south side where a new senior living campus is planned.

Heavy equipment was at work Friday building a road extension that will link Owl Hoot Trail in Wildhorse Meadows to Walton Creek Road.

“The road really helps define the parcel where the senior residences will be sitting,” Pearl Senior Living principal Charles Gee said. “The plan right now is to put in electrical and the water and sewer loop so we’d be in position to jump on it in spring (2011) and build through one winter, not two.”

Before vertical construction could begin next year, the developers would have to obtain the necessary city permits, a process that is expected to begin in mid- to late September. Financing for the project is yet to be secured.

“We continue to pursue financing and remain highly confident the project is finance-able,” Gee said.

Pearl, whose principals have a lengthy track record of completing senior living campuses along Colorado’s Front Range, is partnering with Yampa Valley Medical Center under the umbrella of a separate development entity to build the project. It would contain a variety of living options for elderly people and include a new memory loss center along with a new home for the geriatric care provided at Doak Walker Care Center on the YVMC campus.

The hospital has created a nonprofit group, Colorado Senior Residences, with a community board to work with Pearl on the project.

The road project is being co-funded by the development group Casey’s Pond LLC, including local men Ken Gold and Jon Peddie. They sold the 5.5-acre site for the senior campus and hope to develop an undetermined mix of condos, cottages or apartments on another undeveloped parcel across Owl Hoot Trail from the senior campus. The vision is that they could provide independent housing for relatives or friends of senior campus residents.

Gee said this week his group hopes to present a site plan and preliminary building elevations to the City Planning Department by about the third week of September in hopes of beginning a public hearing process in late October. At that time, he said, more detailed building elevations would be unveiled.

“We’re pretty excited to show our plans to the city,” Gee said. “I think they present a nice anchor as you come into Steamboat. We could not have asked for a better site.”

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