Lake Village talks continue
Hayden officials face lawsuit by construction company
November 14, 2008
Steamboat Springs — Hayden town officials and lawyers are scheduled to see a judge next week to try to talk through issues related to the Lake Village subdivision.
The town has called the letter of credit and the bond on the stalled neighborhood off Routt County Road 53 in southern Hayden. Liens and bankruptcy issues have stopped work at the subdivision, which consists of a handful of unoccupied model homes.
Hayden secured the letter of credit, which was worth $502,000 and was issued by Vectra Bank, Town Manager Russ Martin said. The bonds, worth more than $1.3 million, are another story.
Oregon-based Robinson Construction is responsible for the bond, issued by Safeco Insurance. The company sued the town and Safeco to keep Hayden from taking the money, Martin said.
Robinson, which is not affiliated with RN Robinson & Son of Hayden, handled some of the work on the project. The company then filed liens against the developer, Mountain Adventure Property Investments, saying it did not receive payment. Partners in the project have denied that claim.
Infrastructure problems ar-ose, and other work remains undone, Martin said.
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“We went after the bond to say, ‘If you, Robinson, are not going to complete it, we need this bond to do the work,'” he said. “They said, ‘Don’t take our bond; let’s figure this out.’ So that’s what we’re trying to do.”
Robinson project executive Kirk Moisan said he was confident the company could resolve its issues with the town.
“We have to obviously protect our interests in the deal, but our intent is always to be on favorable terms with the town of Hayden and try to help them get this project finished under the circumstances,” Moisan said.
The parties and their lawyers are slated to appear before a federal magistrate judge Nov. 21 in Denver, Martin said. Hayden is determining what must be done to prepare Lake Village for construction next spring, he said.
“I think it’s important that people know we are moving toward a conclusion,” Martin said.
He added that he was sympathetic to Robinson’s position.
“Once a company goes to bonding, it hurts their ability to bond in the future,” Martin said. “I understand why they did it, but we still need to get this done.”
“Hopefully by Thanksgiving we’ll have some resolution to this,” Martin said.
Moisan also expressed optimism.
“We’ll get it all worked out, and it’ll be a nice subdivision, and eventually it’s all going to be fine,” he said.
Robinson has struggled with the partners of Mountain Adventure Property Investments.
Grassy Creek Holding; 4-S Development; Oregon-based Robinson and Sons; and Oasis Development, an Oklahoma subsidiary of FSB Bancorp., make up the group. Grassy Creek and 4-S are local companies.
Mountain Adventure and 4-S have filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, and the partners have been negotiating with Robinson Construction for months to resolve the issues. Developer Ron Sills of 4-S said that discussion was ongoing.
Nothing has changed at Lake Village, he said, which is the first filing of a larger project called the Villages at Hayden.
“We’re just keeping the property from deteriorating right now,” Sills said. “We’re just making sure the houses are safe, but we’re not doing any construction.”
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