Boundary criteria changes OK’d | SteamboatToday.com

Boundary criteria changes OK’d

Dana Strongin

With little discussion, the Routt County Planning Com–mission approved changes to the criteria for inclusion in the Urban Growth Boundary on Thursday night.

The Urban Growth Boundary outlines land that city and county officials think will be someday annexed into Steamboat Springs because of the land’s potential for urban development.

Officials decided to review the criteria for inclusion in the boundary in September. At that time, six applicants who wanted their land to be part of the boundary were denied. The applications were denied because the criteria were too limiting, officials said.

The criteria were that the land must be: compatible with the Steamboat Springs Community Area Plan; able to provide a positive fiscal impact on the community; suitable for development; different from other parts of the Urban Growth Boundary; and a logical addition to the boundary.

None of the six applicants met the requirement for positive fiscal impact, officials said in September. That was the main change that county planning commissioners agreed to Thursday. They said that the criterion should be that the inclusion of the land must provide public benefit, such as open space or extra affordable housing, in place of a fiscal benefit.

Planning commissioners also wanted to change the requirement that the land must have different proposed uses than the rest of the boundary. Instead, they agreed that the proposed use of the land simply should be compatible with the surrounding uses.

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The changes passed unanimously, with minor word edits and little discussion.