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Big Steamboat Springs downtown development to enter city planning process soon

Scott Franz
A rendering from a presentation about RiverView shows a potential concept for a public plaza at Fifth and Yampa streets.
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— A long-dormant development site on the banks of the Yampa River in downtown Steamboat Springs could soon start coming back to life.

Mark Scully, of Green Courte Partners, said development plans for the 4.5-acre RiverView site are likely to be submitted to the city in the next two weeks.

“In a perfect world, we receive approvals in January or February, and then we’re in a position to move forward with a General Improvement District (to fund public improvements) and the project itself in the spring or summer,” Scully said Monday. “That’s the hope.”

The plan envisions a mix of office, retail and residential uses on the 4.5-acre site.

At a City Council meeting last week, Scully suggested the plans will also include a hotel.

Scully and a group of architects and lawyers representing the owners of the property told the City Council last week that they’d like to establish a General Improvement District so that public infrastructure, such as roads, sidewalks and a public plaza, could be constructed sooner.

The plan also calls for improved river and fishing access on the Yampa.

Local attorney Bob Weiss said a General Improvement District, or GID, would not cost the city or its taxpayers.

Under the system, the city would issue bonds, and the developer or affiliate would purchase those bonds. The city then reimburses the developer for the construction of the improvements from the bond proceeds.

The GID also allows the city to collect bond repayments from assessed properties and deliver interest payments to bond holders.

The City Council said last week it would need to see the proposal for RiverView before deciding whether to approve the formation of a GID.

“The bigger effort here is a subdivision plan, which creates a community of four parcels that can be subdivided into different projects,” Scully said. “The whole goal there is to accelerate through the development of the project.”

Council President Walter Magill said it was nice to hear talk of something happening with the land, which lies between Third and Fifth streets on the south end of Yampa Street.

To reach Scott Franz, call 970-871-4210, email scottfranz@SteamboatToday.com or follow him on Twitter @ScottFranz10


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