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City, county prioritize items

Christine Metz

The Steamboat Springs City Council and Routt County commissioners began the task Monday of wading through the top priorities for the Steamboat Springs Area Community Plan.

Each board has ranked which action items from the community plan update should be addressed first. Monday’s meeting was the first time the two boards discussed which items they should tackle together.

The boards did not get through the entire list Monday and directed staff to come up with a matrix showing what items received high prioritization from both boards. The discussion will continue at a Jan. 11 meeting.

The boards did identify protecting existing mobile-home parks, coordinating land use and transportation decisions and establishing maximum size limits for residential structures as areas of joint concern.

“The key to looking at this is that there are some activities the city can do, the city can work on, some are of Routt County interest, some overlap,” City Planning Director Steve Stamey said.

Issues that look at the expansion of the city’s urban growth boundary, the work of the Growth Management Advisory Group and area land annexation were joint city and county concerns, Stamey said. The items that the city and county agreed to work on could be added to the boards’ intergovernmental agreement, he said.

Since the plan’s adoption in May, both boards and the city and county planning commissions have been working at prioritizing action items from the update of the area plan.

More than 200 action items came out of the adopted version of the area plan, and 84 of them were designated as No. 1 priorities. Sixty-eight items were identified as No. 2 priorities, and 11 were given No. 3 status. Forty-six were identified as ongoing projects.

County Commissioner Nancy Stahoviak said protecting existing mobile-home parks should be a top priority and suggested it be among the list of items to discuss with the Yampa Valley Housing Authority.

When the council reviewed its priorities in September, it listed evaluating regulations that affect infill and redevelopment, developing a database of key housing indicators and re-evaluating affordable housing incentives — all items that affect affordable housing — as items it wanted to address within a year. City staff said those items could be handed over and worked on by the housing authority, which then could make recommendations to the council.

At Monday’s meeting, members of the two boards said there was a need to meet with the housing authority to review items in the area plan that affected affordable housing.

Board members also identified establishing maximum size limits for residential units as a priority.

County Planning Director Caryn Fox said some counties require homes to go through a more stringent planning process if they exceed 5,000 or 6,000 square feet. The city has restrictions on how much of a building lot a home can cover, but it does not have any size restrictions for homes.

— To reach Christine Metz call 871-4229

or e-mail cmetz@steamboatpilot.com


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