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Developer to add 54 private garages near Hayden Airport this summer

Auto Hangars hopes to appeal to second homeowners in Steamboat

Auto Hangars plans to open later this summer with 54 rentable garages near the Yampa Valley Regional Airport in Hayden and has plans to build as many as 285 in the near future.
Cayman Carter/Courtesy

A developer with a background in storage is looking to open a facility that will eventually feature nearly 300 one-car garages near Yampa Valley Regional Airport. More than 50 of the garages are expected to be complete as soon as August.

Cayman Carter, who’s family owns a home in Steamboat, said the development called Auto Hangars between the airport and Hayden could appeal to second home-owners in Steamboat Springs.

“They want to fly in, and they want their car waiting for them at the airport,” said Carter, who currently lives in Southern California. “They want to drive their own car to their house rather than have their caretaker bring out their car or have to take a shuttle.”



The development has secured appropriate permits, and construction is underway. Carter said he plans to have 54 garages ready later this summer. When fully built out, there will be 285 garages available. He said he already has about a dozen people looking to sign leases.

Schematics for the project show it will eventually have seven buildings with insulated, but not heated, garages. It will also include a small lobby area with a bathroom.



Carter said there will be staff onsite when the facility opens that will shuttle cars to the terminal a quarter-mile away if requested. Each unit will have a car battery tender, ensuring the vehicle doesn’t die while waiting for its owner to retrieve it.

“My family comes from the storage business,” Carter said. “I learned about this from a guy doing it in Bozeman, (Montana) for people that fly into Bozeman airport and drive to Big Sky.”

A rendering of what Auto Hangars plans near the Yampa Valley Regional Airport show there will eventually be seven buildings.
Cayman Carter/Courtesy

There is already a similar garage facility near the airport that will butt up to Carter’s development. He said the appeal of his garages are they can be rented, which means the person using it isn’t paying the property taxes on it. Carter said some nearby garages have been listed with a sales prices as high as $95,000, whereas his garages will cost a little over $5,000 a year.

Carter said he closed on the property early last summer and hopes to have the first phase of construction completed by the end of July.

Hayden Town Manager Mathew Mendisco said the development is appropriate as it is right next to another storage facility and considered a light industrial use — the town’s desired land use near the airport.

Auto Hangers sits across Routt County Road 51A, where Hayden is working on building a regional industrial park.

“We were pretty happy to see it happen out there by the airport,” Mendisco said. “Those are exactly the types of developments we want to see. A low carbon footprint type of development that provides decent commercially assessed value.”

When completed, Auto Hangars will be accessed off Piper Lane, a road that will eventually be paved to accommodate the airport’s planned car wash and rental car refueling facility.

Airport Director Kevin Booth said there hasn’t needed to be much coordination with the airport, as the parcel is not on airport property. Still, Booth said Carter worked with him to choose a roof material that wouldn’t cast a glare into the eye of pilots trying to land.

Booth said there isn’t a schedule for the carwash and refueling projects yet, as each is still going through the bidding process. He didn’t think Carter’s project would have any conflicts with his own.

On the east end of the airport, Booth is working on a separate development opportunity, which is in the process of collecting proposals. It would likely feature private airplane hangers that Booth hopes could eventually entice businesses like an airplane mechanic to Hayden.

“We’re kind of in a wait-and-see mode,” Booth said, noting the deadline to respond to his request for proposals hasn’t yet passed. “I know of at least two developers that showed interest, so I’d be surprised if we didn’t have some folks interested.”


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