Letter: Developing the Brown Ranch property is not the right decision for Steamboat | SteamboatToday.com

Letter: Developing the Brown Ranch property is not the right decision for Steamboat

Steamboat has a massive affordable housing issue, but unfortunately, following the Brown Ranch presentation, I’ve come to the conclusion that it is not the solution. Here are my reasons why:

  1. Once completed, Brown Ranch will encompass nearly 40% of the Steamboat residents. However, Brown Ranch will depend on the remaining 60% for funding for police, firefighters, maintenance, and snow removal.
  2. With an estimated infrastructure cost of $400 million, new water treatment plant and construction subsidies, Steamboat will be subsidizing the Brown Ranch residents. These are today’s dollars. How much will this increase by the time of construction?
  3. To support increased traffic, U.S. 40 will likely need to be increased to four lanes with Steamboat residents paying a significant portion.
  4. Not just geographically but also culturally, Brown Ranch will be a city on its own and not truly a part of Steamboat. It will be a massively subsidized Colorado rendition of Disney’s “Perfect Town” that will banish low-income residents to their own compound instead of integrating affordable housing into our community.

If you compare Brown Ranch to Alpenglow, the Reserves and Sunlight Crossing, you will find these properties are a tiny fraction of the cost per affordable housing resident. The bottom line is there are more efficient and cost effective solutions to our housing crisis. And culturally, it is not the right solution either.

Christopher French

Steamboat Springs

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