Basalt trailer-park buyer to unveil hotel plan
October 8, 2012
BASALT – A Texas-based development firm with ties to the Roaring Fork Valley has a contract to buy the Pan and Fork Mobile Home Park in Basalt.
Realty Capital Management aims to enlist a partner to build a 120-room Hyatt Place hotel as well as about 15,000 square feet of mixed-use commercial and residential development, according to Richard Myers, managing partner of the company.
Myers is scheduled to unveil details of his company’s plan to the Basalt Town Council Tuesday at the board’s regular meeting. The review is just beginning for the Pan and Fork redevelopment plan.
The nonprofit Roaring Fork Community Development Corp. purchased the Pan and Fork last year and immediately sold a portion of it to the town government for development of a park. The site is sandwiched between Two Rivers Road and the Roaring Fork River. A portion of the property cannot be developed because of flood potential. The town government bought that piece with the vision of developing the park. Roaring Fork Community Development kept the 2.3 acres with the highest development potential.
Michael McVoy, president of Roaring Fork Community Development, has consistently said the organization’s goal has been to sell most of the property but retain a portion for development of a nonprofit campus. He said Monday that Roaring Fork Community Development wants to sell Myers’ firm about 2 of the 2.3 acres it owns.
Myers said he has lived in the Aspen area for a couple of years and had visited the Roaring Fork Valley for about a decade prior to moving. He fell in love with the downtowns of Basalt and Carbondale while exploring the valley. He believes there is big potential for economic development of Basalt’s downtown even with the slow recovery from the recession.
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“You have to be somewhat of an optimist about the country and the Roaring Fork Valley, and I am an optimist,” he said.
He said he believes the Pan and Fork redevelopment would draw people to Basalt’s downtown and help the town become more of a destination. His firm has enlisted the Presidio Hotel Group, of Northern California, to be a potential partner in the development. Presidio would be the main partner in the hotel and a minor partner in the mixed-use development. Realty Capital would be a minor partner in the hotel and the major partner in the mixed-use development.
Realty Capital Management and a sister organization, Realty Capital Partners, are involved in developments around the country.
“We’ve had investments really coast-to-coast,” Myers said.
His partners in Realty Capital Management are Tim Coltart and Jimmy Archie, of Dallas.
Myers is also a minor partner in the company that owns Four Dogs Fine Wines and Spirits, a business endeavor headed by his wife, Susan Myers. That liquor store relocated last weekend next to Whole Foods Market in Basalt.
Myers said the envisioned development at the Pan and Fork site has several positive qualities in its favor. The hotel would have an unparalleled relationship with the Roaring Fork River, and that would be enhanced by the town’s plans for a riverside park. He believes the property would be big for wedding receptions, parties, public gatherings and the like.
“The combination of things is really compelling,” he said.
If all goes as planned, the hotel will be developed, and Presidio or some other firm will manage it under a franchise license with Hyatt. That would require the hotel to be designed and built to Hyatt’s specifications and standards.
The upscale hotel would be on the west end of the property, closest to where Taqueria el Nopal restaurant is located.
Realty Capital Management will focus on development of about 15,000 square feet of ground-floor space on the east side of the property, at the intersection of Two Rivers Road and Midland Avenue.
“That’s sort of Main on Main, as they say,” Myers said of the prime location.
The development would include “two or three restaurants” and “three or four” retail shops, Myers said. Upper floors would include 25,000 to 30,000 square feet of residential units, which would number about 20.
The foot traffic generated by the 120 hotel rooms plus the residences would benefit all of downtown, not just the shops and restaurants planned at the Pan and Fork, Myers said.
Roaring Fork Community Development will retain property between the hotel and the mixed-use space for the nonprofit office and potentially conference space, McVoy said. Colorado Mountain College has signed a nonbinding letter of interest for the space and could potentially be an anchor, McVoy said.
Myers said Presidio Hotel Group and his firm are equally committed to the project.
“They and we are spending lots of dollars on plans and the approval process,” he said.
The purchase of the property by Realty Capital Management is contingent on the project being approved by the Basalt Town Council as well as federal agency approvals for the riverside park, Myers and McVoy said.
Another vital piece of the plan is finding replacement housing for 38 individuals and families that currently live in the Pan and Fork Mobile Home Park. Basalt has a replacement-housing ordinance on the books that requires replacement of all housing displaced by development. McVoy said Roaring Fork Community Development and the town government continue to look for sites for the replacement housing.
Myers and McVoy are scheduled to make their presentation to the Town Council at 7:40 p.m. Tuesday at Town Hall.