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Minturn resort developer in no hurry, thanks to the economy

Chris Outcalt
Vail correspondent
Aspen, CO Colorado
Vail Daily fileThe Ginn Company has three years to submit a final plan for its private ski and golf resort in Minturn, Colo., southwest of Vail.
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MINTURN, Colo. ” The Ginn Company is in no hurry to submit a final plan for its private golf and ski resort on Battle Mountain in Minturn, offi­cials say.

Bill Weber, senior vice president for the company, said the economy has affected the timetable for the project.

“I think just in general with today’s turn of events there isn’t any urgency,” Weber said. “Do we go real fast and have something and perhaps not have buyers out there or do we do it in a more prudent manner and when we’re done, it all comes together?”

In May, residents voted overwhelmingly in favor of annexing developer Bobby Ginn’s land into the town, a major step in Ginn’s plan to build his resort. The town, located just southwest of Vail, approved a preliminary plan for the project in August. Part of the annexation agreement states the company has three years to submit a final plan to the town.

Weber said the company has never con­sidered not returning with a final plan, but didn’t rule out taking three years to com­plete it.

“This could happen sooner or later, I hon­estly don’t know,” Weber said. “I think per­haps as we get later into the year after the elections it will probably dictate whether or not we go faster or slower ” we have plenty of time.”

But despite difficult economic times, Weber said the company has continued to work with the town on a weekly basis.

“If I was living in the town and we were not talking, maybe I would have a concern,” Weber said. “We have very good communi­cation with the town staff and consultants.”

Interim Town Manager Gary Suiter said the town is in a holding pattern until the company submits a final plan.

“We’re all sort of just hanging around,” Suiter said. “From what I see everything is still going on at a pretty good clip.”

Once the town receives the final plan it will schedule a series of public hearings on separate parts of the application, including housing, traffic and the environment.

“And then the insanity starts again,” Suit­er said.

If the Town Council determines there are significant changes between the final and preliminary plans, the resort could be sent back to the planning commission, Suiter said.

Weber said the company is still working with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to determine whether building could take place in the Bolts Lake area.

” That one is near the top of the list,” he said.

Weber said despite the difficult economy, the company isn’t waiting on a particular Dow Jones number to trigger submission of the final plan.

“We want to do what’s right for the proj­ect and right for the town of Minturn,” Weber said. “We have always represented that we wanted to be a good neighbor, but now we want to be a good partner with the town.”

coutcalt@vaildaily.com


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