River Edge project up for Garfield County review | AspenTimes.com

River Edge project up for Garfield County review

John Colson
Post Independent
Aspen, CO Colorado

GLENWOOD SPRINGS – The Garfield County commissioners are expected to decide Monday whether to approve the controversial River Edge development, located about halfway between here and Carbondale along Colorado Highway 82.

The developers, Carbondale Investments LLC, hope to build 366 homes, along with 30,000 square feet of commercial space, on 160 acres of an original 281-acre site. The plan includes 55 “affordable homes.”

The remainder of the property, roughly 121 acres, has recently been subdivided into two parcels of approximately 80 acres and 41 acres, according to county documents.

That property is owned by Garfield County Commercial Investments LLC, according to county planner Kathy Eastley.

Eastley said there currently is no development application for that property.

The site has been subject to several development proposals over the past decade, starting in 2001 with a planned unit development known as Sanders Ranch.

That plan called for 62 single-family homes and 168 multifamily units as well as a golf course.

The property was sold before development could occur, however, and over the intervening years, development plans have included the Bair Chase project, Cattle Creek Colorado and River Bend.

River Bend, proposed by the Related WestPac development group, could have included more than 1,000 homes, 30,000 square feet of commercial space and a school site if Related WestPac had not gone bankrupt.

The various development plans have generated considerable opposition from the neighboring towns of Carbondale and Glenwood Springs, mostly concerning whether it is appropriate to build a veritable new – if unincorporated – community between two established municipalities.

The River Edge development, if approved, would take place in 11 phases and would be completed by 2031, according to the project application.

In line with the phased development plan, the applicant is seeking a 20-year vested-rights period, which is longer than any vested-rights approval granted by the Board of County Commissioners, according to a memo from county attorney Andrew Gorgey.

Gorgey’s research showed that the longest period of vested rights approved so far by the county was 15 years, for the Spring Valley Ranch PUD, according to the memo.

Complete information on the River Edge proposal is available on the home page of the Garfield County website at http://www.garfield-county.com.

The public hearing on the River Edge development application is scheduled for the afternoon portion of the commissioners meeting, which begins at 1 p.m. in the commissioners meeting room of the Administration Building at 108 Eighth St. in Glenwood Springs.