Roaring Fork Club unveils expansion plan |

Roaring Fork Club unveils expansion plan

Scott Condon
The Aspen Times
Aspen, CO Colorado

BASALT ” Nearly 18 months after the Roaring Fork Club withdrew an application to expand its residential golf community in Basalt, the partners are seeking approval for a scaled-down application.

The private club submitted an application for eight luxury cabins similar to what exists on the property, three single-family homes, eight affordable-housing units, a new administration building, a spa and gym for members and a children’s camp.

The Basalt Planning and Zoning Commission had its first hearing on the proposal Tuesday night. None of the board members raised any issues of concern. A formal vote is expected March 18.

The site eyed for development is within the town limits and the urban growth boundary ” an area the town has determined is appropriate for development.

The club’s previous development proposal sparked a lengthy land-use battle, in large part because that plan required going outside the town’s urban growth boundary. That proposal included 32 luxury cabins, 18 single-family homes, 36 affordable-housing units and the kids’ camp.

“That got all caught up in the change of politics,” club partner Jim Light said at Tuesday night’s hearing.

The application was withdrawn in November 2006 after the council majority indicated they would vote against it because it was out of compliance with the town’s master plan.

Light and his partners in the expansion proposal, Jim Chaffin and David Wilhelm, believe this plan avoids the controversy of the last plan. The developers want to “start with a clean slate,” said Patrick Wilhelm, the project manager.

The expansion is proposed on 14 acres owned by the Arbaney and Kittle families. The club will lease the land, with an option to buy. The families keep the three homesites, if they are approved. The homes can be up to 5,000 square feet each, under the town code. The cabins could be 3,500 square feet each. The new administration building would be 8,000 square feet while the fitness center would be 9,000 square feet.

The club wants to keep half of the eight affordable-housing units for itself. The other four could go into the town’s affordable-housing pool. Wilhelm said the partners are willing to consider adding affordable housing, if town officials propose an idea. However, the eight units already proposed exceed the requirements.

Wilhelm said the expansion would add to the Roaring Fork Club’s contributions to Basalt’s economy. “Over 100 jobs have been created from the development of the club,” he said.

The existing club includes an 18-hole championship golf course and 48 luxury cabins and suites.

The addition could produce an additional $100,000 annually in tax revenues to the school district and $20,000 annually to the town, Wilhelm said.

Planning commission member and former Basalt Mayor Rick Stevens said he saw “nothing controversial” with the application and felt the board should act quickly to advance it.

After the planning commission vote March 18, the project will be reviewed by the Basalt Town Council.


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