Subsidy request dropped for Willits hotel |

Subsidy request dropped for Willits hotel

Scott Condon
The Aspen Times

The developer of Willits Town Center has dropped a request for $1 million in subsidies from the Basalt town government to build a hotel.

Mariner Real Estate Management will still ask the Basalt Town Council to tweak its land-use approvals so it can switch the location of the hotel within the project, according to local representative Tim Belinski. Mariner officials will outline their plan tonight in a meeting with the council. Specific information will be provided on the size, type and brand of the hotel, Belinski said.

“An extended-stay, limited-service hotel will complement Willits and attract visitors and tourists year-round,” documents submitted to the town said. “Hotels provide new customers and dollars to Basalt.”

Mariner initially submitted a request asking the town to waive an estimated $250,000 in land-use fees for the hotel and supply $75,000 annually for 10 years to subsidize its operations. Belinski said a construction-pricing plan was worked out that eliminated the need for the subsidies.

A hotel is “likely” to be the next building at Willits to be constructed, according to Mariner’s application. “An operator has been selected, initial design and construction pricing work is underway,” the documents said.

“Assuming the hotel (approval) changes are approved and progress on the other components fall in line, construction can begin as soon as spring 2014.”

The hotel initially was proposed along Willits Lane near the roundabout intersection with Valley Road. Now it is being proposed in the southeast corner of the project, near Highway 82. Mariner needs the town to transfer special conditions, such as a fourth floor, from the old site to the new site. Concessions will be sought on setbacks and parking.

Mariner also will outline requests regarding the timing of affordable-housing construction.

The meeting with the Basalt Planning and Zoning Commission and the Town Council will start at 6:05 p.m. in Town Hall. The council is scheduled to vote on a pre-development agreement.


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