East Vail Housing Support - a message from Triumph Development

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Hello Vail Valley Partnership Members.  This note is to inform everyone of the Town of Vail review process for our proposed Booth Heights neighborhood in East Vail and generate support for the development.  Please view our Fact Sheet which includes a summary of the project and the proposed site plan.

The Planning and Environmental Commission will be reviewing our Development Application over the next two PEC meetings.  The first PEC meeting is on Monday 6/24 at 1pm and will focus on the architectural and civil plans.  The second meeting will be Monday 7/8 and will focus on technical reports such as wildlife mitigation and the environmental impact report.  The agendas have not been published yet, but can be found at the attached link when they are available – https://www.vailgov.com/government/town-council/council-agendas-meeting-materials/online-agendas.

A few highlights of the proposed plan are as follows:

  • The 23-acre property was originally zoned for market-rate duplexes.  It was down-zoned in 2017 to 18 acres of Natural Area Preservation to protect open space and wildlife and 5 acres of Housing to create a new neighborhood for locals.
  • The 5-acre Housing parcel is the only undeveloped Housing property zoned for locals’ housing in the Town of Vail.
  • The neighborhood will include 73 new homes for a variety or residents – 42 apartments for front-line workers and 31 townhomes that will resemble Chamonix.
  • The Development Application is asking for no zoning variances.
  • With 61 new Employee Housing Units, Booth Heights will create the most net-new EHU’s in Town in more than decade.
  • No financial subsidy is requested from the Town.  12 market-rate townhomes will provide the financial subsidy needed to undertake the project.
  • As a comparison the Vail Indeed program has closed on 9 deed restrictions in 2019 at an average cost of $91K.
  • The Development Application includes the most substantial protections for wildlife ever proposed on private property in a Development Application and will create new quality winter-range at a ratio of 3:1 when compared to the development footprint.

Understanding and protecting wildlife has been fundamental in preparing our plan.  We are committed to the comprehensive Wildlife Mitigation Plan that is detailed in our Development Application.  If we thought that development of this site was going to lead to the demise of the East Vail bighorn herd, we would not be pursuing this development.  The good news – and fact of the matter – is that the herd very rarely uses our 5-acre development parcel.  Their documented CPW winter range is 1800 acres, and they do frequent the area above VMS and neighborhoods to our west.  At times they even come down to graze along the Frontage Road and all the way over to the TOV Public Works facility.  This is a strong indication that they are habituated to activity in the Valley.  We have seen no evidence to support the opposition’s claims that development will cause the demise of the herd as some neighbors allege.

Good development is about balancing many factors and finding middle ground.  This development is not about a black-and-white choice between wildlife or housing.  We can – and should – provide for both.  Triumph will make significant enhancements on its private private property to protect wildlife, and will continue to be a good partner in coordinating with TOV, CPW and the USFS on enhancement that they may want to pursue on public lands.   But we need this housing, and this private property is zoned to allow this housing.

Your in-person support for this new neighborhood is very powerful and can go a long way in letting the PEC and Town Council understand how critical the housing shortage is in our Valley.  If you can’t be there in person, an email to TOV with your thoughts is a good second alternative.  Emails can be sent to the PEC at commdev@vailgov.com with a copy to the Town Council at towncouncil@vailgov.com
Thank you for your consideration and support.  Feel free to call me at the phone number or email below if you want to discuss any of this further.

Best regards,

Michael O’Connor
Triumph Development
w: 970.688.5057
12 Vail Road – Suite 700 – Vail, CO – 81657