At Tuesday nights meeting, Cornerstone Holdings President, Clark Lipscomb, presented an invoice, dated January 31, 2019, in the amount of $2,172,304.48, to the trustees for the Leland Creek Underpass project. Lipscomb explained the invoice was for the amount owed by the town including interest. “I wanted you to be aware of it”, Lipscomb told council. Council directed Lipscomb to give the invoice to town clerk, Dani Jardee.

Winter Park funds affordable housing purchase in Hideaway Junction

Council next unanimously approved Ordinance 519, authorizing a transfer of funds in the amount of $282,430 to the Winter Park Affordable Housing Corporation for the purchase of Lot 8, Hideaway Junction, also known as 112 Trestle Drive. “We will have a buyer immediately thereafter”, said Housing Coordinator, John Crone. The town currently has over 200 people on its affordable housing waitlist.

Adolf’s on the Fraser minor subdivision approved

Council next reviewed Resolution 1674, the Public Hearing continuance for minor subdivision, Adolf’s on the Fraser. Community Development Director, James Shockey told council it is a “request from property owner, Janice Waldron, to subdivide the property” located along the centerline of Timberline Drive in Old Town. Shockey explained that, since it is only two parcels, it can be approved as a minor subdivision.

With approval, Waldron will convey Outlot A (right of way) to the town. The property will also include 1.317 acres of open space (21.97% of total area), and .302 acres will be dedicated to the town to satisfy the 5% open space land dedication requirements.

It was noted that Mountain Parks Electric and Winter Park Water & Sanitation had expressed concerns with easements and Waldron agreed to work with them to resolve the issues. Council approved Resolution 1674, with conditions outlined by the Planning Commission.

Winter Park moves closer to adopting disposable bag fee

Town Manager, Keith Riesberg presented Ordinance 520, amending Title 3 of the town’s code by the addition of Chapter 8, establishing a disposable bag fee. In December, Council had directed Riesberg to craft the document which adds a $.20 per disposable bag fee which would apply to retail and grocery stores, excluding temporary vendors and businesses with secondary and incidental sales, such as salons and spas and restaurants. The proposed fee would take effect on July 1, 2019.

The bag fee would be similar to the town of Fraser’s, which takes effect on April 1, 2019, with a few differences. Most notably, purchases made via state assistance programs, such as WIC or SNAP, would not be subject to charges for the disposable bags.

Businesses would be required to post signage notifying customers of the bag fee. They will also retain 40% of the amount collected to be used for education, developing and displaying signage, staff training, administration and accounting. The town will work with the Chamber on a reusable bag branding campaign to educate the community.

“The draft has been discussed with council to align with the Healthy and Thriving Environment chapter as outlined in the Imagine Winter Park Town Master Plan”, said Riesberg.

David Sedbrook, Government Affairs Coordinator from the Colorado Restaurant Association, told council he had come up from Denver because the Ordinance “came up on our radar due to some of the language”. The current version makes exceptions to restaurants and he asked council “Is there any way to get the definition added to the ordinance?”. Colorado Health Code states that reusable bags can cause contamination and foodborne illness. When it occurs, “there is no way to prove where it came from. That’s the issue”, said Sedbrook. “One issue goes to court and they (the restaurant) can go out of business.”

Council clarified that the bag fee would not apply to restaurants, since it is used for a secondary purpose.

Councilman Myers stated, “We discussed putting a one year expiration/trial period. It makes everybody feel good, but it may not work as intended. Is this approved annually?”. Riesberg told him it would not, per the draft. Councilman Ferrari offered, “We could always revisit this”. Councilman Myers said “I would like to revisit after one year to see if people buy into it”.

Councilman Banks observed, “Our idea is to get rid of plastic bags – we can get there by banning plastic bags. Now, we pass this, someone is going to pay 20 cents each and walk out with the bags anyway. Visitors will walk out with 8-10 bags and we still have the issue”, adding, “Imposing a bag fee will change behavior. But we’ll still have the bags and we are penalizing our visitors”.

Mayor Pro-tem Kutrumbos said, “This is a good first step. Getting rid of all single use plastic bags is a a major undertaking”.

Councilman Ferrari stated, “I like this – it creates a level playing field here in the valley. This way, guests won’t have to know which side of the boundary they’re on”.

Mayor Lahrman told council, “We will work with the Chamber to get out in front of it to get reusable bags in rental properties”. The plan is to advise visitors of the bag fee and to educate them that fees apply and to use the bags provided in the unit when they do their shopping. “This is a good first step. We can re-evaluate to see what we can do incrementally (on banning single-use plastic bags, straws, etc.). Some towns have banned the plastic bags altogether.” Mayor Lahrman added, “It will be good to get feedback from Fraser, the grocery store, the resort to see what’s working well and what’s not. We’re dipping our toes in the water to get started.”

Riesberg told council they have the ability to come back at any time to review the document, “it’s a policy decision”. He agreed to speak with legal to see what can be done to write in a review date or sunset. Council directed Riesberg to change the definition of retail store to outline as Fraser had done and create some type of review process in the draft, as allowable. Council approved the Ordinance to move on to a second reading and public hearing at the next meeting on February 19th.

Roam Filing No. 1 Preliminary Plat approved with conditions

Resolution 1676 was next presented to the council for review and consideration of approval. Town Planner, Mara Owen, described the process which started in October 2018 and had been continued while a traffic roundabout study had been completed. Planning Commission had approved the Preliminary Plat, with a list of 35 conditions, at the January 22 meeting.

The first filing includes Planning areas 1-4, 6 and 7, which are primarily single-family, multi-family and mixed use development, covering 120 lots located in the northwest section of the 172 acre property.

Jeff Vogel with Vogel and Associates spoke on behalf of Fraser River Development Company and walked the council members through a presentation of the first filing. The filing includes initial infrastructure and connectivity projects such as extending Ski Idlewild Road to “Road A” of the development. “We are not proposing extending Vasquez Road at this time”, said Vogel, adding, “filing 1 doesn’t warrant this connection right now”.

As for the roundabout on US 40, “Road B” will need to be constructed with input from CDOT and town staff. It could take 1-2 years to develop. “We are continuing to evaluate the lodge and are not committed to taking it down. Mr. Fanch is a big fan of adapt and reuse and it’s still up in the air”, said Vogel. Roads A&B would be public roads when 25% of the development’s C.O.’s are granted.

Filing No. 1 also includes Fraser River Trail improvements (working with the town), a pedestrian bridge across the Fraser River and the first 1.5 acre “pocket park” with a pavilion, restrooms, parking and a play field.

The residential units within the filing are a mix of single family, detached homes on small lots, townhomes that will front Ski Idlewild Road and custom home sites on 70’ x 120’ lots that run along the east side of Road A. The mixed use structures will have retail space on the lower level with multi-family units above, similar to the Hideaway Station development further north in town.

When asked about market projections and how long it would take to build, Vogel replied, “We are biting this off in small pieces. We are doing this in phases, being somewhat conservative in order to bring on diversity of product type, but we have to build out infrastructure. Last time the market dropped, the more diverse, the better off we were. It helps”.

Mayor Lahrman observed, “It seems aggressive to go from Rendezvous Way to the old Beavers Lodge”. Vogel told him, “We are being pretty disciplined. We want to provide the vitality, not just a custom home market”.

One of the conditions (#35) the Planning Commission had requested was that a plat note be added indicating the development will work with the town to maintain vehicular access on Wanderer’s Way. Roam preferred to instead maintain pedestrian access, since the property surrounding the right of way does not belong to the development.

Councilman Myers stated, “That’s not reasonable. We’ve been talking about pedestrian walkability for 30 years – we don’t need another vehicle access”.

The Planning Commission also requested (Condition #15) the developers obtain a permanent maintenance easement from an adjacent landowner or realign the road to provide adequate space for plowing in winter. Vogel told council they had continuing conversations with the landowners, but believed the construction would not impact the parcel of land in question. “We’ve got to keep advancing, being mindful of the big picture”, said Vogel.

Council talked through the list of conditions, approving the removal of Conditions 30 and 35. On Condition 15, they urged the developer to (at least) get a construction easement, if not, the condition will be dropped. Lastly, staff will wordsmith Conditions 10, 18, and 23-29. Resolution 1676 was approved unanimously.

After the discussion, Mayor Lahrman added, “This plan is exciting – it pushes the needle forward and we are excited for this to move ahead”.

Riesberg added, “The plats and amount of information filed from October to the approval point tonight reflects a lot of work on the developer, staff and agencies involved. This is a significant improvement that will start to shape our town”.

In other town news…

Town Manager welcomed new Finance and Human Resources Director, Lizbeth Lemley, who started with the town on January 28. Lemley’s responsibilities will include creating the Town budget, overseeing all finance activities, and managing employee relations.

New Lift Operations Center
The Town is working with Grand County staff on a special use permit for a new transit facility, possibly located near the County Road and Bridge Shop on Grand County Road 5. The potential schedule is to begin design in 2019, construction in 2020 and completion in early 2021. This project is very preliminary with many moving parts so the schedule is tentative at this time.

Sustainability Assessment
The Town is participating in a Capstone Project with the University of Colorado Masters of Urban Regional Planning program. Andrew Williams selected the Town of Winter Park to create a Sustainability Plan as a part of his Capstone Project. The final assessment will help the town focus efforts to create a more sustainable community and organization.

Fraser Winter Park Police Department on the move
Later this month, the Fraser Winter Park Police Department will be moving their headquarters…across the hall. The department will still be in Winter Park Station, but you will soon find them in Suite 6A and 6B instead.

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