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Colorado Mountain Express, a subsidiary of Vail Resorts, announced Tuesday that it has received approval on a conditional use permit to convert a portion of a commercial property that the company owns in Silverthorne, Colo. to workforce housing.
The approximately $440,000 project is the latest in Vail Resorts’ $30 million commitment to creating workforce housing opportunities in the communities in which the company operates, including the Wintergreen development in Keystone and the recently announced plans to rezone a parcel of land in East Vail for workforce housing and open space, pending approvals.
The approximately 5,900-square-foot building is situated north of Interstate 70 off the Blue River Parkway in Silverthorne and was initially zoned as a commercial property with residential units on the second floor approved under prior conditional use permit.
Up to eight Colorado Mountain Express employees have been housed here in recent years, just a mile north of the ground transportation provider’s Summit County operations.
The building has received approval on a conditional use permit to accommodate two new four-bedroom units for Colorado Mountain Express workforce housing or up to 10 additional employees, freeing up additional housing elsewhere in Summit County.
The development will cater to alternative transportation and will include bike parking as well as an employee shuttle to provide workforce transit to Colorado Mountain Express’ nearby operations center. The building will maintain a small commercial space in the new first floor configuration.
“We’re pleased to have been able to work with the Town of Silverthorne to create an innovative workforce housing option for what’s otherwise been an underutilized space,” said John Dawsey, vice president and general manager of Colorado Mountain Express. “The transformation of the space makes sense for our operations in Summit County, for our employees and in relieving some of the pressure on workforce housing elsewhere in the community.”
Vail Resorts is completing design plans and intends to submit a building permit application in September.
In 2015, Vail Resorts made a $30 million commitment to its mountain resort communities in the form of contributing dollars, land and/or long-term master lease agreements to spur private-public partnerships for new workforce housing.
The Wintergreen project represents a commitment of approximately $6 million by the company to the long-term lease of units. Currently, the company owns or leases about 3,000 beds across Eagle and Summit counties.
The East Vail workforce housing project, if approved, will provide approximately six acres dedicated to deed-restricted workforce housing, while the remaining 17-acre parcel would be maintained in its natural state.
Vail Resorts continues to actively engage in many discussions to bring more affordable housing options to its resort communities in Colorado as well as in Park City, Whistler-Blackcomb and Lake Tahoe.