Knob Hill Inn plan gets quick critique,
Ketchum P&Z delays
design review until November
By GREGORY FOLEY
Express Staff Writer
Ketchum Planning and Zoning commissioners
this week delayed taking action on a proposed addition to the Knob Hill Inn,
leaving the inn’s owner irked over what he perceives to be slow progress in the
review of his application.
"I don’t know what the problem is," said
hotel owner Joe Koenig, noting that his application does not request any waivers
or variances to the city zoning code. "In all due respect, I don’t think the
city is doing their homework."
In addressing the P&Z Monday, Oct. 27,
Koenig stressed he would like to have the city conduct a full review of the
project as soon as possible. "What’s the hang-up?" he asked.
At issue is a proposal by Koenig to build
an addition to the Knob Hill Inn—the hotel and restaurant business located at
960 Main St.—that would expand the floor area of the operation by approximately
25,000 square feet.
Commissioners first reviewed the
application last month, before asking Koenig and project architect Richard Meyer
to return on Oct. 27 with a more detailed set of plans for the proposed
addition. After additional application materials were submitted to the city last
Thursday, Ketchum Planning Director Harold Moniz determined that he had
insufficient time to review the material and prepare a detailed staff report for
P&Z commissioners on Monday agreed to look
at revisions to the project plans, but quickly made it clear they would not
render a decision until a later date.
The proposed addition to the Knob Hill Inn
includes plans to demolish an existing garage and swimming pool immediately
south of the hotel to make room for six new fractional-ownership condominiums
and a new swimming pool and spa facility. The proposed addition is designed to
match the existing 26-room hotel, which has approximately 32,000 square feet of
The proposed structure would at its
highest point reach a height of 35 feet, the maximum allowed on the
Brian Barsotti, the Ketchum developer who
on Sept. 2 gained city approval of the proposed 80-room Bald Mountain Lodge,
reiterated statements made last month that contend the proposed
fractional-ownership units might not comply with the city’s Tourist-district
zoning regulations. "Under the ordinance, I don’t think he can build this,"
The zoning regulations specifically state
"timeshare" units are allowed in the district, but make no mention of
Koenig told commissioners that that he
would be willing to call the new units at the hotel "timeshare" units—rather
than "fractional-ownership" units—to comply with the ordinance.
Ultimately, P&Z commissioners agreed to
conduct a full design-review hearing for the project on Monday, Nov.10.
City Attorney Margaret Simms said she
would issue a determination on whether the project complies with city zoning
regulations, prior to the Nov. 10 meeting.