Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Elkhorn Springs gets another go ahead

Sun Valley P&Z approves second development phase

Express Staff Writer

The overhaul of the former site of the Elkhorn Hotel moved forward Tuesday, Aug. 23, when the Sun Valley Planning & Zoning Commission endorsed the second phase of redevelopment.

The P&Z voted to approve Elkhorn Springs Phase 2, which calls for additional residential development on the 11-acre site in the center of Elkhorn Village.

"I think this project is exactly what the city of Sun Valley needs. It needs density in the commercial core (of Elkhorn)," P&Z Chairman Nils Ribi said.

Developer CG-Elkhorn, a Connecticut- and Chicago-based investment group, which includes Ketchum-based partner David Hennessy, proposed the mixed-use residential and commercial development.

Construction is under way on the first phase, which calls for two multi-story condominium structures, three duplexes, a restaurant, a country store, a golf clubhouse, and a sales and information office. The clubhouse opened for business July 6.

The second phase of development calls for two multi-story residential structures and three "paired" homes.

The commission expressed little concern over the two multi-story residential buildings, which are situated to the northwest of Village Way with the interiors facing the Elkhorn Springs village. The two five-story buildings provide a total of 40 condominium units, resting above one underground parking structure.

"I think this particular site design is appropriate for this particular location in the city. It is a unique location," Commissioner Joan Lamb said.

Both buildings essentially maintain the same configuration as approved in the development's master plan in August 2004.

Plans for development of the multi-story residential buildings include construction of an amphitheater located to the west of the two buildings.

Commissioner Phil Usher made a motion to approve the multi-story structure application, finding that the developer adequately addressed a list of concerns and providing that the development falls under the city's Workforce Housing Ordinance for new development. The number of work-force housing units will be determined at a later time by city staff.

The plan for the multi-story structures was approved unanimously. Commissioner Ken Herich did not attend the meeting.

The commission also moved forward to unanimously approve the three townhouse buildings containing a total of six units. The buildings will be situated adjacent to the southern roundabout on Elkhorn Road.

The commission also recommended the City Council approve a preliminary large block plat for the parcel. The plat creates block development parcels for various buildings in the development and provides for 14 work-force housing units.

Hennessy expects to begin Phase 2 construction at Elkhorn Springs this fall.

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