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For the week of Oct. 20, 1999 through Oct. 26, 1999

Fields attracts local, young professionals

Lottery drawing successful

Express Staff Writer

Following more than a year of bumpy roads, the Fields at Warm Springs "affordable" units have been committed to local residents.

A lottery was held on Tuesday of last week during the evening at Ketchum City Hall to determine which qualified applicants would have the opportunity to purchase the condominiums at the below-market price of $135,000.

There were 17 qualified applicants as determined by the Blaine County Housing Authority’s predetermined housing guidelines. There are 14 affordable units.

According to Blaine County housing director Steve Amsbaugh, the remaining three applicants will serve as backups, in case one of the lottery winners backs out.

The 14 finalists and three alternate buyers include local school teachers, medical professionals and public safety workers living and working in Blaine County, according to Garth Schlemlein of Seattle-based Sawtooth Development. Several were born and raised in Blaine County. Most have lived or worked here for over five years.

"It’s so good to see the smiles on these people’s faces," Ketchum Mayor Guy Coles said. "I almost lost my office over this, but those happy people—that makes it all worth it."

Coles referred to the notorious, but unsuccessful, Ketchum City Council recall effort late last summer and fall.

"This is a particularly historic night here in Ketchum," Blaine County Housing Authority member Steve Pruitt said last Tuesday night. "This has been a special project so far and we hope it will become more a part of the tradition of this area so we can all work and live in the same community."

The Fields homes are part of a public-private partnership to provide housing to local residents. Sawtooth Development, a private development company, worked in cooperation with the Blaine County Housing Authority and the city of Ketchum to offer the homes at special pricing to full-time residents.

"We saw an opportunity to meet the needs of local residents," Schlemlein said. "These are beautiful two-bedroom condominiums filled with features such as in-floor radiant heat, wood cabinets and fireplaces. On the open market, they would sell for up to $235,000. Many people working in Ketchum simply can’t afford to purchase a home here. This opportunity has made 14 homes available to families and individuals."

The Fields at Warm Springs is a community of 41 condominium homes with views of Bald Mountain. It is located across Warm Springs Road from the Warm Springs Golf Course. Amenities at The Fields include classic Sun Valley architecture, an outdoor spa, a community building and work-out facilities, Schlemlein said.

The grounds will be landscaped in a style to fit in with the local surroundings, he added. Prices for the three-bedroom homes range from $279,000 to $323,000.

"Construction is well underway and we expect to have our model home available by early December," said ReMax of Sun Valley’s Heidi Baldwin, the sales agent for the property. "Ten of the market-rate homes are already sold. The remaining 17 will go quickly."

Schlemlein added, "We are looking forward to completing the community this winter. We are also excited about having these great members of the community as our new neighbors."


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Copyright 1999 Express Publishing Inc. All Rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part in any form or medium without express written permission of Express Publishing Inc. is prohibited.