Summit County Government

Posted on: March 1, 2016

U.S. Forest Service Delivers Patent for Lake Hill

Summit County names Corum Real Estate to lead master planning process for future workforce housing site near Frisco

Contacts:
Gary Martinez, County Manager
970-453-3401, gary.martinez@summitcountyco.gov
Don Reimer, Summit County Senior Planner
970-668-4203, don.reimer@summitcountyco.gov

SUMMIT COUNTY – The U.S. Forest Service and Summit County held a patent-transfer ceremony Tuesday, dedicating the 44.8-acre Lake Hill property to future workforce housing development. White River National Forest Supervisor Scott Fitzwilliams delivered the ceremonial patent to the Board of County Commissioners during a gathering at an overlook just above the property, immediately northeast of Frisco.

“This day has been a long time coming,” Summit County Commissioner Dan Gibbs said. “The Lake Hill patent is the result of a great deal of hard work, vision, passion and creative problem-solving by a great many people from a variety of different roles and organizations.”

The U.S. Forest Service transferred the patent to Summit County for a price of $1.75 million, specifically for workforce housing development. The sale of the land required Congressional approval, which the Forest Service received through the Lake Hill Administrative Site Affordable Housing Act, signed by President Barack Obama in July 2014. Congressman Jared Polis and then-Senator Mark Udall introduced the legislation in their respective chambers in 2013.

“As we face growing housing needs across my district, today serves as a prime example of finding creative solutions to a local problem by working with both community and federal stakeholders,” Polis said. “This property is a model of how to work with one another and proves that we can indeed solve problems in Congress. I was proud to author this legislation in the House, and I’m pleased that our local workforce and businesses will benefit from this important milestone today.”

The legislation also received strong support from Sen. Michael Bennet.

“Today’s announcement is a great step forward for Summit County as it works to build more housing for its residents and workers, who drive the local economy,” Bennet said. “It was a pleasure to work with the rest of the Colorado delegation to pass this bill to make this project a reality.”

The U.S. Forest Service had identified the Lake Hill property for disposal and/or administrative use, given the loss of its forest character many years ago following the construction of I-70, and the more recent devastation by the mountain pine beetle. Per the Congressional act, the sale of the land will provide funding for the capital improvement and maintenance of Forest Service facilities in USFS Region 2.

The site is well suited for workforce housing because of its central location in the county and its proximity to public transit and other services. Preliminary estimates by Summit County indicate that the parcel could accommodate between 250 and 350 housing units, with the final number to be determined through the development planning process.

At Tuesday’s event, Summit County announced the selection of Corum Real Estate Group to lead a multi-disciplined team in the development of a master plan for the Lake Hill property. The team includes Gorman & Company, Norris Design, Shopworks Architecture, Studio PBA and Tetra Tech.

“The Corum team has the breadth and depth of expertise that we need to develop a master plan that will best serve the future workforce of Summit County,” Commissioner Karn Stiegelmeier said. “They come to the table with impressive skills and experience in project financing, community planning, architecture, design and construction, all in the workforce housing arena.”

Several award-winning master-planned communities have been completed by the team members, including Mariposa and Midtown, both located in Denver.

“Summit County has the unique opportunity to create a visionary, inclusive neighborhood that will provide much needed workforce housing,” Corum Real Estate Vice President Eric Komppa said. “We are thrilled at the opportunity to work with the community to create this vision through the master plan process.”

Together, Corum and Gorman have extensive experience developing and managing workforce housing throughout the mountain resort region, including Pinewood Village in Breckenridge and Lion’s Ridge in Vail. Norris Design, a Denver-based planning and landscape architecture firm with a local office in Frisco, will lead the neighborhood master planning effort. Site design and site-specific architecture will be developed collaboratively by two architectural firms: Studio PBA, known for its recent design of Pinewood Village 2 in Breckenridge, and Shopworks Architecture, known for Burlingame Ranch in Aspen.

Civil engineering and infrastructure planning will be performed by Tetra Tech, a local firm that has worked on numerous workforce housing developments, including Wellington Neighborhood and Valley Brook Townhomes in Breckenridge and Peak One Neighborhood in Frisco.

The team will begin reaching out to community members and stakeholders this spring to gather input, with a community open house slated for April. Summit County is aiming to complete the master plan by September.

“The workforce housing shortage is among the most significant challenges facing our community,” Commissioner Thomas Davidson said. “The Lake Hill project will not solve it entirely, and it will not happen overnight, but this project does represent a significant investment in our local economy, our sense of community and our quality of life.”

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