Developer exploring new retail in Silverthorne
SILVERTHORNE – An idea floated by a Front Range developer could bring four to five national retailers to Silverthorne if he can pass through a series of hurdles, including gaining permission to relocate Buffalo Mountain Road near the Wildernest subdivision.Peter Cudlip, a principal of Front Range-based Alberta Development Partners, brought his initial thoughts to the Silverthorne Town Council last week for a 100,000-square-foot development between Wildernest Road and Buffalo Mountain Road near Adams Ave.The Silverthorne Lifestyle Center would be constructed on about 11 acres of privately owned land, known as the Bass Auto Park, and could bring in $1 million of sales tax revenue per year, according to a letter from Cudlip’s architect, Gary Ellerman, to community development director Mark Leidal.Because the hill above the potential site is unstable, Ellerman and Cudlip originally considered constructing large retaining walls directly below Buffalo Mountain Road to allow utilization of the entire site, but instead suggested to the council moving the road off the landslide path.”It’s a very complicated issue. We’ve been working six to nine months trying to figure out how to solve the problem,” Ellerman said.The new road would cut across county open space on the hillside and join back up with Wildernest Road, which developers would widen to support additional traffic.The town had its eye on Buffalo Mountain Road for many years because the instabilities have caused the need for constant repairs, and a permanent fix has been on the radar screen, Leidal said.”I think it’s a grand idea to improve Buffalo Mountain Drive. That’s a win-win situation for anybody who lives up there,” said Council Member Peggy Long.But there could be a glitch.Silverthorne, the county and several organizations purchased the approximately 25 acres of open space in February, with the stipulation that the town could build a road through it if there was a catastrophic landslide that wiped out the existing road, said county open space and trails director Todd Robertson.Robertson said his office received a letter last month from the town asking if it could have more discretion over use of the open space to allow for road construction before a natural disaster occurred.The county has not formally responded to the town because it’s concerned the town’s request could jeopardize a pending Great Outdoors Colorado grant that would help pay for the land acquisition, Robertson said. Further, the Open Space Advisory Council has “very strong concerns” about the prospect of building a road through open space, he added.Robertson said the decision to allow Silverthorne a broader use of the open space will be up to the Summit Board of County Commissioners. If Cudlip opts to move forward with the project, the first formal step with the town would be to submit a site plan to the community development department, though it may never get to that point, Leidal said.”We could find engineering reasons, or whole lot of different reasons why this doesn’t work,” Leidal said.Initial feedback from the council on the potential project was mostly positive.”I look forward to having something like that done and making sure there is a grocery store at the base of that hill,” said Mayor Lou DelPiccolo, reiterating his desire for the town to attract a grocer to add a more stable sales tax generator to the town’s retail mix. Cudlip is also developing Phase II of the Silverthorne Town Center, which will consist of a mix of residential and retail on the property adjacent to the Silverthorne Pavilion.Nicole Formosa can be reached at (970) 668-3998 ext. 13625, or at email@example.com
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