How about ‘COTO Flats?’ Newest workforce housing project for Summit County, Breckenridge has a name |

How about ‘COTO Flats?’ Newest workforce housing project for Summit County, Breckenridge has a name

The two new apartment buildings at “COTO Flats” are shown here on Sunday. The building at 15 McGee Lane is shown in front of an identical building at 51 McGee Lane.
Eli Pace /

After working on Huron Landing via an intergovernmental partnership last summer, Breckenridge and Summit County are at it again, this time pooling resources on a workforce housing project dubbed “COTO Flats.”

Breckenridge is almost finished erecting two identical, three-story apartment buildings on a lot carved out of the Block 11 property, where the town has been looking to bolster its workforce-housing inventory. Each new building will house nine single-bedroom apartments once complete.

“This is the first step to implementing the latest collaboration with Summit County on workforce housing,” senior planner Laurie Best told Breckenridge Town Council as she introduced a proposed ordinance on Oct. 9 that sets up the two governments to work together again.

The ordinance, which Breckenridge passed again last week on second reading, authorizes the town manager and clerk to execute a special warrantee deed to convey one-half interest in the property over to the county. For its part, the county will pay the town $2.1 million in three equal installments.

While authorizing the town manager and clerk to sign the deal, council also got to review a proposed intergovernmental agreement dictating how the two will manage the side-by-side apartment buildings at 15 and 51 McGee Lane.

“When all is said and done, the county will control one of the apartment buildings and the town will control the other apartment building that’s on this lot,” Best said as she summed up a key component of the agreement.

The apartments are slated to be ready in mid-November under the expectation that leases will be offered to town and county employees. Once built, the town and county will own the 47,394-square-foot parcel and identical apartment buildings as tenants in common.

Per the agreement, each will have to cover the maintenance, operational and insurance expenses of their individual buildings while sharing in costs related to snow removal, trash collection and landscaping. The town will control the green apartment building at 51 McGee Lane while the county would operate the blue one down the street.

Because they would jointly own the property with the county, Breckenridge town manager Rick Holman told town council this particular parcel and development should have a name.

“One idea that’s been tossed around — and the county is on board — is to call it ‘COTO Flats,’” Holman said as he explained the suggestion was derived from combining the first two letters of the words “county” and “town.”

Councilman Jeffrey Bergeron said he thought it “cute,” as did the mayor and a handful of other council members who quickly chirped back “COTO” to endorse the handle.

In July 2017, Breckenridge and Summit County officials celebrated the construction of 26 two-bedroom apartments at Huron Landing, an $8.5 million workforce housing project on Country Road 450, off Highway 9, near the 7-Eleven in Breckenridge.

Huron Landing was the result of a 50/50 partnership between the county and the town, believed to be the first agreement of its kind in Summit County. At the time, Nicole Bleriot, director of Summit County housing, praised the project and predicted that Huron Landing would be the first of many town-county partnerships on workforce housing to come.

“We’re such a small community of multiple towns and the county, it’s absolutely essential that we all collaborate and work together,” she told the newspaper as she described the county and towns as “mightier” together.

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