Breckenridge passes new amenity club regulations on first reading |

Breckenridge passes new amenity club regulations on first reading

Breckenridge Town Council has looked to regulate amenity clubs for the past year, and the council voted on an ordinance at its July 27 meeting.
Photo by Liz Copan / Studio Copan

The Breckenridge Town Council unanimously passed an ordinance regulating amenity clubs at resort properties on first reading at its meeting Tuesday, July 27.

The ordinance would modify the town code to include a definition for recreation and leisure amenity clubs and restrict non-overnight guest use should it pass on second reading at the Aug. 15 Town Council meeting.

The town has described amenity clubs as fee-based day use of amenity areas intended for overnight guests at resort properties, and the Town Council picked up the topic over a year ago following the East Peak 8 development proposal. The town cited parking, traffic and employee housing issues as concerns associated with amenity clubs. In general, an amenity club provides fee-based access to amenities like personal lockers, boot dryers, ski storage racks, game rooms, concierge ski services and parking.

The discussion seemed to reach a conclusion in March, but in April, the council voted to table the ordinance after hearing feedback from Breckenridge Grand Vacations on how it would negatively impact its business model.

Should the ordinance pass second reading, the number of guests allowed at a recreation and leisure amenity club, or an amenity club, will be restricted. The number of non-overnight guests would be limited to the number of vacant divisible units. For example, should an amenity club have 10 vacant rooms that each hold four people on a certain day, 40 day guests would be permitted.

Under the proposed ordinance, amenity spaces that are larger than a certain threshold count as commercial space — similar to retail stores — rather than residential space.

The proposed ordinance makes one distinction between a condominium that includes timeshare units and a hotel, lodge, inn or condominium that does not include timeshares: The latter requires a fee or club membership by the user of the amenities. Only hotels, lodges, inns and condominiums are permitted to have amenity clubs.

A recreation center would be defined as a commercial recreation facility that is not located within a residential use property. A recreation center would not be classified as an amenity club or a common indoor space in a condominium.

Additionally, the ordinance says no additional parking for recreation and leisure amenity clubs will be provided beyond a development’s required residential or commercial parking.

Town attorney Tim Berry pointed out to council in the meeting that if this ordinance passes on second reading, it won’t go into effect until around Sept. 15, after the moratorium on new amenity clubs expires. The current moratorium restricting submission of development permits for new amenity clubs expires Aug. 26.

“I am concerned that we don’t want to create a gap between the expiration of the moratorium and this ordinance going into effect,” Berry said.

Berry suggested two potential solutions to bridge the gap: Council can either ask for this to become an emergency ordinance to speed up the timeline on second reading, or it can vote on a separate emergency ordinance that extends the moratorium until the code changes are implemented.

Council and Berry both preferred the latter option, and Berry said he will present an emergency ordinance to extend the moratorium at the next council meeting.

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