‘We’ve been discovered:’ Housing projects continue to pop up in Silverthorne

Smith Ranch in Silverthorne is pictured May 14, 2020. Upon completion, the neighborhood will include a total of 214 deed-restricted, for-sale units.
Photo by Liz Copan / Studio Copan

New housing units have been popping up all around Silverthorne for a few years now, and even more are on the drawing board.

Lina Lesmes, Silverthorne planning manager, said there are a lot of housing projects in the works right now, but that it has been this way for about three years as Silverthorne is growing in popularity.

“It’s just really exciting to see all the interest in Silverthorne and the town really transform,” Lesmes said. “I would love it if we could see more workforce housing development.”

Lesmes said the market is delivering more and more market-rate housing developments, while the town is spearheading workforce housing projects. The town was able to start the Smith Ranch workforce housing development thanks to voter-approved funding.

Looking at the far north end of town, the Summit Sky Ranch community is just over halfway complete, with plans set for 240 market-rate, single-family residences. Right now, there are about 180 units, and Lesmes estimated it could be finished by summer 2023.

Heading south down Colorado Highway 9 toward town, Lesmes said the Eagles Nest subdivision on the west side of the road is mostly built out but still has some lots available. She said it’s a similar situation across the street at the Angler Mountain Ranch subdivision, which is also mostly built out.

She added that on the corner of Highway 9 and Bald Eagle Road, there is a proposal for 18 market-rate townhomes to fill the vacant lot there, which has gone through preliminary council approval. The proposed development, known as Fish Hawk Landing, will go to council for final approval this week. The development would be able to break ground as soon as it receives a final thumbs up.

Up the hill in the same part of town, the Angler Mountain Vistas property is proposed to add 17 market-rate, single-family homes and has preliminary approval. It already went through a subdivision planning process, so infrastructure is being put into place; Lesmes said the property will likely go vertical in the fall should it receive final approval.

Next is the Smith Ranch Neighborhood, which will include a total of 214 deed-restricted, for-sale units once finished, including townhomes, duplexes and single-family homes. With 187 units already in existence, Lesmes said the neighborhood is more than two-thirds of the way through construction.

Adjacent to the neighborhood is the site for what the town hopes will become Smith Ranch Commercial, which could include a small grocery store with other commercial options and up to 141 workforce rental apartments or townhomes.

Lesmes also said owners of a small property on a corner of Adams Avenue and Ruby Ranch Road are considering adding more housing on that land, though there are no development proposals yet. She said it is owned by the same developers as Summit Sky Ranch.

On the east side of Highway 9 between Ninth and 10th streets are the River West condos, which are still under construction but sold out. These condos are just south of another new condo development, Blue River Flats, which are completed and sold out, as well.

Lesmes said the developers of these two projects are looking into building more condos, one of which would be called Apres Shores and the other Blue River Flats Phase 2. Apres Shores has already gone through preliminary approval and could break ground on the 60 condos this fall.

The owners of Backcountry Dental also plan to add workforce housing units for their employees as part of their new office development right next to the Retreat on the Blue condos. This is close to the Wave on the Blue property, at 700 Blue River Parkway, which received preliminary approval from council at its July 14 meeting.

The town is also looking at a small parcel it owns off Annie Road as an option for workforce housing units, though there isn’t a ton of room on the property. Lesmes said Silverthorne Town Council was supportive of the idea.

There are also plans for housing units to go up next to Town Hall on Sixth Street and Center Circle. This development, known as Summit Blue, will include 19 townhomes and 16 single-family residences. It received final approval from council in March.

Lesmes also said a developer has expressed interest in adding more market-rate housing to the demolished former site of the Green Village of the outlets. She said it could also include a restaurant or small commercial component, though nothing is concrete.

Lastly, Fourth Street Crossing and the proposed Fourth North development would add a mix of townhomes and workforce housing units. Fourth North is proposed to include up to 130 workforce bedrooms, and Fourth Street Crossing will include 33 townhomes.

Town Manager Ryan Hyland said while he thinks Silverthorne has always been a popular place, that interest has only grown in recent years.

“Certainly, we’ve been discovered, so to speak, in recent years, and there are a lot of people that have an interest in being here full time or vacationing, and so we continue to be a growing community,” Hyland said.

He added that the town is invested in making sure Silverthorne has the “community feel that you get” when those who work in the community live in the community.

“The more units that we have that are deed restricted, whether that’s ownership or rental, the better,” Hyland said. “It’s the way you preserve community.”

Town Council is also set to have a discussion around the town’s workforce housing projects at its July 28 work session, reflecting on the Workforce Housing Action Initiative meeting Wednesday, July 21.

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