MEMORANDUM

TO: Planning and Environmental Commission

FROM: Community Development Department

DATE: April 25, 2005

SUBJECT: A request for a recommendation to the Vail Town Council on a proposal to establish Special Development District No. 39 (Crossroads), pursuant to Article 12-9(A), Special Development District, Vail Town Code, to allow for the redevelopment of Crossroads, a mixed use development; a request for a text amendment to Section 12-2-2, Definitions, Vail Town Code, pursuant to Section 12-3-7, Amendment, to add a definition for bowling alley; a request for a text amendment to Section 12-7E-4, Conditional Uses, Vail Town Code, pursuant to Section 12-3-7, Amendment, to add bowling alleys as a conditional use; and requests for conditional use permits to allow for the construction of an outdoor operation of the accessory uses as set forth in Section 12-7E-5 (ice skating rink); a major arcade to include indoor entertainment; a theater, meeting rooms, and convention facilities; multiple-family dwellings and lodges; and a private club to allow for the establishment of a for sale parking club, pursuant to Section 12-7E-4, Vail Town Code, located at 141 and 143 Meadow Drive/Lot P, Block 5D, Vail Village Filing 1, and setting forth details in regard thereto.

 

Applicant: Crossroads East One, LLC, represented by Mauriello Planning Group, LLC

Planner: Warren Campbell

 

I. SUMMARY

The applicant, Crossroads East One, LLC, represented by Mauriello Planning Group, LLC, is requesting a recommendation from the Planning and Environmental Commission to the Vail Town Council regarding a development application to establish Special Development District No. 39, Crossroads, pursuant to Article 12-9(A), Special Development District, Vail Town Code, to allow for the redevelopment of Crossroads, a mixed use development; a request for a text amendment to Section 12-2-2, Definitions, Vail Town Code, pursuant to Section 12-3-7, Amendment, to add a definition for bowling alley; a request for a text amendment to Section 12-7E-4, Conditional Uses, Vail Town Code, pursuant to Section 12-3-7, Amendment, to add bowling alleys as a conditional use; and requests for conditional use permits to allow for the construction of an outdoor operation of the accessory uses as set forth in Section 12-7E-5 (ice skating rink); a major arcade to include indoor entertainment; a theater, meeting rooms, and convention facilities; multiple-family dwellings and lodges; and a private club to allow for the establishment of a for sale parking club, pursuant to Section 12-7E-4, Vail Town Code, located at 141 and 143 Meadow Drive/Lot P, Block 5D, Vail Village Filing 1.

 

Upon review of the applicable elements of the Town’s planning documents and adopted criteria for review, the Community Development Department is recommending the Planning and Environmental Commission forwards a recommendation of approval with conditions of the applicant’s request to the Vail Town Council. A complete summary of our review is provided in Section VIII of this memorandum.

II. DESCRIPTION OF THE REQUEST

 

The applicant, Crossroads East One, LLC, represented by Mauriello Planning Group, LLC, is requesting a recommendation from the Town of Vail Planning and Environmental Commission to the Vail Town Council of a development application to establish Special Development District No. 39, Crossroads, to allow for the redevelopment of the Crossroads site.

 

The establishment of Special Development District No. 39, Crossroads, is intended to facilitate the redevelopment of Crossroads, located at 141 and 143 Meadow Drive/Lot P, Block 5D, Vail Village Filing 1. A vicinity map has been attached for reference (Attachment A). The applicant is proposing to remove the existing improvements on the site and construct a new structure and public plaza. According to the Official Town of Vail Zoning Map, the proposed development site is located in the Commercial Service Center (CSC) zone district. As such, development on the site shall be governed by the regulations outlined in Article 7E, Commercial Service Center (CSC) District, Title 12, Zoning Regulations, Vail Town Code.

 

The key elements of the proposal made since the Commission last saw the proposal on December 13, 2004, include:

 

The reduction of the number of dwelling units from 76 to 75 and the incorporation of eight (8) lock-offs. A proposed deviation from the allowable number of dwelling units (47) which is 28 dwelling units greater;

Proposed $1.1 Million in public art;

A reduction in the proposed Gross Residential Floor Area (GRFA) from 219,000 square feet to 210,054 square feet. A proposed deviation from the allowable amount of GRFA (46,051 sq. ft.) which is 164,003 sq. ft. greater;

A reduction in the proposed building height at its peak from 107.5 feet to 99.9 feet with additional reductions in height ranging from 16 to 28 feet. The reduction of one floor plate of the building;

Provision for employee housing units located off-site to accommodate the net increase in employees generated by this redevelopment;

Elimination of setback encroachments along the west property line except for the one-story portion of the building containing the enclosed loading and delivery facility and other architectural changes to the west elevation.

The elimination of all subterranean encroachments into the Village Center Road and East Meadow Drive right-of-ways and the removal of subterranean improvements within a minimum of 10 feet of the west property line to preserve existing trees;

The establishment of the extension of the Town of Vail Streetscape Master Plan by creating a plan and installing streetscape improvements for the intersections of Meadow Drive and Village Center Road and Meadow Drive and Willow Bridge Road and the South Frontage Road;

338 subsurface parking spaces (92 in excess of Town Code);

A 3 screen movie theater with stadium seating accessed at the pedestrian level of the proposed public plaza;

A 10 lane bowling alley and sports bar/night club/family arcade accessed at the pedestrian level of the proposed public plaza ;

An outdoor ice skating rink for public skating in winter/water-recreation feature (pop-jet fountain) in the spring and summer months;

A public plaza of 24,130 square feet at the intersection of Willow Bridge Road and Meadow Drive (Approximately 40,000 sq. ft. including East Meadow Drive and Willow Bridge Road public right-of-ways) for public gatherings and events;

Public restrooms at the pedestrian level and within the lower level of the parking garage;

The incorporation of a covered bus stop on the southwest corner of the building;

61,596 square feet of new retail and restaurant space at the pedestrian level and one floor above surrounding the public plaza;

Potential reduction of skier parking from South Frontage Road on busy days by allowing use of Crossroads parking facility;

Establishment of an enclosed 5 berth loading and delivery facility with access from the South Frontage Road which will be made available for public use;

Reduction in the width of the building located at a zero setback in the southwest corner of the site from 52 feet to 44 feet along East Meadow Drive;

Changes to the architecture and height were made to the northwest and northeast portions of the building;

The addition of a roof feature which wraps around the loading and delivery bay on the northwest corner. The addition of an awning on the west elevation over the pedestrian access proposed to connect the public plaza and Vail Village Inn Phase III; and

A greater detailed design for the two commercial floors of the project. Details of the design will be worked out with the Design Review Board.

 

In conjunction with the requested establishment of a new SDD, the applicant is requesting a text amendment to the zoning regulations and multiple conditional use permits. The specifics of those requests are identified below:

 

A request for a text amendment to Section 12-2-2, Definitions, Vail Town Code, pursuant to Section 12-3-7, Amendment, to add a definition for "bowling alley".

A request for a text amendment to Section 12-7E-4, Conditional Uses, Vail Town Code, pursuant to Section 12-3-7, Amendment, to add bowling alley as a conditional use.

Requests for conditional use permits to allow for the construction of an outdoor operation under the accessory uses as set forth in Section 12-7E-5 (ice skating rink/pop-jet fountain); a major arcade to include indoor entertainment; a theater, meeting rooms, multiple-family dwellings and lodges; and a private club to allow for the establishment of a for sale parking club, pursuant to Section 12-7E-4, Vail Town Code.

 

A reduced copy of the floor plans and elevations have been attached for reference (Attachment B).

 

Pursuant to Section 12-9A-9, Development Standards, Vail Town Code, the applicant is requesting deviations from the prescribed development standards for building height, density (number of units), Gross Residential Floor Area (GRFA), additional bulk and mass in required setbacks, site coverage, and landscape area.

 

 

 

 

III. BACKGROUND

 

This property was annexed into the Town of Vail by Court order on August 26, 1966, as a part of the Original Town of Vail.

The existing Crossroads was developed in the 1970’s as a mixed use development which has changed little since.

The Crossroads property is one of three properties zoned Commercial Service Center. The other two properties are the Gateway Building and the WestStar Bank Building, both of which are Special Development Districts.

On September 7, 2004, the Town Council granted unanimous approval for the applicant to proceed through the development review process. Several members expressed concern over the extent of the encroachments into the right-of-way (all right-of-way encroachments have since been eliminated from the plans, with the exception of landscape/streetscape improvements).

On September 13, 2004, the Planning and Environmental Commission held a public work session with the applicant. At that meeting, the applicant gave a presentation which generally discussed the project goals and objectives. The Commission generally expressed support. However, it was identified that there were some issues to be resolved.

On October 6 and 20, 2004, the Design Review Board held a conceptual review meeting with the applicant. At that meeting, the applicant gave a presentation which generally discussed the project goals and objectives. The Board generally expressed support for the project. However, it was identified that there were issues and concerns to be addressed regarding the materials and architecture.

On October 25, 2004, the Planning and Environmental Commission held a public work session with the applicant. At that meeting the applicant gave a presentation which generally discussed the project goals and objectives. The Commission generally expressed support for the project. However, it was identified by the Planning and Environmental Commission that there were issues to be resolved such as the height of the building along the western property line. Staff identified height in the southwest corner, landscaping, setback encroachments, right-of-way encroachments, mechanical venting, and the retail design as concerns.

On November 8, 2004, the Planning and Environmental Commission reviewed and tabled the proposal. In general, concerns were expressed about the scale of the structure and in particular the heights of the structure along the western property line. Several members expressed satisfaction regarding the mix of uses and the ability of the retail and public space to create an activity center in the heart of Town.

On December 13, 2004, the Planning and Environmental Commission forwarded a recommendation of denial to the Town Council regarding the adoption of SDD No. 39. The Commission cited encroachments into setback, height, and the lack of relationship in terms of bulk and mass of the proposed structure to surrounding buildings.

On January 18, 2005, the Town Council reviewed the application and identified concerns with bulk, mass, encroachments into the Town right-of-way, relationship to neighboring properties, height, and public benefits.

On February 1, 2005, the Town Council remanded the application for SDD No. 39 back to the Planning and Environmental Commission for review of an amended application which addressed the issues identified by the DRB, PEC, and Town Council.

 

IV. ROLES OF REVIEWING BOARDS

 

A. Special Development District

Order of Review: Generally, applications will be reviewed first by the PEC for impacts of use/development, then by the DRB for compliance of proposed buildings and site planning, and final approval by the Town Council.

 

Planning and Environmental Commission:

 

The PEC shall review the proposal for and make a recommendation to the Town Council based upon the findings made on the criteria located in Chapter 12-9A, Special Development District, Vail Town Code.

 

Design Review Board:

 

The DRB has no review authority on a SDD proposal, but must review any accompanying DRB application. The DRB review of an SDD prior to Town Council approval is purely advisory in nature.

 

Staff:

The staff is responsible for ensuring that all submittal requirements are provided and plans conform to the technical requirements of the Zoning Regulations. The staff also advises the applicant as to compliance with the design guidelines.

 

Staff provides a staff memo containing background on the property and provides a staff evaluation of the project with respect to the required criteria and findings, and a recommendation on approval, approval with conditions, or denial. Staff also facilitates the review process.

 

Town Council:

 

The Town Council takes into consideration the PEC’s recommendation when reviewing an application for a special development district and is responsible for final approval/denial of an SDD. The Town Council shall review the proposal and approve/approve with conditions/deny the application based upon the findings made on the criteria located in Chapter 12-9A, Special Development District, Vail Town Code.

 

B. Conditional Use Permit

Order of Review: Generally, applications will be reviewed first by the PEC for acceptability of use and then by the DRB for compliance of proposed buildings and site planning.

Planning and Environmental Commission:

The PEC is responsible for final approval/denial of CUP. The Commission’s decision to approve/approve with conditions/deny a conditional use permit are based upon the criteria found in Chapter 12-16, Conditional Use Permits, Vail Town Code and conformance of the proposal with the zone district in which it is located.

Design Review Board:

The DRB has no review authority on a CUP, but must review any accompanying DRB application.

Town Council:

Actions of DRB or PEC maybe appealed to the Town Council or by the Town Council. Town Council evaluates whether or not the PEC or DRB erred with approvals or denials and can uphold, uphold with modifications, or overturn the board’s decision.

Staff:

The staff is responsible for ensuring that all submittal requirements are provided and plans conform to the technical requirements of the Zoning Regulations. The staff also advises the applicant as to compliance with the design guidelines.

Staff provides a staff memo containing background on the property and provides a staff evaluation of the project with respect to the required criteria and findings, and a recommendation on approval, approval with conditions, or denial. Staff also facilitates the review process.

 

C. Text Amendment

Order of Review: Generally, applications will be reviewed first by the PEC for acceptability of use and then by the DRB for compliance of proposed buildings and site planning.

 

Planning and Environmental Commission:

 

The PEC shall review the proposal for and make a recommendation to the Town Council on the compatibility of the proposed text changes for consistency with the Vail Comprehensive Plans and impact on the general welfare of the community.

 

Design Review Board:

 

The DRB has no review authority on code amendments.

 

Staff:

The staff is responsible for ensuring that all submittal requirements are provided. The staff advises the applicant as to compliance with the Zoning Regulations.

 

Staff provides analyses and recommendations to the PEC and Town Council on any text proposal.

 

Town Council:

 

The Town Council shall review and approve the proposal based on the compatibility of the proposed text changes for consistency with the Vail Comprehensive Plans and impact on the general welfare of the community.

 

V. APPLICABLE PLANNING DOCUMENTS

 

Vail Land Use Plan

 

The Vail Land Use Plan was adopted by the Vail Town Council on November 18, 1986. The plan is intended to serve as a basis from which future decisions may be made regarding land use within the valley. The primary focus of the Vail Land Use Plan is to address the long-term needs and desires of the Town as it matures. The Town of Vail has evolved from a small ski resort founded in 1962 with approximately 190,000 annual skier visits and virtually no permanent residents to a community with 4,500 permanent residents. The Town is faced with the challenge of creatively accommodating the increase in permanent residency as well as the increase in skier visits, while preserving the important qualities that have made Vail successful. This is a considerable challenge, given the fact that land within the Valley is a well-defined finite resource, with much of the land already developed at this juncture. The Vail Land Use Plan was undertaken with the goal of addressing this challenge in mind.

 

A secondary purpose of the Vail Land Use Plan was to analyze a series of properties owned by the Town of Vail, to determine their suitability for various types of community facilities.

 

The goals articulated in the plan reflect the desires of the citizenry. The goal statements that were developed reflect a general consensus of the comments shared at public meetings. The goals contained in the Vail Land Use Plan are to be used as the Town’s adopted policy guidelines in the review process for new development proposals. Staff has reviewed the Vail Land Use Plan and the goal statements that staff believes are applicable appear Section VIII under staff’s review of Criterion D.

 

According to the Official Town of Vail Land Use Plan map, the applicant’s proposed redevelopment site is located with the "Vail Village Master Plan" land use category. Pursuant to the Plan, the "Vail Village Master Plan" land use category description,

 

"Vail Village has been designated separately as a mixed use area and accounts for 77 acres or about 2% of the Plan area. This area has not been analyzed in this Plan document because the Vail Village Master Plan study addressed this area specifically in more detail."

 

Town of Vail Streetscape Master Plan

 

The Town of Vail is in the process of preparing a revision to the adopted Town of Vail Streetscape Master Plan. The original Master Plan is an outgrowth of the Vail Village Urban Design Guide Plan. The Guide Plan was created in 1982 to give guidance to the overall physical development for the Village. In addition to providing broad design guidelines, the Guide Plan suggested specific physical improvements for the Village. Improvements such as new plazas, new landscape area, etc. Along with the construction of these public improvements included proposals to complete numerous private sector improvements. Improvements such as building additions outdoor deck expansions, and façade improvements. The Streetscape Master Plan was written in part to provide clear design direction for coordinated public/private improvements. According to the Master Plan, the purpose of the plan is to provide a comprehensive and coordinated conceptual design for streetscape improvements that:

 

1. is supported by the community;

2. enriches the aesthetic appearance of the Town; and

3. emphasizes the importance of craftsmanship and creative design in order to create an excellent pedestrian experience.

 

 

Vail Village Master Plan

 

The Vail Village Master Plan is based on the premise that the Village can be planned and designed as a whole. It is intended to guide the Town in developing land use laws and policies for coordinating development by the public and private sectors in Vail Village and in implementing community goals for public improvements. It is intended to result in ordinances and policies that will preserve and improve the unified and attractive appearance of Vail Village. Most importantly, this Master Plan shall serve as a guide to the staff, review boards, and Town Council in analyzing future proposals for development in Vail Village and in legislating effective ordinances to deal with such development. Furthermore, the Master Plan provides a clearly stated set of goals and objectives outlining how the Village will grow in the future.

 

The Vail Village Master Plan is intended to be consistent with the Vail Village Urban Design Guide Plan, and along with the Guide Plan, it underscores the importance of the relationship between the built environment and public spaces.

 

Goals for Vail Village are summarized in six major goal statements. While there is a certain amount of overlap between these six goals, each focuses on a particular aspect of the Village and the community as a whole. The goal statements are designed to establish a framework, or direction, for the future growth of the Village. A series of objectives outline specific steps that can be taken toward achieving each stated goal. Policy statements have been developed to guide the Town’s decision-making in achieving each of the stated objectives, whether it be through the review of private sector development proposals or in implementing capital improvement projects.

 

The Vail Village Master Plan’s objectives and policy statements address key issues relative to growth and development. These statements establish much of the context within which future development proposals are evaluated. In implementing the Plan, the objectives and policies are used in conjunction with a number of graphic planning elements that together comprise this Plan. While the objectives and policies establish a general framework, the graphic plans provide more specific direction regarding public improvements or development potential on a particular piece of property.

 

The Vail Village Master Plan is intended to serve as a guide to the staff, review boards and Town Council in analyzing future proposals for development in Vail Village and in legislating effective ordinances to deal with such development. The most significant elements of the Master Plan are the goals, objectives, policies and action steps. They are the working tools of the Master Plan. They establish the broad framework and vision, but also layout the specific policies and action steps that will be used to implement the Plan.

 

As noted on page 35 of the Master Plan,

 

"It is important to note that the likelihood of project approval will be greatest for those proposals that can fully comply with the Vail Village Master Plan."

 

Staff believes this statement re-emphasizes that the Master Plan is a general document providing advisory guidelines to aid the Town in analyzing development proposals and that full compliance is not required in order for a project to be approved.

 

The stated goals of the Vail Village Master Plan which staff believes are applicable to this application appear in Section VIII under staff’s assessment of Criterion D.

 

Specific Sub- Area Details found in the Vail Village Master Plan

Mixed Use Sub Area (#1)

 

The Mixed-Use sub-area is a prominent activity center for Vail Village. It is distinguished from the Village core by the larger scale buildings and by the limited auto traffic along East Meadow Drive. Comprised of five major development projects, this sub-area is characterized by a mixture of residential/lodging and commercial activity.

 

There is a great deal of potential for improvements to both public and private facilities in the area. Among these is the opportunity to develop gateway entries to the Village at the 4-way stop and at the intersection of Vail Road and Meadow Drive. It is also a long term goal to strengthen the connection between this area and the Village core area by reinforcing the established pedestrian linkages. Pedestrianization in this area may benefit from the development of retail infill with associated pedestrian improvements along East Meadow Drive and the development of public access to Gore Creek.

 

A significant increase in the Village’s overnight bed base will occur in this sub-area with the development of the final phase of the Vail Village Inn project. In addition, commercial and residential/lodging development potential is identified in sub-area concepts 3, 4, 6, and 8. The completion of these projects will essentially leave the sub-area "built out".

 

#1-6 Crossroads Infill

Commercial infill over new underground parking lot in conjunction with a large public plaza with greenspace area (existing and new parking demand to be provided on site). While configuration of infill may be done a number of ways, it is the overall intent to replace existing surface parking with pedestrian corridors into a commercial area, as well as to provide a strong building edge on Meadow Drive and streetscape improvements. Improvements of the planted buffer adjacent to the Frontage Road is also important. Relocation of the loading and delivery functions and entry to parking structure is strongly encouraged to reduce traffic on Meadow Drive. Potential to improve fire access also exists in the redevelopment scheme. Special emphasis of 2.4, 2.5, 2.6, 3.1, 4.1, 5.1, 6.1, and 6.2.

 

Goal #2: To foster a strong tourist industry and promote year-around economic health and viability for the Village and for the community as a whole.

 

Objective 2.4: Encourage the development of a variety of new commercial activity where compatible with existing land uses.

 

Policy 2.4.1: Commercial infill development consistent with established horizontal zoning regulations shall be encouraged to provide activity generators, accessible greenspaces, public plazas, and streetscape improvements to the pedestrian network throughout the Village.

Policy 2.4.2: Activity that provides night life and evening entertainment for both the guest and the community shall be encouraged.

 

Objective 2.5: Encourage the continued upgrading, renovation and maintenance of existing lodging and commercial facilities to better serve the needs of our guests.

 

Policy 2.5.1: Recreation amenities, common areas, meeting facilities and other amenities shall be preserved and enhanced as a part of any redevelopment of lodging properties.

 

Policy 2.5.2: The Town will use the maximum flexibility possible in the interpretation of building and fire codes in order to facilitate building renovations without compromising life, health, and safety considerations.

 

Objective 2.6: Encourage the development of affordable housing units through the efforts of the private sector.

 

Policy 2.6.1: Employee housing units may be required as part of any new or redeveloped project requesting density over that allowed by existing zoning.

 

Policy 2.6.2: Employee housing shall be developed with appropriate restrictions so as to insure their availability and affordability to the local work force.

 

Policy 2.6.3: The Town of Vail may facilitate in the development of affordable housing by providing limited assistance.

 

Goal #3: To recognize as a top priority the enhancement of the walking experience throughout the Village.

 

Objective 3.1: Physically improve the existing pedestrian ways by landscaping and other improvements.

 

Policy 3.1.1: Private development projects shall incorporate streetscape improvements (such as paver treatments, landscaping, lighting and seating areas), along adjacent pedestrian ways.

 

Policy 3.1.2: Public art shall be encouraged at appropriate locations throughout Town.

 

Policy 3.1.3: Flowers, trees, water features, and other landscaping shall be encouraged throughout the Town in locations adjacent to, or visible from, public areas.

 

Goal #4: To preserve existing open space areas and expand greenspace opportunities.

 

Objective 4.1: Improve existing open space areas and create new plazas with greenspaces and pocket parks. Recognize the different roles of each type pf open space in forming the overall fabric of the Village.

 

Policy 4.1.1: Active recreation facilities shall be preserved (or relocated to accessible locations elsewhere in the Village) in any development or redevelopment of property in Vail Village.

 

Policy 4.1.2: The development of new public plazas, and improvement to existing plazas (public art, streetscape features, seating areas, etc.), shall be strongly encouraged to reinforce their roles as attractive people places.

 

Policy 4.1.3: With the exception of ski base-related facilities, existing natural open space areas at the base of Vail Mountain and throughout Vail Village shall be preserved as open space.

 

Policy 4.1.4: Open space improvements including the addition of accessible greenspace as described or graphically shown in the Vail Village Master Plan and/or Urban Design Guide Plan, will be required in conjunction with private infill or redevelopment projects.

 

Goal #5: Increase and improve the capacity, efficiency, and aesthetics of the transportation and circulation system throughout the Village.

 

Objective 5.1: Meet parking demands with public and private parking facilities.

 

Policy 5.1.1: For new development that is located outside the Commercial Core I Zone District, on-site parking shall be provided (rather than paying into the parking fund) to meet any additional parking demand as required by the zoning code.

 

Policy 5.1.2: The expansion of the Vail Village parking structure shall maximize the number of additional parking spaces available for public parking.

 

Policy 5.1.3: Seek locations for additional structured public and private parking.

 

Policy 5.1.4: Continue to promote the lease parking program as a means for maximizing the utilization of private parking spaces.

 

Policy 5.1.5: Redevelopment projects shall be strongly encouraged to provide underground or visually concealed parking.

 

Goal #6: To ensure the continued improvement of the vital operational elements of the Village.

 

Objective 6.1: Provide service and delivery facilities for existing and new development.

 

Objective 6.2: Provide for the safe and efficient functions of fire, police and public utilities within the context of an aesthetically pleasing resort setting.

 

Policy 6.2.1: Development projects and other improvements in Vail Village shall be reviewed by respective Town Departments to identify both the impacts of the proposal and potential mitigating measures.

 

Policy 6.2.2: Minor improvements (landscaping, decorative paving, open dining decks, etc.), may be permitted on Town of Vail land or right-of-way (with review and approval by the Town Council and Planning and Environmental Commission when applicable) provided that Town operations such as snow removal, street maintenance and fire department access and operation are able to be maintained at current levels. Special design (i.e. heated pavement), maintenance fees, or other considerations may be required to offset impacts on Town services.

 

#1-7 Village Center Road Improvements

Redesign of intersection as shown on the Vail Village Urban Design Guide Plan. Goal of this project is to create a visual landscape barrier to prevent unnecessary vehicular traffic. Bus, delivery and pedestrian traffic must also be accommodated in this design. Special emphasis on 3.1, 3.2, 5.3, 5.4.

 

Goal #3: To recognize as a top priority the enhancement of the walking experience throughout the Village.

 

Objective 3.1: Physically improve the existing pedestrian ways by landscaping and other improvements.

 

Policy 3.1.1: Private development projects shall incorporate streetscape improvements (such as paver treatments, landscaping, lighting and seating areas), along adjacent pedestrian ways.

 

Policy 3.1.2: Public art shall be encouraged at appropriate locations throughout Town.

 

 

Policy 3.1.3: Flowers, trees, water features, and other landscaping shall be encouraged throughout the Town in locations adjacent to, or visible from, public areas.

 

Objective 3.2: Minimize the amount of vehicular traffic in the Village to the greatest extent possible.

 

Policy 3.2.1: Vehicular traffic will be eliminated or reduced to the absolute minimal necessary levels in the pedestrianized areas of the Village.

 

Goal #5: Increase and improve the capacity, efficiency, and aesthetics of the transportation and circulation system throughout the Village.

 

Objective 5.3: Concentrate the majority of interconnecting transit activity at the periphery of the Village to minimize vehicular traffic in pedestrianized areas.

 

Policy 5.3.1: The Vail Transportation Center shall be the primary pick up and drop off point for public transit and private shuttle vans and taxis.

 

Objective 5.4: Improve the streetscape of circulation corridors throughout the Village.

 

Policy 5.4.1: The Town shall work with the Colorado Division of Highways toward the implementation of a landscaped boulevard and parkway along the South Frontage Road.

 

Policy 5.4.2: Medians and right-of-ways shall be landscaped.

 

Vail Village Design Considerations

 

The Town of Vail adopted the Vail Village Design Considerations in 1980. The Design Considerations were revised in 1993. The Design Considerations are considered an integral part of the Vail Village Urban Design Plan. The Design Considerations are intended to:

 

guide growth and change in ways that will enhance and preserve the essential qualities of the Village; and

 

serve as design guidelines instead of rigid rules of development; and

 

help influence the form and design of buildings.

 

The Vail Village Design Considerations are divided into two categories (urban design considerations and architectural/landscape considerations):

 

1. URBAN DESIGN CONSIDERATIONS

 

These considerations relate to general, large-scale land use planning issues, as well as form considerations which affect more than one property or even whole areas. These considerations are primarily the purview of the Planning and Environmental Commission. The considerations include focuses on pedestrianization, vehicle penetration, streetscape framework, street enclosure, street edge, building height, views and focal points, service and delivery, and sun/shade. The specifics of these considerations are addressed by staff in Section VIII under Criterion D.

 

Town of Vail Zoning Regulations

 

Staff has reviewed the Town of Vail Zoning Regulations (Title 12, Vail Town Code). We believe the following code sections are relevant to the review of the applicant’s request:

 

Article E. Commercial Service Center (CSC) District (in part)

 

12-7E-1: Purpose:

 

The Commercial Service Center District is intended to provide sites for general shopping and commercial facilities serving the Town, together with limited multiple-family dwelling and lodge uses as may be appropriate without interfering with the basic commercial functions of the District. The Commercial Service Center District is intended to ensure adequate light, air, open space, and other amenities appropriate to permitted types of buildings and uses, and to maintain a convenient shopping center environment for permitted commercial uses.

 

12-7E-3: Permitted Uses:

 

The following uses shall be permitted in the CSC District:

 

Banks and financial institutions.

Eating and drinking establishments, including the following:

Bakeries and delicatessens with food service.

Cocktail lounges, taverns, and bars.

Coffee shops.

Fountains and sandwich shops.

Restaurants.

Personal services and repair shops, including the following:

Barbershops.

Beauty shops.

Business and office services.

Cleaning and laundry pick up agencies without bulk cleaning or dyeing.

Coin operated or self-service laundries.

Small appliance repair shops, excluding furniture repair.

Tailors and dressmakers.

Travel and ticket agencies.

Professional offices, business offices, and studios.

Retail stores and establishments without limit as to floor area including the following:

Apparel stores.

Art supply stores and galleries.

Bakeries and confectioneries, including preparation of products for sale on the premises.

Bookstores.

Building materials stores without outdoor storage.

Camera stores and photographic studios.

Candy stores.

Chinaware and glassware stores.

Delicatessens and specialty food stores.

Department and general merchandise stores.

Drugstores and pharmacies.

Florists.

Food stores.

Furniture stores.

Gift stores.

Hardware stores.

Hobby stores.

Household appliance stores.

Jewelry stores.

Leather goods stores.

Liquor stores.

Luggage stores.

Music and record stores.

Newsstands and tobacco stores.

Pet shops.

Photographic studios.

Radio and television broadcasting studios.

Radio and television stores and repair shops.

Sporting goods stores.

Stationery stores.

Supermarkets.

Toy stores.

Variety stores.

Yardage and dry goods stores.

 

Additional offices, businesses, or services determined to be similar to permitted uses in accordance with the provisions of section 12-7E-2 of this article.

 

12-7E-4: Conditional Uses:

 

The following conditional uses shall be permitted in the CSC district, subject to issuance of a conditional use permit in accordance with the provisions of chapter 16 of this title:

 

Any use permitted by section 12-7E-3 of this article, which is not conducted entirely within a building.

Bed and breakfast as further regulated by section 12-14-18 of this title.

Brew pubs.

Child daycare center.

Commercial laundry and cleaning services.

Dog kennel.

Major arcade.

Multiple-family dwellings and lodges.

Outdoor operation of the accessory uses as set forth in section 12-7E-5 of this article.

Private clubs.

Public buildings, grounds and facilities.

Public park and recreation facilities.

Public utility and public service uses.

Ski lifts and tows.

Theaters, meetings rooms, and convention facilities.

Type III employee housing units (EHU) as provided in chapter 13 of this title.

 

12-7E-5: Accessory Uses:

 

The following accessory uses shall be permitted in the CSC district:

 

Home occupations, subject to issuance of a home occupation permit in accordance with the provisions of section 12-14-12 of this title.

 

Minor arcade.

 

Swimming pools, tennis courts, patios, or other recreation facilities customarily incidental to conditional residential or lodge uses.

 

Other uses customarily incidental and accessory to permitted or conditional uses, and necessary for the operation thereof.

 

12-7E-7: Setbacks:

 

In the CSC district, the minimum front setback shall be twenty feet (20'), the minimum side setback shall be twenty feet (20'), and the minimum rear setback shall be twenty feet (20').

 

12-7E-8: Height:

 

For a flat or mansard roof, the height of buildings shall not exceed thirty five feet (35'). For a sloping roof, the height of buildings shall not exceed thirty eight feet (38').

 

12-7E-9: Density Control:

 

Not more than forty (40) square feet of gross residential floor area (GRFA) shall be permitted for each one hundred (100) square feet of buildable site area, and gross residential floor area shall not exceed fifty percent (50%) of total building floor area on any site. Total density shall not exceed eighteen (18) dwelling units per acre of buildable site area.

 

A dwelling unit in a multiple-family building may include one attached accommodation unit no larger than one-third (1/3) of the total floor area of the dwelling.

 

12-7E-10: Site Coverage:

 

Site coverage shall not exceed seventy five percent (75%) of the total site area.

 

12-7E-11: Landscaping and Site Development:

 

At least twenty percent (20%) of the total site shall be landscaped. The minimum width and length of any area qualifying as landscaping shall be fifteen feet (15') with a minimum area not less than three hundred (300) square feet.

 

12-7E-12: Parking and Loading:

 

Off-street parking and loading shall be provided in accordance with chapter 10 of this title. At least one-half (1/2) of the required parking shall be located within the main building or buildings. No parking or loading area shall be located in any required front setback area.

 

12-7E-13: Location of Business Actrivity:

 

A. Limitations; Exception: All permitted and conditional uses by sections 12-7E-3 and 12-7E-4 of this article, shall be operated and conducted entirely within a building except for permitted parking and loading areas and such activities as may be specifically authorized to be unenclosed by a conditional use permit and the outdoor display of goods.

 

B. Outdoor Display: The area to be used for outdoor display must be located directly in front of the establishment displaying the goods and entirely upon the establishment's own property. Sidewalks, building entrances and exits, driveways and streets shall not be obstructed by outdoor display.

 

Article 12-9A: Special Development (SDD) District (in part)

 

Section 12-9A-1: Purpose:

The purpose of the special development district is to encourage flexibility and creativity in the development of land in order to promote its most appropriate use; to improve the design character and quality of the new development with the town; to facilitate the adequate and economical provision of streets and utilities; to preserve the natural and scenic features of open space areas; and to further the overall goals of the community as stated in the Vail comprehensive plan. An approved development plan for a special development district, in conjunction with the property's underlying zone district, shall establish the requirements for guiding development and uses of property included in the special development district. The special development district does not apply to and is not available in the following zone districts: Hillside residential, single-family, duplex, primary/secondary. The elements of the development plan shall be as outlined in section 12-9A-6 of this article.

 

Chapter 12-16: Conditional Uses Permits (in part)

 

Section 12-16-1: Purpose; Limitations

In order to provide the flexibility necessary to achieve the objectives of this title, specified uses are permitted in certain districts subject to the granting of a conditional use permit. Because of their unusual or special characteristics, conditional uses require review so that they may be located properly with respect to the purposes of this title and with respect to their effects on surrounding properties. The review process prescribed in this chapter is intended to assure compatibility and harmonious development between conditional uses and surrounding properties in the Town at large. Uses listed as conditional uses in the various districts may be permitted subject to such conditions and limitations as the Town may prescribe to insure that the location and operation of the conditional uses will be in accordance with the development objectives of the Town and will not be detrimental to other uses or properties. Where conditions cannot be devised, to achieve these objectives, applications for conditional use permits shall be denied.

 

 

 

VI. ZONING ANALYSIS

 

According to the application information provided by the applicant, staff has performed an analysis of the proposal in relation to the requirements of the Vail Code. The deviations to the prescribed development standards are shown in bold text in the table below.

 

Zoning: Commercial Service Center

Land Use Plan Designation: Vail Village Master Plan Study Area (High Density Residential/Mixed Use)

Current Land Use: Mixed Use/Residential

 

Development Standard Allowed Proposed

Lot Area: 20,000 sq. ft. 115,129 sq. ft. (2.643 acres)

 

Buildable Area: 115,129 sq. ft.

 

Setbacks:

Front (Frontage Road): 20' 0’ to 19’

West Side: 20' 2’ (loading dock) to 25’

East Side: 20’ 0’ to 25’

Front (Meadow Drive): 20’ 0’ to 150’

 

Building Height: 38’ 99.9 ft.

 

Density: 18 units/acre 28.4 units /acre

47.5 D.U.s 75 D.U.s

 

GRFA: 46,051.6 sq. ft. 210,054 sq. ft.

(40%) (182%)

 

Site Coverage: 86,346.8 sq. ft. 107,772 sq. ft.

(75%) (93.6%)

 

Landscape Area: Total 23,025.8 sq. ft. 42,255 sq. ft.

(20% total site) (36.7% total site)

Minimum Softscape of total permitted

18,420.6 sq. ft. 14,898 sq. ft.

(80%) (35.3%)

Maximum Hardscape of total permitted

4,605.1 sq. ft. 27,357 sq. ft.

(20%) (64.7%)

 

Parking: 246 spaces 338 spaces

(92 surplus spaces proposed to be in private parking club)

 

BOLD indicates deviations from the prescribed development standards.

 

 

 

 

VII. SURROUNDING LAND USES AND ZONING

 

Land Use Zoning

North: CDOT ROW None

South: Mixed Use Commercial Core II District/Public Accommodation

East: Public Parking General Use District

West: Mixed Use SDD No. 6

 

VIII. THE SPECIAL DEVELOPMENT DISTRICT ESTABLISHMENT AND REVIEW PROCESS

 

Chapter 12-9 of the Town Code provides for the establishment of special development districts in the Town of Vail. According to Section 12-9A-1, the purpose of a special development district is,

 

"To encourage flexibility and creativity in the development of land, in order to promote its most appropriate use; to improve the design character and quality of the new development within the Town; to facilitate the adequate and economical provision of streets and utilities; to preserve the natural and scenic features of open space areas; and to further the overall goals of the community as stated in the Vail Comprehensive Plan. An approved development plan for a Special Development District, in conjunction with the property’s underlying zone district, shall establish the requirements for guiding development and uses of property included in the Special Development District."

 

An approved development plan is the principal document in guiding the development, uses, and activities of the special development district. The development plan shall contain all relevant material and information necessary to establish the parameters to which the special development district shall adhere. The development plan may consist of, but not be limited to: the approved site plan; floor plans, building sections, and elevations: vicinity plan; parking plan; preliminary open space/landscape plan; densities; and permitted, conditional, and accessory uses.

 

The determination of permitted, conditional and accessory uses shall be made by the Planning and Environmental Commission and Town Council as part of the formal review of the proposed development plan. Unless further restricted through the review of the proposed special development district, permitted, conditional and accessory uses shall be limited to those permitted, conditional and accessory uses in the property’s underlying zone district.

 

The Town Code provides nine design criteria which shall be used as the principal criteria in evaluating the merits of the proposed special development district. It shall be the burden of the applicant to demonstrate that submittal material and the proposed development plan comply with each of the following standards, or demonstrate that one or more of them is not applicable, or that a practical solution consistent with the public interest has been achieved. The following is a staff analysis of the project’s compliance with the nine SDD review criteria:

 

 

 

 

 

A. Consideration of Factors Regarding Special Development Districts:

 

Design compatibility and sensitivity to the immediate environment, neighborhood and adjacent properties relative to architectural design, scale, bulk, building height, buffer zones, identity, character, visual integrity and orientation.

 

The Crossroads development site is located along the north side of East Meadow Drive across from Village Center. An attached vicinity map has been provided for reference (Attachment A). The development site is adjoined on the north by the South Frontage Road, on the east by Village Center Road and the Vail Village Parking Structure, on the south by East Meadow Drive and Village Center, and to the west by Vail Village Inn Phase III. All of these surrounding properties have different zoning designations and thus must comply with differing development standards.

 

Although the neighboring properties must adhere to different zoning requirements, the buildings constructed on the neighboring properties are all two to seven story tall buildings. According to research of Town files, the surrounding properties have varying building heights. For instance, the new One Willow Bridge project (Swiss Chalet) will be 50 feet tall, and the Vail Village Inn Phase III varies in height from 68 feet along the Frontage Road to 25 feet along East Meadow Drive. The applicant is proposing heights of 93 feet (historic grade)/87.5 feet (finished grade) along the Frontage Road and 63.3 feet (historic grade)/56 feet (finished grade) on the portion of the building located in the southwest corner of the property along East Meadow Drive. The proposed heights of the structure along the western property line range from 84 to 63 feet (historic grade)/79 feet to 56 feet (finished grade). The tallest point on the structure is 99.9 feet above historic grade on the southern end of the main ridge above the entry to the building.

 

Since the January 18, 2005, Council meeting the applicant has reduced the proposed pitch of many of the roofs on the structure which had the effect of lowering many portions of the building by four (4) feet or more. In selected areas the reduction has been much greater, between 12 and 28 feet, as is the case along the western property line. Please see the sheets provided in the attached plans which depict the lowering of the structure. Staff believes that the proposed height will set a new precedence as it will be taller than any building in Town. However, staff believes that the deviation in height is offset by the development potential lost by proposing a 24,130 square foot public plaza (Vail Village Master Plan recommends a public plaza in this location) and the other public benefits.

 

In order to assess whether or not the deviations proposed by the project are outweighed by the benefits staff performed an analysis which took the area of the plaza and multiplied it by the allowable GRFA factor (40%). The allowable amount of GRFA was then multiplied by the Vail Village Master Plans maximum number of stories (3-4 stories). Staff selected a factor of 3.5 stories to multiply the developable plaza area by as it was felt it was a reasonable expectation for the height of the structure which might be located in the location of the plaza. When the allowable GRFA is multiplied by the number of recommended developable number of stories this provides an approximate idea of the amount of GRFA which could be constructed on the area being designated as public plaza. The next step was to subtract the amount of GRFA located within the setbacks and above the recommended maximum height in the Master plan of 78 feet on this portion of the site. Upon completion of this calculation it is found that the project is in excess of the amount of GRFA displaced by the proposed public plaza by approximately 121 square feet of GRFA. Therefore it is confirmed that the proposed public plaza has offset a majority of the proposals GRFA encroachments of into setbacks and above the 78 foot height recommended in the Vail Village Master Plan. However, staff believes the deviation of 121 square feet in excess GRFA is outweighed by the proposed 5 berth loading and delivery facility which will be made available to the public, the two proposed public restrooms (870 s.f. total) and the installation of the complete streetscape improvements on Village Center Drive and East Meadow Drive.

 

Area of Proposed Public Plaza: 24,130 s.f.

CSC Allowable GRFA %: .40

Amount of GRFA: 9,652 s.f.

Number of Developable Stories: x3.5

Square Footage of GRFA: 33,782 s.f.

Amount of GRFA in Setbacks: -21,014 s.f.

Remaining GRFA of Public Plaza: 12,768 s.f.

Amount of GRFA on Floor 6: -12,889 s.f.

Amount of GRFA in excess: -121 s.f.

 

The computer model shows those portions of the Crossroads roof which exceed the heights granted at Four Seasons and Vail Plaza Hotel. Staff believes that the area of roof over the established heights of Vail Plaza Hotel and Four Seasons is offset by a combination of the public plaza, loading and delivery facility, public restrooms, and proposed streetscape improvements.

 

In regard to setbacks the One Willow Bridge project varies between 0 feet (west end) and 20 feet. Setbacks along the east property line for Vail Village Inn Phase III vary between 15 and 55 feet. The proposed Crossroads development has setbacks along the north and east property lines which vary from one foot to 25 feet. Along the western property line the proposed Crossroads has a one-story enclosed loading facility which is within the required setback (3 feet off property line at closest location). Along East Meadow Drive the setbacks vary from 150 feet along the plaza to zero setback in the southeast and 4 feet in the southwest corners. Staff previously had concerns with the setback of the building along East Meadow Drive and the structure located in the southwest corner. Staff believed that it may be appropriate to have minimal setback along East Meadow Drive for several stories including a roof and then the structure would step back 15 to 20 feet before continuing up. The applicant has worked extensively on the portion of the structure located in the southwest portion of the site. The ridge is now 56 feet above grade which is six (6) feet taller than the actual height of the One Willow Bridge project from the grade of East Meadow Drive. The height of 56 feet (actual height above finished grade) is still located at a 4 foot setback from the property line for a distance of 44 feet along East Meadow Drive. The length of the structure along East Meadow Drive has been reduced from 52 feet to 44 feet. Staff and Jeff Winston believe that the height of 56 feet over a span of 44 feet is an acceptable design as it creates a "neck down effect" between to more open public spaces, the proposed Crossroads plaza and the Vail Village Inn plaza. To address the concerns of staff and the representatives of Vail Village Inn Phase III the proposal has been revised to remove all portions of the building located with the setback along the western property line with the exception of the enclosed loading and delivery facility which has access off of the South Frontage Road. The subterranean improvements along the western property line have been pulled back from the property line to be a minimum distance of 10 feet from the property line.

The architectural design of the Crossroads development, like its neighbors, is governed by the design guidelines prescribed in Chapter 11, Design Review, of the Vail Town Code and by the recommendations Vail Village Master Plan. As such, the architectural design of the proposed development is intended to be compatible with the unique European alpine village character prescribed for Vail Village. The exterior design of the development is a mixture of stone, metal and wood. Many of the finer details have not been resolved in the two presentations made to the Design Review Board. Since the January 18, 2005, Town Council meeting the proposed project has undergone revision and refinement on the architectural design of the structure. Both the staff and Jeff Winston agree that the applicant has made positive changes to the architecture and believe the overall architecture complies with the Town’s guidelines. The concerns of staff and Jeff Winston are the use of large window systems especially in the upper portions of the structure, the appearance of panelized-type materials in some locations on the building, and the emphasis on the vertical verse the horizontal. Staff has addressed this project’s conformance with the Urban Design Guidelines in Criteria D of this section. Staff believes the architecture of the structure is beginning to incorporate further "Bavarian" elements so as to fit in more harmoniously with the community. Staff believes that with additional work with the Design Review Board this project can fit into the overall architectural theme of Vail Village.

 

The Vail Village Master Plan addresses the Crossroads development site throughout the Plan. In regard to building height, the Plan includes a conceptual map identifying potential heights of existing and future structures and states:

 

"The building heights expressed on this Illustrative Plan are intended to provide general guidelines. Additional study should be made during specific project review relative to a building’s height impact on the streetscape and relationship to surrounding structures."

 

The Plan identifies the northern portion of the Crossroads development site along the Frontage Road as being 5 to 6 stories in height and the southern portion as being 3 to 4 stories in height (the Plan identifies a story as being 9 feet in height and the Plan does not include roof structure). A copy of Conceptual Building Height Plan is attached for reference (Attachment C). Since the last hearing with the Planning and Environmental Commission and the Town Council staff has located the minutes of the adoption of the Lionshead Redevelopment Master Plan in which the PEC had recognized a building story as being considered 11 feet 6 inches plus a roof.

 

Most recently the Tivoli Lodge, identified as being 3 to 4 stories tall in the Plan, established SDD #37 in order to achieve a 56-foot height limitation. Although the Tivoli Lodge is not zoned Commercial Service Center, it is addressed within the Vail Village Master Plan. The Tivoli Lodge contended that the 48-foot limitation did not adequately address current hotel accommodation building trends. A 48-foot height limitation permits 9-foot floor to floor sections with an additional 12 feet for sloping roofs as recommended in the various town master plans (9’ X 4 floors +12’ = 48’). According to the applicants, the proposal has achieved the heights of 99.9 feet at its highest point, down to 66 feet along East Meadow Drive as the floor plates they are proposing are 11 feet 6 inches from floor to floor except on the two retail portions of the building where the floor to floor height is 13 feet and 14 feet. The applicant states that consistent 11 foot 6 inch floor plates are due to the need to provide modern day living demands including air conditioning, 9-foot ceilings and flexibility in unit design. Furthermore, at this site there are the additional issues of I-70 traffic noise and exposure to the sun in this location. Once the units are dry-walled, the ceiling heights in the units will be 9 feet. In addition the applicant has proposed floor plates measuring 14 feet in height for the commercial levels to accommodate the additional height necessary to operate a bowling alley’s lane equipment and stadium seated theaters. The height of the floor plates in the residential levels and the added height necessary for the operation of a bowling alley and theaters explain the proposed heights on the building exceeding the recommended heights identified in the Vail Village Master Plan. Staff believes the height of the building in general is appropriate in relation to the uses proposed if the Commission agrees that an 11 foot 6 inch floor plate is appropriate for properties located within the scope of the Vail Village Master Plan.

 

Staff has generally accepted an 11-foot floor-to-floor building plate on previous projects located within the scope of the Vail Village Master Plan such as the Tivoli Lodge and the Manor Vail Lodge (the PEC voted to adopt 11 foot 6 inch floor to floor in Lionshead as a part of the Lionshead Redevelopment Master Plan). In addition, it has been previously determined that a roof structure is at an appropriate size when it is 12 feet from eave to ridge, as identified above. This particular project, according to the applicant, because of its proximity to the Interstate and large window areas (heat gain) will need to have climate control equipment which the two previous projects did not. If a floor-to-floor plate of 11 feet 6 inches and a 12-foot tall roof structure is acceptable the maximum height of structure, according to the Vail Village Master Plan should be 81 feet (11.5’ X 6 stories + 12’ = 81 feet) along the northern portion of the site and 58 feet (11.5’ X 4 stories + 12’ = 58) feet along the southern portion of the site. However, given the width of the proposed building forms and roof pitches, the proposed building will require more than 12 feet of roof height.

 

Uses, activity and density which provide a compatible, efficient and workable relationship with surrounding uses and activity.

The uses, activities, and densities for the Crossroads development site are prescribed by the underlying zoning. According to the Official Town of Vail Zoning Map, the underlying zoning for the proposed special development district is Commercial Service Center zone district. The Commercial Service Center zone district encourages the development of commercial facilities serving the Town with limited multiple-family dwellings at a density of eighteen (18) dwelling units per acre. However, the Vail Village Master Plan, adopted in 1990, identifies the site as being approximately three quarters medium/high density residential and one quarter mixed use. See attached copy of the Land Use Plan from the Vail Village Master Plan (Attachment D). The proposal is to construct permitted uses such retail shops, restaurants and bars, offices, on-site accessory uses such as the ice skating rink, and conditional uses such as a major arcade, bowling alley, movie theaters, 75 multiple-family dwelling units, and a private parking club. The applicant has requested the appropriate conditional use permits which will be addressed in later sections of this memorandum.

 

The applicant has suggested that the proposed bowling alley, 3 screen theater, and sports bar /arcade activity center are public amenities as they bring life and vitality to the Town. In previous memorandums to the Commission, staff identified that the uses will likely fill a niche which is missing in Town.

 

The proposed application has two levels of at-grade or above-grade retail surrounding the proposed plaza. Staff has expressed concerns in previous meetings regarding the continuous arc shaped frontage of the retail. Staff’s concerns were two-fold; first, does such a design lure visitors and locals to shop in the environment and; second, the geometric properties of an arc will not allow for material changes to the façade’s of the individual tenant spaces. The Design Review Board in their meetings had also expressed a concern about the limited ability to individualize a tenant space store front. In response to the concern expressed by staff, the Design Review Board, the Planning and Environmental Commission, and Town Council the applicant has brought additional staff onto their team to address the commercial experience. Since the last meeting the applicant has prepared several drawings which exhibit how the retail storefronts could be individualized. The staff and Jeff Winston believe the changes made by the applicant were a tremendous step in alleviating our concerns regarding the design. However, staff, Jeff Winston, and the applicant believe that working with the Design Review Board will produce a functional and active design for the retail levels.

 

The above criterion specifically identifies the proposed density of a project as needing to be compatible with surrounding properties. This property is restricted to 18 dwelling units/acre per the underlying zoning. The applicant is proposing a density of 28.4 dwelling units/acre with 210,054 square feet of GRFA. The neighboring property to the south, the One Willow Bridge/Sonnenalp Hotel development, is limited to 25 dwelling units/acre, which the new development has proposed 8 dwelling units for a density of 2.9 dwelling units/acre with 135,184 square feet of GRFA. One Willow Bridge/Sonnenalp Hotel was substantially accommodation units (123 units) and fractional fee units (14 units) which do not count towards density. The adjacent property to the west, Vail Village Inn Phase III (SDD #6), is limited to 25 dwelling units/acre with the underlying zoning. In the Ordinance adopting SDD #6 it is not clear the number of dwelling units allowed, however, it identifies a minimum of 148 accommodation units and 64,267 square feet of GRFA shall be located in Phase IV of the project, however the overall project has a much greater density. As can be seen the proposed Crossroads project has a greater density than the constructed or proposed neighboring properties and more GRFA.

 

Staff believes the proposed Crossroads redevelopment complies with this portion of the criterion as the proposed public benefits outweigh all deviations proposed.

 

Employee Housing Requirements

 

As indicated in a number of the goals and objectives of the Town’s Master Plans, providing affordable housing for employees is a critical issue which should be addressed through the planning process for special development district proposals. In reviewing the proposal for employee housing needs, staff relied on the Town of Vail Employee Housing Report. This report has been used by the staff in the past to evaluate employee housing needs. The guidelines contained within the report were used most recently in the review of the Austria Haus, Marriott, Four Seasons, Manor Vail Lodge, and Special Development District No. 6 - Vail Village Inn development proposals.

 

The Employee Housing Report was prepared for the Town by the consulting firm Rosall, Remmen and Cares. The report provides the recommended ranges of employee housing units needed based on the type of use and the amount of floor area dedicated to each use. Utilizing the guidelines prescribed in the Employee Housing Report, staff analyzed the incremental increase of employees (square footage per use) that results from the redevelopment.

 

 

The figures identified in the report are based on surveys of the commercial-use employment needs of the Town of Vail and other mountain resort communities. As of the drafting of the report, Telluride, Aspen and Whistler, B.C. had "employment generation" ordinances requiring developers to provide affordable housing for a percentage of the new employees resulting from commercial development. "New" employees are defined as the incremental increase in employment needs resulting from commercial redevelopment. Each of the communities assesses a different percentage of affordable housing a developer must provide for the new employees. For example, Telluride requires developers to provide housing for 40% (0.40) of the new employees, Aspen requires that 60% (0.60) of the new employees are provided housing, and Whistler requires that 100% (1.00) of the new employees be provided housing by the developer. In comparison, Vail has conservatively determined that developers shall provide housing for 15% (0.15) or 30% (0.30) of the new employees resulting from commercial development. When a project is proposed to exceed the density allowed by the underlying zone district, the 30% (0.30) figure is used in the calculation. If a project is proposed at, or below, the density allowed by the underlying zone district, the 15% (0.15) figure is used. The Crossroads special development district does exceed the density permitted by the underlying zone district in both number of dwelling units and GRFA so the 30% ratio was used.

 

Proposed Project

 

Employee Generation Calculations – Middle of Range

a) Multi-Family (Dwelling Units)

75 new units proposed @ (0.4/unit) = 30.0 employees

b) Retail and Service Commercial

45,000 sq. ft. @ (5.0/1000 sq. ft.) = 225.0 employees

c) Bar/Restaurant/Arcade/Theater/Bowling

13,000 sq. ft. @ (5.0/1000 sq. ft.) = 65.0 employees

 

 

320.0 employees

Existing Crossroads Project

Employee Generation Calculations – Middle of Range

a) Multi-Familiy (Dwelling Units)

22 units existing @ (0.4/unit) = 8.8 employees

b) Retail and Service Commercial

22,116 sq. ft. @ (5.0/1000 sq. ft.) = 110.58 employees

c) Office: Professional/Other

20,000 sq. ft. @ (5.0/1000 sq. ft.) = 100.0 employees

d) Bar/Restaurant/Night Club/Theater

13,550 sq. ft. @ (5.0/1000 sq. ft.) = 67.75 employees

Bank

2,750 sq. ft. @ (2.5/000 sq. ft.) = 6.88 employees

Grocery

6,240 sq. ft. @ (1.5/1000 sq. ft.) = 9.36 employees

 

 

303.37 employees

 

320.00 new employees

- 303.37 exisiting employees

16.63 net new employees

x.30

4.99 required # beds

 

According to the calculations above, the applicant must establish 5 new deed-restricted employee beds ("pillows"). The applicants are proposing to provide the required deed-restricted employee housing units off-site through the purchase of units throughout Town or through a pay-in-lieu program if it established by the Town prior to requesting a Temporary Certificate of Occupancy. The applicant will deed restrict the units under the appropriate deed restrictions depending upon which zone district the property is located within the community under the appropriate review process. In the previous meeting the Commission asked for greater detail on how a "bed" will be defined in regards to the deed restricting of units. For example if the applicant purchased a structure containing three bedrooms this could potentially count as six employee "beds". As expressed by the Commission a unit as described previously may likely be rented by a family and would still count as six employee beds. Staff recommends that the developer submit to staff, prior to issuance of a Temporary Certificate of Occupancy or Certificate of Occupancy, the location of the units proposed to be deed restricted along with the appropriate review application which is applicable or remit payment in funds commensurate with any adopted pay-in-lieu program. Please see the applicant’s employee housing unit proposal which is attached for reference (Attachment E).

 

Staff believes that the proposal does comply with this portion of the criterion.

 

Compliance with parking and loading requirements as outlined in Chapter 12-10 of the Vail Town Code.

 

As indicated in the Zoning Analysis outlined in Section VI of this memorandum, the total number of required parking spaces for the Crossroads project is 246 spaces. The applicants are proposing to provide a total of 338 spaces, all of which are to be provided in the underground parking structure. The 92 additional parking spaces proposed to be constructed above and beyond that which is required are proposed to be placed in a private parking club. The proposed subterranean parking structure permits a public plaza on the surface which contains a proposed ice skating rink.

 

In order to establish a private parking club offering parking spaces, the Town Code requires the review and approval of a conditional use permit by the Commission. The applicant is proposing to establish a 92 stall private parking club. Staff addresses the criteria for the establishment of a private parking club later in this section.

 

The applicant is proposing to utilize all of the 92 surplus parking spaces in a private parking club in which participants would lease a space or potentially purchase if the applicant chooses to condominiumize the spaces. The applicant desires to maintain ownership of the parking spaces to avoid not having enough parking for the retail, restaurant, and office uses if the project becomes as successful as anticipated. There is a possibility that as various tenants begin to design and occupy their spaces that additional surplus parking may become available. When calculating the required parking staff and the applicant were conservative in estimating what percentage of retail and restaurant spaces will become areas not assessed parking. An analysis will need to be run as each tenant goes in for building permit and as tenants change out in the future. The applicant can return before the Commission at a later date if additional surplus parking is created based on tenant make-up to amend the conditional use permit. Staff recommends that the developer be permitted to establish a 92 parking space private club.

 

The applicant has proposed a five berth loading and delivery facility which is the maximum required for this project. The proposed facility will be accessed off of the Frontage Road and made available to neighboring properties for their loading and delivery needs as well. The proposed loading and delivery facility is entirely enclosed and large vehicles can make all turning movements inside the structure. The applicant and the staff agree that the location, configuration, and public use of the loading facility are a public benefit to the Town as it reduces conflicts with pedestrians, reduces impacts due to being enclosed, and its availability to the public for use. Staff recommends that through the Developer Improvement Agreement the developer enter into an agreement with the Town to include the loading and delivery facility in the overall loading and delivery system for the Town of Vail.

 

Staff believes that the application complies with this criterion.

 

D. Conformity with the applicable elements of the Vail Comprehensive Plan, Town policies and Urban Design Plan.

 

The goals contained in the Vail Land Use Plan are to be used as the Town’s policy guidelines during the review process for the establishment of a special development district. Staff has reviewed the Vail Land Use Plan and believes the following policies are relevant to the review of this proposal:

 

1.0 General Growth/Development

 

1.1 Vail should continue to grow in a controlled environment, maintaining a balance between residential, commercial and recreational uses to serve both the visitor and the permanent resident.

 

1.2 The quality of the environment including air, water and other natural resources should be protected as the Town grows.

 

1.3 The quality of development should be maintained and upgraded whenever possible.

 

1.12 Vail should accommodate most of the additional growth in existing developed areas (infill areas).

 

 

 

2.0 Skier/Tourist Concerns

 

2.1 The community should emphasize its role as a destination resort while accommodating day skiers.

 

2.2 The ski area owner, the business community and the Town leaders should work together closely to make existing facilities and the Town function more efficiently.

 

2.3 The ski area owner, the business community and the Town leaders should work together to improve facilities for day skiers.

 

2.4 The community should improve summer recreational and cultural opportunities to encourage summer tourism.

 

3.0 Commercial

 

3.1 The hotel bed base should be preserved and used more efficiently.

 

3.2 The Village and Lionshead areas are the best location for hotels to serve the future needs of the destination skiers.

 

3.3 Hotels are important to the continued success of the Town of Vail, therefore conversion to condominiums should be discouraged.

 

3.4 Commercial growth should be concentrated in existing commercial areas to accommodate both local and visitor needs.

 

4.0 Village Core / Lionshead

 

4.1 Future commercial development should continue to occur primarily in existing commercial areas. Future commercial development in the Core areas needs to be carefully controlled to facilitate access and delivery.

 

4.2 Increased density in the Core areas is acceptable so long as the existing character of each area is preserved thorough implementation of the Urban Design Guide Plan.

 

4.3 The ambiance of Vail Village is important to the identity of Vail and should be preserved. (scale, alpine character, small town feeling, mountains, natural setting, intimate size, cosmopolitan feeling, environmental quality.)

 

5.0 Residential

 

5.1 Additional residential growth should continue to occur primarily in existing, platted areas and as appropriate in new areas where high hazards do not exist.

 

5.3 Affordable employee housing should be made available through private efforts, assisted by limited incentives, provided by the Town of Vail with appropriate restrictions.

 

5.4 Residential growth should keep pace with the marketplace demands for a full range of housing types.

 

5.5 The existing employee housing base should be preserved and upgraded. Additional employee housing needs should be accommodated at varied sites throughout the community.

 

According to the Official Town of Vail Land Use Plan map, the applicant’s proposed redevelopment site is located with the "Vail Village Master Plan" land use category. Pursuant to the Plan, the "Vail Village Master Plan" land use category description,

 

"Vail Village has been designated separately as a mixed use area and accounts for 77 acres or about 2% of the Plan area. This area has not been analyzed in this Plan document because the Vail Village Master Plan study addressed this area specifically in more detail."

 

Staff believes that the application complies with the goals and objectives identified above.

 

Vail Village Master Plan

 

Staff believes that the following stated goals of the Vail Village Master Plan are applicable to this application:

 

Goal #2: To foster a strong tourist industry and promote year-around economic health and viability for the Village and for the community as a whole.

 

Objective 2.4: Encourage the development of a variety of new commercial activity where compatible with existing land uses.

 

Policy 2.4.1: Commercial infill development consistent with established horizontal zoning regulations shall be encouraged to provide activity generators, accessible greenspaces, public plazas, and streetscape improvements to the pedestrian network throughout the Village.

Policy 2.4.2: Activity that provides night life and evening entertainment for both the guest and the community shall be encouraged.

 

Objective 2.5: Encourage the continued upgrading, renovation and maintenance of existing lodging and commercial facilities to better serve the needs of our guests.

 

Policy 2.5.1: Recreation amenities, common areas, meeting facilities and other amenities shall be preserved and enhanced as a part of any redevelopment of lodging properties.

Policy 2.5.2: The Town will use the maximum flexibility possible in the interpretation of building and fire codes in order to facilitate building renovations without compromising life, health, and safety considerations.

 

Objective 2.6: Encourage the development of affordable housing units through the efforts of the private sector.

 

Policy 2.6.1: Employee housing units may be required as part of any new or redeveloped project requesting density over that allowed by existing zoning.

 

Policy 2.6.2: Employee housing shall be developed with appropriate restrictions so as to insure their availability and affordability to the local work force.

 

Policy 2.6.3: The Town of Vail may facilitate in the development of affordable housing by providing limited assistance.

 

Goal #3: To recognize as a top priority the enhancement of the walking experience throughout the Village.

 

Objective 3.1: Physically improve the existing pedestrian ways by landscaping and other improvements.

 

Policy 3.1.1: Private development projects shall incorporate streetscape improvements (such as paver treatments, landscaping, lighting and seating areas), along adjacent pedestrian ways.

 

Policy 3.1.2: Public art shall be encouraged at appropriate locations throughout Town.

 

Policy 3.1.3: Flowers, trees, water features, and other landscaping shall be encouraged throughout the Town in locations adjacent to, or visible from, public areas.

 

Goal #4: To preserve existing open space areas and expand greenspace opportunities.

 

Objective 4.1: Improve existing open space areas and create new plazas with greenspaces and pocket parks. Recognize the different roles of each type pf open space in forming the overall fabric of the Village.

 

Policy 4.1.1: Active recreation facilities shall be preserved (or relocated to accessible locations elsewhere in the Village) in any development or redevelopment of property in Vail Village.

 

 

Policy 4.1.2: The development of new public plazas, and improvement to existing plazas (public art, streetscape features, seating areas, etc.), shall be strongly encouraged to reinforce their roles as attractive people places.

 

Policy 4.1.3: With the exception of ski base-related facilities, existing natural open space areas at the base of Vail Mountain and throughout Vail Village shall be preserved as open space.

 

Policy 4.1.4: Open space improvements including the addition of accessible greenspace as described or graphically shown in the Vail Village Master Plan and/or Urban Design Guide Plan, will be required in conjunction with private infill or redevelopment projects.

 

Goal #5: Increase and improve the capacity, efficiency, and aesthetics of the transportation and circulation system throughout the Village.

 

Objective 5.1: Meet parking demands with public and private parking facilities.

 

Policy 5.1.1: For new development that is located outside the Commercial Core I Zone District, on-site parking shall be provided (rather than paying into the parking fund) to meet any additional parking demand as required by the zoning code.

 

Policy 5.1.2: The expansion of the Vail Village parking structure shall maximize the number of additional parking spaces available for public parking.

 

Policy 5.1.3: Seek locations for additional structured public and private parking.

 

Policy 5.1.4: Continue to promote the lease parking program as a means for maximizing the utilization of private parking spaces.

 

Policy 5.1.5: Redevelopment projects shall be strongly encouraged to provide underground or visually concealed parking.

 

Objective 5.3: Concentrate the majority of interconnecting transit activity at the periphery of the Village to minimize vehicular traffic in pedestrianized areas.

 

Policy 5.3.1: The Vail Transportation Center shall be the primary pick up and drop off point for public transit and private shuttle vans and taxis.

 

Objective 5.4: Improve the streetscape of circulation corridors throughout the Village.

 

Policy 5.4.1: The Town shall work with the Colorado Division of Highways toward the implementation of a landscaped boulevard and parkway along the South Frontage Road.

 

Policy 5.4.2: Medians and right-of-ways shall be landscaped.

 

Goal #6: To ensure the continued improvement of the vital operational elements of the Village.

 

Objective 6.1: Provide service and delivery facilities for existing and new development.

 

Objective 6.2: Provide for the safe and efficient functions of fire, police and public utilities within the context of an aesthetically pleasing resort setting.

 

Policy 6.2.1: Development projects and other improvements in Vail Village shall be reviewed by respective Town Departments to identify both the impacts of the proposal and potential mitigating measures.

 

Policy 6.2.2: Minor improvements (landscaping, decorative paving, open dining decks, etc.), may be permitted on Town of Vail land or right-of-way (with review and approval by the Town Council and Planning and Environmental Commission when applicable) provided that Town operations such as snow removal, street maintenance and fire department access and operation are able to be maintained at current levels. Special design (i.e. heated pavement), maintenance fees, or other considerations may be required to offset impacts on Town services.

 

Staff believes that the application complies with all of the goals, objectives, and policies identified above. Previously staff expressed that the proposal needed to address Objective 2.3. The proposal now includes a total of eight (8) lock-off units to increase the likelihood that the project will have a greater occupancy rate. The applicant has submitted a rental program to increase the likelihood of owners placing their units into a rental pool (Attachment F). Staff believes the applicant has made great progress in the architectural design and believes that through the Design Review process the architecture can be resolved. Staff, in previous memorandums, expressed concerns about the scale of the structure and its relationship to neighboring properties. Through the use of the computer model staff believes that the revised proposal will now be at an appropriate scale to neighboring properties, Four Seasons, and Vail Plaza Hotel. While it is true that this proposal will set a new precedence for height (99.9 feet) staff believes that the height and other deviations are offset by the combination of benefits such as the public plaza, streetscape, and incorporation of the loading and delivery facility in the overall loading and delivery system for the Town. Staff under Criterion A addresses the benefits and reasoning behind staff’s belief that the new precedence for height has been offset by various elements of the proposal.

 

Town of Vail Streetscape Master Plan

 

The Town’s Streetscape Master Plan does identify East Meadow Drive and Village Center Road within the East Meadow Drive – Willow Bridge Road to Vail Valley Drive portion of the Town of Vail Streetscape Master Plan. The Plan identifies the following problems with the existing conditions within this sub-area:

 

The need to separate buses from pedestrians;

The need to provide a more comfortable shopping experience;

The need to restrict unnecessary vehicular traffic;

The need to maintain access to existing lodge units; and

The need to screen parking and accommodate loading and delivery vehicles.

The Plan also identifies several key elements, landscaping, and site amenities for the East Meadow Drive – Willow Bridge Road to Vail Valley Drive sub-area which include:

The asphalt road surface would be replaced by concrete unit pavers in most areas where pedestrians share the street with vehicles. IN the restricted access zone south of the Village parking structure, the pedestrian path would be paved with concrete unit pavers. However, the bus lane would remain asphalt. Additionally, the Willow Bridge Road street surface, from the north side of Willow Bridge to the intersection of East Meadow Drive, would also remain asphalt.

Replacing the triangular planter at the intersection of East Meadow Drive and Willow Bridge Road with a larger circular planter that is centered in the intersection. In addition, the intersection will be accented with a special paving treatment and will act as a focal point.

Village Center Road would be narrowed to a minimum width of 28’ (curb-to-curb) to discourage unnecessary traffic. Fix to six foot wide concrete sidewalks on each side of the street are planned to connect East Meadow Drive to the Frontage Road.

The railroad-tie planters along the parking lots for Crossroads and the Sonnenalp-Swiss House should be replaced with at-grade planting beds, similar to the planting beds along the south side of East Meadow Drive near the Vail Village Inn.

Landscaping is needed along Village Center Road, especially near the Frontage Road, so as to further inhibit vehicular traffic into the pedestrianized areas.

Landscaping, benches and a trash receptacle should be placed at the Crossroad’s bus stop as shown on the Master Plan graphic.

Expanding the planter on the south side of the intersection of Village Center Road and East Meadow Drive has been suggested. This would provide better definition to the roadway as well as increasing the landscaped area.

 

Staff believes the proposal meets the requirements of the Streetscape Master Plan. Previously staff identified that there was a lack of landscaping within the proposed public plaza to replace the "at-grade planting beds" identified by the Plan to replace the railroad-tie beds. The proposal has been revised to incorporate multiple landscaping beds. Staff believes that the proposal complies with the recommendations of the Vail Village Master Plan East Meadow Drive – Willow Bridge Road to Vail Valley Drive sub-area. Staff would recommend that the applicant work to implement those portions of the Streetscape master which address the intersection of Village Center Drive and East Meadow Drive by working with the property owner of Village Center.

 

Vail Village Urban Design Guide Plan and Design Considerations

 

Portions of the Crossroads development site fall within the prevue of the Vail Village Urban Design Guide Plan and Design Considerations

 

1. URBAN DESIGN CONSIDERATIONS

 

These considerations relate to general, large-scale land use planning issues, as well as form considerations which affect more than one property or even whole areas. These considerations are primarily the purview of the Planning and Environmental Commission.

 

A. PEDESTRIANIZATION

A major objective for Vail Village is to encourage pedestrian circulation through an interconnected network of safe, pleasant pedestrian ways. Many of the improvements recognized in the Urban Design Guide Plans, and accompanying Design Considerations, are to reinforce and expand the quality of pedestrian walkways throughout the Village.

 

Since vehicular traffic cannot be removed from certain streets (bus routes, delivery access), a totally care-free pedestrian system is not achievable throughout the entire Village. Therefore, several levels of pedestrianization have been identified.

 

Staff Response:

 

The Crossroads development site is bordered by East Meadow Drive on the south and Village Center Road to the east. Both East Meadow Drive and Village Center Road are designated as streets intended to accommodate pedestrian and vehicle traffic. East Meadow Drive is also a designated Town of Vail bus route.

 

The applicants are proposing to implement the recommendations of the Town of Vail Streetscape Master Plan. According to the Plan, the Crossroads development site is located in the East Meadow Drive – Willow Bridge Road to Vail Valley Drive Sub Area. The details of the goals in this sub area are identified earlier in this section. The primary goal of the East Meadow Drive – Willow Bridge Road to Vail Valley Drive Sub Area is to provide an effective and safe pedestrian system, while accommodating vehicle and bicycle traffic.

 

The applicant has proposed to install pavers and heat tubing in the right-of-way of Village Center Road and East Meadow Drive. The proposed heat tubing could eventually be connected to the Town’s boilers in the parking structure or elsewhere in the area. The applicant has proposed the narrowing of Village Center Road as the Streetscape Master Plan identified to discourage vehicular traffic and make the pedestrian more pleasant and safer. In addition, the applicant has proposed a large plaza with an ice skating ring located within it which would be coordinated in design with the intersection of East Meadow Drive and Willow Bridge Road. The proposed plaza would be heated as well and connected to boilers in the Crossroads development.

 

As identified earlier in this section the applicant has proposed a portion of the building in the southwest corner to be at a 4 foot setback with an actual height of 56 feet. Staff believes this feature will serve an important purpose in the pedestrian feel of the streetscape by providing a "pinch point" between the proposed plaza and the plaza created by Vail Village Inn and the Sonnenalp.

 

Staff believes that the proposed application does comply with this criterion.

 

B. VEHICLE PENETRATION

To maximize to the extent possible, all non-resident traffic should be routed along the Frontage Road to Vail Village/Lionshead Parking Structures.

 

In conjunction with pedestrianization objectives, major emphasis is focused upon reducing auto penetration into the center of the Village. Vail Road and Vail Valley Drive will continue to serve as major routes for service and resident access to the Village.

 

Road constrictions, traffic circles, signage, and other measures are indicated in the Guide Plans to visually and physically discourage all but essential vehicle penetration upon the Frontage Road. Alternative access points and private parking relocation, where feasible, should be considered to further reduce traffic conflicts in the Village.

 

Staff Response:

 

The Crossroads development has proposed a 5 berth loading and delivery facility with access from South Frontage Road. The applicant has stated that they are willing to participate in the overall loading and delivery scheme of the Village. All vehicles utilizing the Crossroads development will park in a subterranean structure which has access off of the narrowed Village Center Road. The proposal includes several items which will help make East Meadow Drive and Willow Bridge Road more pedestrian friendly such as paver colors and treatments and narrowed roads. Neither street is intended to be pedestrian-only. Staff believes that the proposed application complies with this criterion.

 

 

 

C. STREETSCAPE FRAMEWORK

To improve the quality of the walking experience and give continuity to the pedestrian ways, as a continuous system, two general types of improvements adjacent to the walkways are considered:

 

1. Open space and landscaping, berms, grass, flowers and tree planting as a soft, colorful framework linkage along pedestrian routes; and plazas and park greenspaces as open nodes and focal points along those routes.

 

2. Infill commercial storefronts, expansion of existing buildings, or new infill development to create new commercial activity generators to give streetlife and visual interest, as attractions at key locations along pedestrian routes.

 

It is not intended to enclose all Village streets with buildings as in the core areas. Nor is it desirable to leave pedestrian streets in the open in somewhat undefined condition evident in many other areas of Vail. Rather, it is desired to have a variety of open and enclosed spaces, both built and landscaped, which create a strong framework for pedestrian walks, as well as visual interest and activity.

 

Staff Response:

 

The applicants are proposing to improve and enhance the streetscape framework along Village Center Road and East Meadow Drive. To this end, a plan has been proposed that incorporates narrowed streets, pavers with differing colors and patterns and a large plaza within the proposed development. Staff believes the proposed plaza could be very positive for the community. Since the January 18, 2005, Town Council meeting the proposal for the public plaza has been improved greatly. The incorporation of additional plating beds and other features within the plaza have been provided to address the items identified in the criterion above. The applicant as also proposed to install heated sidewalks along the perimeter of the site. Staff believes that the proposed application complies with this criterion.

 

D. STREET ENCLOSURE

While building facade heights should not be uniform from building to building, they should provide a "comfortable" enclosure for the street.

 

Pedestrian streets are outdoor rooms, whose walls are formed by the buildings. The shape and feel of these "rooms" are created by the variety of heights and massing (3-dimensional variations), which give much of the visual interest and pedestrian scale unique to Vail. Very general rules, about the perception of exterior spaces have been developed by designers, based on the characteristics of human vision. They suggest that:

 

"an external enclosure is most comfortable when its walls are approximately 1/2 as high as the width of the space enclosed; if the ratio falls to 1/4 or less, the space seems unenclosed; and if the height is greater than the width it comes to resemble a canyon".

 

In actual application, facades are seldom uniform in height on both sides of the street, nor is this desired. Thus, some latitude is appropriate in the application of this 1/2 to 1 ratio. Using the average facade height on both sides will generally still be a guide to the comfortableness of the enclosure being created.

 

In some instances, the "canyon" effect is acceptable and even desirable. For example, as a short connecting linkage between larger spaces, to give variety to the walking experience. For sun/shade reasons it is often advantageous to orient any longer segments in a north/south direction. Long canyon streets in an east/west direction should generally be discouraged.

 

When exceptions to the general height criteria occur, special consideration should be given to create a well-defined ground floor pedestrian emphasis to overcome the "canyon" effect.

 

Canopies, awnings, arcades and building extensions can all create a pedestrian focus and divert attention from the upper building heights and "canyon" effect.

 

Staff Response:

 

The configuration of the Crossroads development site and the desire to create a large plaza in the interior largely dictates the orientation of the building and the impacts that result regarding street enclosure. The two street facades of the building are articulated and varied, horizontally and vertically, along the lengths of the building. The applicant has chosen to utilize an 11foot 6 inch floor plate which has the net effect of this building being taller. Staff and the applicant have worked together to address the relationship of this proposal to neighboring properties. Compatibility with adjacent buildings has been accomplished by reducing the pitch of the roof, removing a floor in the building in several locations, changes to the northeast and northwest corners of the building, and the addition of roof features along the western façade.

 

Staff believes that the application complies with this criterion.

 

E. STREET EDGE

Buildings in the Village core should form a strong but irregular edge to the street.

 

Unlike many American towns, there are no standard setback requirements for buildings in Vail Village. Consistent with the desire for intimate pedestrian scale, placement of portions of a building at or near the property line is allowed and encouraged to give strong definition to the pedestrian streets.

 

This is not to imply continuous building frontage along the property line. A strong street edge is important for continuity, but perfectly aligned facades over too long a distance tends to be monotonous. With only a few exceptions in the Village, slightly irregular facade lines, building jogs, and landscaped areas, give the life to the street and visual interest for pedestrian travel.

 

Where buildings jog to create activity pockets, other elements can be used to continue the street edge: low planter walls, tree planting, raised sidewalks, texture changes in ground surface, arcades, raised decks.

 

Plazas, patios, and green areas are important focal points for gathering, resting, orienting and should be distributed throughout the Village with due consideration to spacing, sun access, opportunities for views and pedestrian activity.

 

Staff Response:

 

The Crossroads proposal, as stated previously, includes a large plaza which opens up the pedestrian area at the intersection of Willow Bridge Road and East Meadow Drive. It has been stated by the applicant that it is the intention to make the plaza available to the public and Town for events such as "Street Beat" concerts. Staff believes that the plaza is a great idea. However, staff would like to see a public easement recorded for the space and agreements on the Town’s rights to schedule events in the space. The proposed plaza would compliment the eventual construction of the public venue space associated with the construction of the Vail’s Front Door project. Staff believes the proposal substantially complies with this criterion. However, details of the public easement need to be clarified.

 

F. BUILDING HEIGHT

Vail Village is perceived as a mix of two and three story facades, although there are also four and five story buildings. The mix of building heights gives variety to the street, which is desirable. The height criteria are intended to encourage height in massing variety and to discourage uniform building heights along the street.

 

Staff Response:

 

The applicant is proposing to construct an eight story structure (six stories of residential on top of and set back from the base two stories of commercial). Staff believes that the building has been revised to better compliment neighboring properties as identified in previous portions of this memorandum. As stated earlier in the memorandum, the applicant is proposing to utilize an 11 foot 6 inch floor plates in place of the established 11 foot floor plate. If the Commission agrees with the applicant’s reasons for the need of an 11 foot 6 inch floor plate it will become the new standard and staff believes that the application will comply with this criterion.

 

G. VIEWS AND FOCAL POINTS

Vail’s mountain/valley setting is a fundamental part of its identity. Views of the mountains, ski slopes, creeks and other natural features are reminders to our visitors of the mountain environment and, by repeated visibility, are orientation reference points. Certain building features also provide important orientation references and visual focal points. The most significant view corridors in the Village have been adopted as part of Chapter 18.73 of the Vail Municipal Code. The view corridors adopted should not be considered exhausted. When evaluating a development proposal, priority should be given to an analysis of the impacted project on public views. Views that should be preserved originate from either major pedestrian areas or public spaces, and include views of the ski mountain, the Gore Range, the Clock Tower, the Rucksack Tower and other important man-made and natural elements that contribute to the sense of place associated with Vail. These views, which have been adopted by ordinance, were chosen due to their significance, not only from an aesthetic standpoint, but also as orientation reference points for pedestrians. Development in Vail Village shall not encroach into any adopted view corridor, unless approved under Chapter 18.73. Adopted corridors are listed in Chapter 18.73 of the Vail Municipal Code. Whether affecting adopted view corridors or not, the impact of proposed development on views from public ways and public spaces must be identified and considered where appropriate.

 

Staff Response:

 

The Crossroads development site is not located within any of the Town of Vail adopted view corridors. The projects location adjacent to the South Frontage Road lends the project to potentially affecting only the views of residential unit owners in Phase III of the Vail Village Inn towards the Gore Range; not an adopted view corridor. It is important to note, however, that many of the units in Phase III of the Vail Village Inn currently do not have views of the Gore Range except for potentially the top two floors. The primary views of both the Crossroads development site and Vail Village Inn Phase III is to the south towards Vail Mountain. Staff believes that the application complies with this criterion.

 

H. SERVICE AND DELIVERY

Any building expansion should preserve the functions of existing service alleys. The few service alleys that exist in the Village are extremely important to minimizing vehicle congestion on pedestrian ways. The use of, and vehicular access to, those alleys should not be eliminated except where functional alternatives are not provided.

 

In all new and remodeled construction, delivery which avoids or reduces impacts on pedestrian ways should be explored; and adopted whenever practical, for immediate or future use. Rear access, basement and below ground delivery corridors reduce congestion. Weather protection increases delivery efficiency substantially.

 

Below grade delivery corridors are found in a few buildings in Vail Village (Sitzmark/Gore Creek Plaza, Village Center, Vail Village Inn). Consideration should be given to extending these corridors, where feasible, and the creation of new ones. As buildings are constructed or remodeled, the opportunity may exist to develop segments of a future system.

 

Staff Response:

 

The applicant has designed a service and delivery system which will avoid and reduce the negative impacts on the pedestrian ways adjacent to the lodge. As stated previously the applicant has proposed an enclosed 5-bay loading and delivery system which has access off of the South Frontage Road. The proposed design allows for neighboring properties to utilize the facility and eliminates truck traffic on Village Center Road and on East Meadow Drive. The applicant shall be required to participate in the overall loading and delivery plan for Vail Village in a similar fashion as the Willow Bridge project and the Vail’s Front Door project. Staff believes that the application complies with this criterion.

 

I. SUN / SHADE

Due to Vail’s alpine climate, sun is an important comfort factor, especially in winter, fall and spring. Shade areas have ambient temperatures substantially below those of adjacent direct sunlight areas. On all but the warmest of summer days, shade can easily lower temperatures below comfortable levels and thereby, negatively impact use of those areas.

 

All new or expanded buildings should not substantially increase the spring and fall shadow line (March 21 - September 23) on adjacent properties or the public right-of-way.

 

In all building construction, shade shall be considered in massing and overall height consideration. Notwithstanding, sun/shade considerations are not intended to restrict building height allowances, but rather to influence the massing of buildings. Limited height exceptions may be granted to meet this criterion.

 

Staff Response:

 

The proposal does shade the South Frontage Road to a great extent and for short periods of the late morning it shades Vail Village Inn Phase III. In order to eliminate the shading of Vail Village Inn Phase III the project would have to be pulled much further back from the property line than even just the setback. Staff believes that the extent of the shading and the duration of shade on Vail Village Inn Phase III is minimal and acceptable. A copy of the sun/shade study has been attached for reference (Attachment C). Staff believes that the application complies with this criterion.

As previously discussed in this section of the memorandum, staff believes that the application complies with all the goals and objectives of the Vail Comprehensive plan.

 

Identification and mitigation of natural and/or geologic hazards that affect the property on which the special development district is proposed.

 

According to the Official Town of Vail Geologic Hazard Maps, the Crossroads development site is not located in any geologically sensitive areas. Staff believes that the application complies with this criterion.

 

Site plan, building design and location and open space provisions designed to produce a functional development responsive and sensitive to natural features, vegetation and overall aesthetic quality of the community.

 

The proposed site plan shows the building encroaching into the setbacks surrounding the property. The applicant states that the primary reason for this is the proposed creation of a large plaza which will have an ice skating rink during the winter and a pop-jet water feature in the summer. Staff previously expressed concerns regarding the "forward looking expression of European alpine heritage and more contemporary forms" (taken from the applicant’s proposal document) and how it would compliment the character of the Village. Staff and the applicant have worked together on the architecture of the building and agree that the overall architecture of the building is compatible and consistent with existing buildings in the area, the potential future redevelopment of structures in the area, and the Town’s design guidelines. Staff and the applicant agree that any remaining details of the architecture will be worked out with the Design Review Board in the review of the project upon approval of the Town Council.

 

As discussed previously the applicant has proposed an ice skating rink/pop-jet water feature within the proposed plaza. Staff agrees that there is public benefit to this proposed use. However, staff believes that in order for the plaza to achieve the maximum value as a public benefit and to offset the deviations proposed staff believes that a pedestrian access easement and usage agreement should be entered into with the developer. The easement and agreements would establish rights for the Town to coordinate potential events on the public plaza. In the absence of such an agreement, the public plaza does not have value as a public benefit. Staff recommends that the Commission requires a condition that would establish an agreement between the Town and Developer regarding the proposed public plaza.

 

Staff believes the proposal complies with this criterion.

 

A circulation system designed for both vehicles and pedestrians addressing on and off-site traffic circulation.

 

The Town of Vail Public Works Department has reviewed the proposed plans for circulation to ensure that it is designed well for both vehicles and pedestrians on and off the site. Following the review of the plans, the Public Works Department forwarded their written final comments in a memorandum, dated April 11, 2005. Many of the final comments are time sensitive actions that can only be accomplished at a later date or are only necessary to address if the applicants receive approval of this request. To require full compliance at this time would thus be inappropriate. A copy of the memorandum with the final written comments from the Public Works Department has been attached for reference (Attachment G).

 

The traffic report submitted by the applicant depicts overall intersection levels for existing and future service being maintained at a Level Of Service (LOS) A. However, two individual turn movements within the intersection have decreased their level of service. More specifically the north bound left off of Village Center Road onto the South Frontage Road has decreased from a LOS of C to a D and the west bound left from South Frontage Road onto Village Center Road has decreased for a LOS of A to B. The overall impact on Village Center Road’s north bound left turn lane is a queue increase of 25 feet in length to 50 feet in length. Staff believes that it will be imperative to assess the applicant a fee of $5,000 per additional peak PM trip generated by this project should it be granted approval. The traffic report identifies that there is a net increase of 69 PM Peak Hour trips for the Crossroads project. At $5,000 per net trip this results in an impact fee of $345,000. This impact fee can be offset by any proposed improvements to the South Frontage Road and intersection of Village Center Road including, curb and gutter, drainage improvements, paving improvements, removal of right turn lane, new median improvements, sidewalk improvements, etc.

 

To address the concerns of circulation of pedestrians and vehicles and the conflicts that are present between the two, the applicant has proposed improvements to Village Center Road and East Meadow Drive which make the area feel more pedestrian oriented and restricts errant vehicular traffic from finding its way into the pedestrian area by narrowing the roads. The proposal will also improve loading and delivery traffic in the area. The proposal also includes a fully enclosed 5 berth loading and delivery facility with access off of the Frontage Road. Currently, there is a fairly high volume of loading and delivery vehicles on Village Center Road and East Meadow Drive. The applicant has expressed that they are willing to be a member of the overall loading and delivery system which currently has participation from the eventual Vail’s Front Door facility and the One Willow Bridge project facility. Staff recommends that through a developer improvement agreement that the 5 berth loading and delivery facility is made available for inclusion in the overall Town of Vail loading and delivery system which may include the establishment of an easement.

 

Functional and aesthetic landscaping and open space in order to optimize and preserve natural features, recreation, views and functions.

 

The applicant has proposed a large plaza along East Meadow Drive which contains an ice skating rink in the winter and a pop-jet water feature in the warmer months. The proposed plaza has been reworked to include greater landscaping than in previous submittals. The planter bed locations and the landscaping to be planted in each will be carefully selected in order for the retail to be as visible as possible. As has been stated previously the applicant’s proposal does not comply with the minimum requirement of landscaped area as defined by the Code. While the overall total landscaped area, 42,255 square feet of hardscape and softscape is well over the minimum required, 23,025 square feet, it is the ratio of hardscape to softscape which does not meet the Code requirements. By Code 80% of the required landscape area (18,420 s.f.) is to be softscape (green vegetation) and a maximum of 20% (4,605 s.f.) can be hardscape (pavers, plazas, patios, etc.). The proposal includes a ratio of the provided landscaped area, 42,255 square feet, which is 64.7% hardscape (mainly the proposed plaza) to 35.3% softscape. This ratio leaves the proposal 3,522 square feet under the minimum requirement for softscape on the site. Staff believes that the inclusion of the proposed public plaza is a benefit which warrants the minimum deviation requested in the Code required ration for landscaped areas.

 

Since the Commission last saw the applicant’s proposal focus has been placed upon the landscaping plan and incorporating the appropriate scale of landscaping upon the plan. The current landscaping plan includes a variety of plants. In order to mitigate the proposed height of the structure the plan includes numerous evergreen trees ranging from heights of 20 feet to 40 feet.

 

Staff believes that the changes are an improvement which now makes this proposal comply with this criterion.

 

 

 

 

Phasing plan or subdivision plan that will maintain a workable, functional and efficient relationship throughout the development of the special development district.

 

The applicant is proposing to construct the project in one phase and a subdivision of the property will be necessary to facilitate the development of the Crossroads project.

 

B. Consideration of Factors Regarding Text Amendments

 

Before acting on an application for an amendment to the regulations prescribed in this title, the Planning and Environmental Commission and Town Council shall consider the following factors with respect to the requested text amendments:

 

1. The extent to which the text amendments further the general and specific purposes of the zoning regulations; and

 

The proposal to add "bowling alley" as a definition within Section 12-2, Definitions, Vail Town Code, and as a conditional use within the Commercial Service Center zone district furthers the general and specific purposes of the zoning regulations by providing a restricted opportunity to introduce a land use which, when appropriate, makes Vail a more vibrant location for visitors and guests.

 

The applicant is proposing the following language be included as the definition of bowling alley:

 

BOWLING ALLEY: A recreation and entertainment facility where the sport of bowling takes place. A bowling alley may also includes accessory entertainment facilities and uses such as eating and drinking facilities, retail shops, night clubs, arcade facilities, billiards, ping pong, darts, meeting rooms, and similar uses.

 

2. The extent to which the text amendment would better implement and better achieve the applicable elements of the adopted goals, objectives, and policies outlined in the Vail comprehensive plan and is compatible with the development objectives of the town; and

 

Staff believes that the proposed text amendments to Section 12-2, Definitions, and Section 12-7E-4, Conditional Uses, Vail Town Code, will further the goals and objectives outlined in the Vail Comprehensive Plan which are found in Section V of this memorandum.

 

3. The extent to which the text amendment demonstrates how conditions have substantially changed since the adoption of the subject regulation and how the existing regulation is no longer appropriate or is inapplicable; and

 

The proposed amendments demonstrate that the code has many uses which are not defined nor identified as being permitted or conditional uses. Staff believes that a bowling alley is a use which is becoming more popular and one in which makes Vail a more year-round, active place for locals and tourists.

 

4. The extent to which the text amendment provides a harmonious, convenient, workable relationship among land use regulations consistent with municipal development objectives; and

 

The proposed text amendments to the Code allow the proposed development to include a land use which could bring year round activity to the Village which will be a draw for both locals and visitors. The addition of "bowling alley" as a conditional use will allow applicants to propose the use as part of a coordinated mixed-use development which will relate more harmoniously with adjacent properties and land uses. Staff believes that the proposed text amendments give the Planning and Environmental Commission the control necessary to regulate a use which could potentially be negative if not properly regulated.

 

5. Such other factors and criteria the commission and/or council deem applicable to the proposed text amendment.

 

Before recommending and/or granting an approval of an application for a text amendment, the Planning and Environmental Commission and the Town Council shall make the following findings with respect to the requested amendment:

 

(1) That the amendments are consistent with the applicable elements of the adopted goals, objectives and policies outlined in the Vail comprehensive plan and is compatible with the development objectives of the town; and

(2) That the amendments further the general and specific purposes of the zoning regulations; and

(3) That the amendments promote the health, safety, morals, and general welfare of the town and promote the coordinated and harmonious development of the town in a manner that conserves and enhances its natural environment and its established character as a resort and residential community of the highest quality.

 

C. Consideration of Factors Regarding Conditional Use Permits:

 

1. Relationship and impact of the use on the development objectives of the Town.

 

Multi-family Dwelling Units:

The proposed project has six floors of condominiums comprising a total of 75 dwelling units. It is the number of levels which give this project its bulk and mass. Within Section 12-7E-1, Purpose, Vail Town Code, states:

 

The Commercial Service Center District is intended to provide sites for general shopping and commercial facilities serving the Town, together with limited multiple-family dwelling and lodge uses as may be appropriate without interfering with the basic commercial functions of the District. The Commercial Service Center District is intended to ensure adequate light, air, open space, and other amenities appropriate to permitted types of buildings and uses, and to maintain a convenient shopping center environment for permitted commercial uses.

 

The purpose statement anticipates that multiple-family uses could be located on properties zoned Commercial Service Center zone district as long as they do not interfere with the primary commercial functions of the district. Staff believes the number of proposed dwelling units does not interfere with the commercial nature of the zone district. There is a requirement in the Commercial Service Zone District limiting GRFA to 50% of the total floor area of a development, Section 12-7E-9, Density Control, Vail Town Code. The GRFA requested in addition to the limit identified previously is a deviation which staff believes the public benefits within the proposal off-set. Staff would also point out that the land use plan for this site as contained in the Vail Village Master Plan does identify this site as being substantially high density multiple-family. The applicant has provided a plan which they believe encourages owners of condominiums to be involved in the rental pool. According to the applicant, the key to achieving the participation in a rental pool program is to emulate the management of a fine, high quality, luxury hotel. The management program is a hospitality program above all else. On-site management and management offices are a necessity. Top level services need to be provided to renting guests and owners alike. Great service and a first class property will attract the kind of clientele that not only can afford a fine resort but will respect the property of others. Owners become proud of being part of the resort and have confidence that their asset is being well cared for while producing a painless, welcome income to offset their ownership expenses (Attachment F).

 

The level of service to be offered by Crossroads includes daily or twice daily maid service, 24-hour desk and concierge, bell and valet staff, local transportation service, pre-arrival activity, in-house amenities such as workout rooms, massage rooms, a lap pool, meeting rooms, and a world class lobby, ski and grocery service and premium rental equipment. An in-house maintenance staff not only quickly provides for guests needs but corrects problems in units before they become a major problem and expense to the renting owner. Owners become confident that their arrival will be hassle free and as enjoyable as a vacationing guest in spite of a renting guest occupying their unit the night before.

 

The final piece to encourage owners to rent is creating a financial structure that strongly rewards owners that rent. The cost sharing structure between the Homeowners’ Association and the Rental Program needs to be an integrated program that equitably balances all of the services being offered to owners and renters alike. Properly and efficiently designed, owners will be financially rewarded for renting instead of carrying the service costs for all owners, as is the case in many condominium hospitality programs.

 

Staff and the applicant have also provided a retail analysis of both Vail Village and Lionshead which we believe demonstrates that the amount of commercial space proposed to be constructed on the site does meet the purpose statement of the CSC zone district. The new Crossroads development would be approximately 19.6% (Currently 13.8%) of the total commercial square footage in the Vail Village. The report is attached for reference (Attachment H).

 

Private Parking Club:

Staff believes that the proposal to establish a private parking club will address several of the goals and objectives established in the Vail Village Master Plan. Those goals are Goal #5 and Objective 5.1 as identified in Section V of this memorandum. Staff believes the parking club could have a very positive effect on the parking issues the Town faces through out the year. The proposal no longer identifies the parking club as a public benefit but as a public amenity which has indirect benefit to the community.

 

Meeting Rooms, Movie Theaters, Major Arcade, outdoor operation of an accessory use (ice skating rink),and Bowling Alley:

The Vail Comprehensive Plan identifies the need make the Village a more vibrant and economically viable location. Goal #2 of the Vail Village Master Plan, which is detailed in Section V of this memorandum, is positively addressed by these requested uses.

2. The effect of the use on light and air, distribution of population, transportation facilities, utilities, schools, parks and recreation facilities, and other public facilities needs.

 

Multi-family Dwelling Units:

A great majority of the bulk, mass, and height of the proposed structure is generated by the six floors of condominium units. Previously staff believed that there could be some negative impacts on the neighboring residential portion of Vail Village Inn Phase III in terms of light and air as the proposed building encroached into the western setback. Since the January 18, 2005, Town Council meeting the proposal has been reduced in height and the building has been pulled out of the western property line setback with the exception of the enclosed loading and delivery bay. This change has greatly reduced the impact to the Vail Village Inn Phase III. As with any development on this site, there will be shade and shadow on the adjacent properties. However, the magnitude of shade and shadow proposed is really no different on the adjacent property than if the building was constructed even a story or two shorter.

 

Private Parking Club:

Staff believes that the proposal to establish a private parking club will address several of the goals established in the Vail Village Master Plan. Those goals are Goal #5 and Objective 5.1 as identified in Section V of this memorandum. The private parking club, which is subterranean, will not have any negative impacts on the above listed criteria.

 

Meeting Rooms, Movie Theaters, Major Arcade, outdoor operation of an accessory use (ice skating rink), and Bowling Alley:

The proposed uses will add to the recreation choices of locals and guests alike. The uses will also provide year entertainment choices. All of the uses proposed will be located in the subterranean portions of the structure except for the ice skating rink.

 

The surface ice skating rink and the associated plaza is identified by the applicant as one reason why the building encroaches into the setbacks on a majority of the site. Reducing the size of the ice skating rink would potentially allow the building to pull in from the property lines which could improve the impacts on light and air of the current structure.

 

3. Effect upon traffic with particular reference to congestion, automotive and pedestrian safety and convenience, traffic flow and control, access, maneuverability, and removal of snow from the street and parking areas.

 

Multi-family Dwelling Units:

The proposed 75 dwelling units will generate increased vehicular traffic. The payment of the traffic impact fee and/or the construction of roadway traffic improvements to the South Frontage Road and Village Center Road will off-set any negative impacts.

 

Private Parking Club:

The proposed 92 space parking club will generate additional vehicular traffic in the area. The payment of the traffic impact fee and/or the construction of roadway traffic improvements to the South Frontage Road and Village Center Road will off-set any negative impacts.

 

 

Meeting Rooms, Movie Theaters, Major Arcade, outdoor operation of an accessory use (ice skating rink), and Bowling Alley:

These proposed uses will generate increased vehicular traffic. The payment of the traffic impact fee and/or the construction of roadway traffic improvements to the South Frontage Road and Village Center Road will mitigate any negative impacts.

 

4. Effect upon the character of the area in which the proposed use is to be located, including the scale and bulk of the proposed use in relation to surrounding uses.

 

Multi-family Dwelling Units:

The Purpose statement of the Commercial Service Center zone district identifies multiple-family dwelling units as a conditional use because the primary function of the district is commercial. It is primarily the impact of six floors of residential which give this project its bulk, mass, and height. While the applicant is proposing a building which exceeds the height limits in the Vail Village Master Plan this is caused by the 11 foot 6 inch floor plates proposed and the taller floor plate in the commercial floors to accommodate stadium seated theaters and a bowling alley. If the Commission agrees that the 11 foot 6 inch floor plate is acceptable staff believes the proposal complies with this criterion.

 

Private Parking Club:

The proposed parking club is located within a completely subterranean structure. The subterranean nature of the parking club has no negative impacts on neighboring uses.

 

Meeting Rooms, Movie Theaters, Major Arcade, outdoor operation of an accessory use (ice skating rink), and Bowling Alley:

These proposed uses are located in the subterranean, except for the ice skating rink, portions of the structure and have little impact on the visible portions of the upper portions of the structure.

 

The surface ice skating rink and the associated plaza is identified by the applicant as one reason why the building encroaches into the setbacks on a majority of the site. Staff and the applicant have performed an analysis which depicts that the increased height and encroachments into setbacks are indeed created by the public plaza containing the ice rink as the amount of development potentially lost by establishing the public plaza is on the same scale as the height deviations and setback encroachments proposed within the project.

 

B. The Planning and Environmental Commission shall make the following findings before granting a conditional use permit:

 

That the proposed location of the use is in accordance with the purposes of the conditional use permit section of the zoning code and the purposes of the Commercial Service Center Zone District.

 

That the proposed location of the use and the conditions under which it will be operated or maintained will not be detrimental to the public health, safety, or welfare or materially injurious to properties or improvements in the vicinity.

 

That the proposed use will comply with each of the applicable provisions of the conditional use permit section of the zoning code.

IX. STAFF RECOMMENDATION

 

The Community Development Department recommends that the Planning and Environmental Commission forwards a recommendation of approval with conditions to the Vail Town Council of the development application to establish Special Development District No. 39, Crossroads, located at 141 and 143 Meadow Drive/Lot P, Block 5D, Vail Village Filing 1. Staff’s recommendation is based upon a review of the criteria and findings as outlined in this memorandum and from the evidence and testimony presented.

 

Should the Planning and Environmental Commission choose to forward a recommendation of approval with conditions of the applicants’ request, staff recommends that the following findings be made as part of the motion:

 

Special Development District No. 39, Crossroads

 

"That the proposal to establish Special Development District No. 39, Crossroads, complies with the nine design criteria outlined in Section 12-9A-8 of the Vail Town Code. Furthermore, the applicant has demonstrated to the satisfaction of the Commission, based upon the testimony and evidence presented during the public hearing, that any adverse effects of the requested deviations from the development standards of the underlying zoning are outweighed by the public benefits provided. Lastly, the Commission finds that the request is consistent with the development goals and objectives of the Town.

 

With regards to proposed building setbacks, that:

 

a. Proposed building setbacks provide necessary separation between buildings and riparian areas, geologically sensitive areas and other environmentally sensitive areas.

b. Proposed building setbacks comply with applicable elements of the Vail Village Urban Design Guide Plan and Design Considerations.

c. Proposed building setbacks will provide adequate availability of light, air and open space.

d. Proposed building setbacks will provide a compatible relationship with buildings and uses on adjacent properties.

e. Proposed building setbacks will result in creative design solutions or other public benefits that could not otherwise be achieved by conformance with prescribed setback standards.

 

With regards to proposed building height, that:

 

a. Proposed building heights comply with applicable elements of the Vail Village Master Plan.

b. Proposed building height will adequately preserve views of the Gore Range from Vail Valley Drive.

c. Proposed building height will provide a compatible relationship with buildings and uses on adjacent properties.

d. Proposed building height will result in creative design solutions or other public benefits that could not otherwise be achieved by conformance with prescribed setback standards.

e. Proposed building height of 99.9 feet, while setting precedence, was mitigated by the proposed public benefits, of which the provision of a public plaza on the site per the Town’s Master Plans was the most offsetting element.

 

That the proposed gross residential floor area of 182% of lot area, additional twenty-eight dwelling units over allowable (at 28.4 units per acre total), site coverage of 107,772 square feet (93.6%) and landscape area of 42,255 sq. ft. (deviation from percent hardscape) in the Commercial Service Center zone district is in conformance with applicable elements of the Vail Comprehensive Master Plan.

 

That the development is in compliance with the purposes of the Commercial Service Center zone district, that the proposal is consistent with applicable elements of the Vail Village Master Plan, the Vail Land Use Plan, and the Vail Streetscape Master Plan, and that the proposal does not otherwise have a significant negative effect on the character of the neighborhood, and that the proposal substantially complies with other applicable elements of the Vail Comprehensive Plan."

 

Should the Planning and Environmental Commission choose to approve the applicant’s requests, staff recommends that the following conditions:

 

The Developer shall address the following conditions of approval prior to appearing before the Vail Town Council for second reading of an adopting ordinance for the establishment of Special Development District No. 39, Crossroads:

 

The Developer shall prepare a written agreement, for Town Council review and approval, outlining the responsibilities and requirements of the required offsite improvements, as indicated on the proposed Approved Development Plan. This agreement shall include, but not be limited to, all streetscape improvements along Village Center Road and East Meadow Drive, public access to the plaza for pedestrians and Town sponsored events, which may include the establishment of an easement on the plaza and language in the covenants and declarations for owners of property in the project regarding the use of the plaza for special events, inclusion of the loading and delivery facility in the overall loading and delivery system, payment of traffic impact fees and credits given to offset fee, and details for funding public art.

That the approval of the conditional use permits and text amendments are not valid unless an ordinance approving the associated special development district amendment request is approved on second reading.

 

The Developer shall submit a fire and life safety plan for review and approval by the Town of Vail Fire Department.

 

The Developer shall submit a revised site and landscape plan indicating a larger landscape island located at the porte cochere entry to the proposed building for review and approval by the Design Review Board.

 

The Developer shall submit a final exterior building materials list, typical wall section, architectural specifications, and a complete color rendering for review and approval of the Design Review Board, prior to submittal of an application for a building permit.

 

The Developer shall submit a rooftop mechanical equipment plan for review and approval by the Design Review Board prior to the issuance of a building permit. All rooftop mechanical equipment shall be incorporated into the overall design of the lodge and enclosed and visually screened from public view.

 

The Developer shall submit a comprehensive sign program for review and approval by the Design Review Board.

 

The Developer shall address the following conditions of approval prior to submitting a building permit application (a grading permit/excavation permit shall constitute a building permit);

 

The Developer shall receive all the required permits from the Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) prior to submitting for a building permit. Failure to receive the appropriate permits to access the South Frontage Road per the Approved Development Plan will require the project to return through the special development district review process.

 

The Developer shall addresses the written final comments of the Town of Vail Public Works Department outlined in the memorandum from the Town of Vail Public Works Department, dated April 22, 2005, prior to submitting an application to the Town of Vail Community Department for the issuance of a building permit for this project.

 

The Developer shall submit a written letter agreeing to install a public safety radio communications system within the subterranean parking structure which meets the specifications of the Town of Vail Communications Center. The specifications and details of this system shall be submitted to staff for review and approval with the application for a building permit.

 

The Developer shall address the following conditions of approval prior to requesting a temporary certificate of occupancy or a final certificate of occupancy;

 

The Developer shall be assessed a traffic impact fee of $5,000 per net trip increase in p.m. traffic, or $345,000. The construction of the South Frontage Road improvements by the Developer, as indicated on the Crossroads Public Improvements Plan, shall satisfy this requirement.

 

The Developer shall post a bond to provide financial security for 125% of the total cost of the required off-site public improvements. The bond shall be in place with the Town prior to the issuance of a temporary certificate of occupancy. This includes but is not limited to the proposed streetscape improvements.

 

The Developer shall commence initial construction of the Crossroads improvements within three years from the time of its final approval at second reading of the ordinance establishing Special Development District No. 39, and continue diligently toward the completion of the project. If the developer does not begin and diligently work toward the completion of the special development district or any stage of the special development district within the time limits imposed, the approval of said special development district shall be void. The Planning and Environmental Commission and Town Council shall review the special development district upon submittal of an application to reestablish the special development district following the procedures outlined in Section 12-9A-4, Vail Town Code.

 

The Developer shall provide deed-restricted housing that complies with the Town of Vail Employee Housing requirements (Chapter 12-13) for a minimum of five (5) beds generated by the redevelopment of Crossroads, and that said deed-restricted employee housing shall be made available for occupancy, and that the deed restrictions shall be recorded with the Eagle County Clerk & Recorder, prior to issuance of a Temporary Certificate of Occupancy for the Crossroads project. The required Type II or III deed-restricted employee housing units will be regulated by the Town of Vail Employee Housing requirements (Chapter 12-13). The applicant shall purchase and deed restrict the employee housing beds prior to requesting a temporary certificate of occupancy. The units purchased must be approved as acceptable by Town staff and deed restricted as Type II or III units depending on the zone district in which they are located and by the appropriate review process. The developer shall have the right to participate in any pay-in-lieu program, if one is established by the Town, if he/she so chooses. Participation in a pay-in-lieu program shall occur prior to requesting a temporary certificate of occupancy.

 

The approval of SDD No. 39 shall restrict the uses upon the plaza level tenant spaces to retail uses solely and shall not be utilized for professional offices, business offices, and studios. The second floor retail space may be utilized for any allowable or conditional use as listed in the Commercial Service Center Zone District. No space noted as retail space on the Approved Development Plan shall be converted to a residential dwelling unit. Temporary real estate sales offices may be allowed on the plaza level of retail during the first two years following the issuance of a certificate of occupancy in order to allow effective sales of dwelling units on-site.

 

Text Amendments:

 

The Community Development Department recommends that the Planning and Environmental Commission forwards a recommendation of approval of the text amendments to Town Council based upon the criteria in Section VIII of this memorandum and the findings below.

 

Should the Planning and Environmental Commission choose to approve the applicant’s request, staff recommends that the following findings be made as part of a motion:

 

1. That the amendments are consistent with the applicable elements of the adopted goals, objectives and policies outlined in the Vail comprehensive plan and is compatible with the development objectives of the town; and

2. That the amendments further the general and specific purposes of the zoning regulations; and

3. That the amendments promote the health, safety, morals, and general welfare of the town and promote the coordinated and harmonious development of the town in a manner that conserves and enhances its natural environment and its established character as a resort and residential community of the highest quality.

 

Conditional Use Permits

 

The Community Development Department recommends that the Planning and Environmental Commission approves the applicant’s requests for a conditional use permit to allow for the construction of an outdoor operation of the accessory uses as set forth in Section 12-7E-5 (ice skating rink); a major arcade to include indoor entertainment; a theater, meeting rooms, and convention facilities; multiple-family dwellings and lodges; and a private club (92 parking spaces) to allow for the establishment of a for sale parking club, pursuant to Section 12-7E-4, Vail Town Code, located at 141 and 143 Meadow Drive/Lot P, Block 5D, Vail Village Filing 1. Staff’s recommendation of approval is based upon the review of the criteria described in Section VIII of this memo and the evidence and testimony presented.

 

Should the Planning and Environmental Commission choose to approve the applicant’s request, staff recommends that the following findings be made as part of a motion:

 

That the proposed locations of the use is in accordance with the purposes of the conditional use permit section of the zoning code and the purposes of the district in which the site is located.

 

That the proposed locations of the use and the conditions under which it would be operated or maintained would not be detrimental to the public health, safety, or welfare or materially injurious to properties or improvements in the vicinity.

 

That the proposed use would comply with each of the applicable provisions of the conditional use permit section of the zoning code.

 

X. ATTACHMENTS

 

Vicinity Map

Reduce plans of the proposal dated March 28, 2005

Vail Village Master Plan: Conceptual Building Height Plan

Vail Village Master Plan: Land Use Plan

Applicant’s Employee Housing Unit Proposal

Applicant’s Rental Program Proposal

Public Works memo dated April 22, 2005

Retail Analysis Dated April 12, 2005

Public Notification

Letters from Public