Lionshead proposals hit Vail town offices
Both plans provide more parking, hotel rooms, shop space

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Open/Hillwood 's plan is to redevelop the Lionshead gargae with St. Regis and “W” hotels.
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Scott Miller
September 29, 2006

VAIL — The plans are beefy, colorful and thick. But will either one fly?

Two developers competing to redevelop the Lionshead parking gargae turned in their plans to Vail town officials Friday afternoon. Now comes the job of trying to decide which one to pick, if any.

The dueling developers in this case are the Open/Hillwood Partnership of Dallas, Texas, and East West Partners of Avon.

Both plans would replace the current parking structure and its 1,150 parking places with shops, condos, and something Vail officials say they can’t get enough of: hotel rooms. Both plans also include some sort of performing arts or events center.

The Open/Hillwood plan names hotels, the St. Regis and “W” chains, both owned by the same company. The East West plan doesn’t name a hotel yet, but Vail Community Development Department Director Russell Forrest said he expects the Avon-based company to announce a deal with a hotel group in the next week or so.


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East West Partners of Avon’s package included this artist’s rendition of what could replace the Lionshead parking structure. The view is from Vail Mountain.
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Both plans seem to have plenty of parking, although the Open/Hill proposal seems to have more.

“That’s where the devil is in the details,” Forrest said. “How they’re going to allocate the parking.”

So how will the town pick a winner?

“Our next step is to look at the technical aspects,” Forrest said. “That includes zoning, and whether the numbers add up. We’re also going to look at financial statements from both companies.”

Given the size of the proposals given to the town Friday, that could take a few weeks.
Taking an in-depth look at the plans will include reviews by both the Vail Town Council and the public.

After those meetings, Forrest said both development companies will be invited to another series of public meetings. Those will probably begin in November.

Dueling plans
• Open/Hillwood Partnership, Dallas, Texas
• East West Partners, Avon

Plans for: Redeveloping the Lionshead parking structure

The rough outline: Hotel rooms and condos, shop space, a performing arts or conference center, a bus center, frontage road improvements and more parking.

Public meetings with the developers: Probably in November.

Parcel size: 6.3 acres

To see the plans: go to, probably starting Monday

Staff Writer Scott N. Miller can be reached at 748-2930, or

Vail Daily, Vail Colorado