Morning air sketch plan

The map shows the types of development that will occur if the Morning Air PUD is approved. The sketch plan, one of three plan approvals required, was approved by the county commissioners May 25. Blue area is commercial. Green is open space. Yellow is one residential lot. Dark pink is multi-family buildings and light pink is single family lots.

The sketch plan phase of the Morning Air Planned Unit Development, owned by Salzamar Properties, LLC, was approved by the county commissioners May 25.

No conditions were placed on the approval, which is the first of three approvals needed for any new subdivision or PUD. More details will be developed during the preliminary plan. The final plat is the third approval phase.

The 33-acre proposed development is located on the west end of Bailey adjacent to the RiverBend Restaurant and across U.S. Highway 285 from the Park County office building.

John and Sheri Bezzant own Salzamar Properties and bought the 33-acre property in 2017. They currently live in Burland, but plan to move to the current home on the proposed PUD property.

The sketch plan map (on Page 2) has four commercial lots on 2.9 acres next to the North Fork of the South Platte River, plus two commercial, non-buildable tracts.

Due to an easement owned by Denver Water and a Zone A Special Flood Hazard Area designation, the developable area of three commercial lots will be 0.20 acre, 0.4 acre and 0.3 acre.

The fourth has little developable land. It is adjacent to Bailey Water and Sanitation District and the owner said it would be sold to the district to expand its water sales operations.

Bezzant said the two commercial tracts will be offered to adjacent property owners.

Residential development includes a six-acre lot with an existing home. Nine single family lots will cover 13.6 acres. Four of the lots are a little less than or a little more than 1 acre. Two are about 1.5 acres; two are about 2 acres and one is a little less than 3 acres.

One multi-family lot is 2.8 acres. The plan states 12-18 townhomes will be built on the lot.

Bezzant said each lot will have a building envelope.

A six-acre, private open space for residents only will be located in the northwestern portion of the development.

The driveway for the six-acre residential lot is next to the RiverBend Restaurant. The other residential lots will be accessed from County Road 64.

The Advisory Board on the Environment stated the application didn’t have enough information to evaluate possible environmental issues, but were concerned about commercial lots in a flood hazard area and noted contradictory information regarding ingress/egress. The statement said Mark Lamb, regional wildlife manager, would write a letter to the developer regarding wildlife concerns.

A wildlife habitat map was not included with the staff report. Commissioner Ray Douglas asked if a wildlife habitat 1041 was needed. Staff said a permit was not needed.

Public works written comments said the access from CR 64 and the subdivision road do not meet three road standards and could not be approved as represented on the sketch plan map.

 Standard 4.3.2c states maximum road grade is eight percent and no more than four percent for 50 feet at intersections and cul-de-sacs. It stated the access point from “CR 64 is very steep and deep, dropping into a narrow drainage for Roark Creek with a steep climb up the other side. It would require a bridge or a huge amount of fill.”

The second standard in Table 3.1 requires road right of way of 60 feet and a road width of 24 feet.

The third standard requires a second ingress/egress because the proposed road was 1,500 feet long. LUR 7-202 C requires a second ingress/egress for a cul-de-sac longer than 1,000 feet.

Salzamar said he had talked to public works after the planning commission hearing and changed the road ROW to 60 feet and the length to the cul-de-sac to 1,000 feet. This leaves four lots having long, adjacent, 20-feet-wide driveways to access the moved cul-de-sac.

The written application asked the commissioners to waive the requirement for a second access point.

Platte Canyon Fire Protection District stated ingress/egress should be wide and high enough (15 feet by 15 feet) to accommodate their largest vehicles and allow one to turn around, which requires 30 feet.

The steepness of the land, especially at the access point with CR 64, was mentioned by Commissioner Amy Mitchell, who had visited the site.

The application and the staff report did not contain a steep slope map.

All three commissioners said it was a good plan that meets a need for multi-family development. School teachers and sheriff’s deputies were mentioned as some who need housing.

New ordinances

First readings were held for two ordinances, one for open fires and one for camping on private property.

Public comment will be taken until their adoption. The date has not been set yet. Both ordinances will be published in The Flume in their entirety.

The ordinance regulating open fires, requiring a permit for such and authorizing the sheriff to declare burn bans, will replace the 2019 fire ordinance. It will govern all open fires throughout the county, regardless of private or public property. All open fires require a burn permit from the local fire district.

The main difference between the two ordinances is the proposed ordinance has different restrictions for stage one and stage two fire bans. The 2019 ordinance did not differentiate stages of a fire ban. Restrictions were for any fire ban.

In the proposed ordinances, during a stage one fire ban, campfires are allowed if they meet the following conditions: are in outdoor masonry or metal fireplaces, a grill, smoker, or in an approved portable exterior fireplace. During a stage two fire ban, no campfires are allowed, including charcoal.

NorthWest Fire Protection District Chief Kristy Olme said the fire districts were not consulted, but met before the meeting to discuss the proposed ordinance. She offered several revisions to the open fire ordinance based on the districts’ discussion.

Commissioner Richard Elsner said residents wanted to be able to shoot on their property during a fire ban. Currently, that is prohibited. Sheriff Tom McGraw and the representative from the Lake George Fire Protection District supported leaving it in the ordinance, noting that last year two fires in the Bailey area were started by recreational shooting and that many times near Lake George, shooting is part of a party.  

McGraw suggested allowing shooting during a fire ban only on county-approved ranges. Mitchell wanted to allow lead bullets and metal targets.

The camping regulations for residential and mining zoned properties have been in effect since 2016. Those regulations allow camping on one’s own vacant property with or without a permit based on length of stay up to a maximum of 30 days, with another 30 days for renewal and infrastructure, such as a septic system, present on the property.

One camping unit was allowed and had to be removed from the property when not being used.

The proposed 2021 ordinance will increase the time frame for camping from May 1 to Oct. 31 with another 14 days during the winter.

The number of units allowed per lot varies from one to four, depending on lot size.

Mitchell said she would support allowing more camping units on a property if campers were visiting the property owner.

Elsner said he would support that if it was limited to a weekend, not for as long as a week.

Both ordinances can be found at under the agenda for May 25.

LWTF grants approved

Five projects were approved for funding by the Land and Water Trust Fund. Revenue is from the county’s one percent sales tax. Two were not recommended for funding by the advisory board.

Harris Park Metro District application for $100,000 was for a children’s playground and upgrades to the community center. The commissioners approved $90,000, which includes all but a bus stop shelter and upgrades to the kitchen in the community center building.

The other project approved by the commissioners that the advisory board recommended no funding was by NoLo for mechanical, plumming and electrical work for a backcountry hut. Approval amount was $109,089.

Mitchell voted no on the approval, saying it was a historical building improvement project, not an outdoor recreation project.

Other projects approved include Willhoint Ranch conservation easement transactional costs for $36,400. Michigan Creek, with 34 acres of pristine wetlands, is located on the property.

A $100,000 study by Mosquito Range Heritage Initiative regarding mining claims on several mountains over 14,000 feet in elevation. The land might be purchased and added to the United States Forest Service lands. Purchase price will come from federal government and partners.

A trail construction project along Rich Creek was approved for $15,000.

Other approvals

Materials on the following approvals can be found under the May 25 agenda on the county website.

South Park National Heritage Area federal funding in the amount of $100,000 was approved for 17 projects.

Tom Eisenman was appointed as the acting chief building inspector until someone is hired. Sheila Cross, who was filling the position, resigned.

Five ambulance licenses were approved.

A resolution was approved, appointing three members to the Central Mountains Regional Emergency Medical And Trauma Advisory Council.

Travis Sirhal’s property in Jefferson was rezoned from mixed use to commercial, to allow an auto storage lot. Sirhal has a contract with Colorado State Patrol to store vehicles involved in accidents. No conditions were added.

The commissioners approved a release and hold harmless agreement for 2021 Human Potential Race series that will take place around Fairplay this summer.

The commissioners approved a resolution opposing state Initiative 16 that will appear on the 2022 general election ballot. It is also called PAUSE, which stands for “Protect Animals from Unnecessary Suffering And Exploitation.” Commissioners said it will ruin agriculture in Colorado.

The commissioners voted to oppose President Biden’s executive order 14008, Tackling Climate Change, section 216, also known as the 30 x 30 program.  The commissioners said it requires the United States Department of Interior to develop a plan to conserve 30 percent of the lands and waters in the United States by the year 2030.

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