August Mayor’s Minute

Mayors Minute

Words by Laila Benitez / Mayor's Minute

Hello neighbors,

Below are some Town Council meeting highlights from last month and some upcoming topics. As always, I hope you can join us for tomorrow’s meeting or consider sharing your feedback with us about any of these matters.

Last month, the four newly elected Town Council members: Dan Caton, Peter Duprey, Marti Prohaska, and I were sworn into office. Town Council next voted to elect Dan Caton to the position of Mayor Pro Tem and me to the role of Mayor for the next two-year term.

July 18 Agenda Topics:

  • Town Council made three appointments to the Telluride Regional Airport Authority (TRAA) Board: Richard Child was appointed to fulfill the remainder of Jon Dwight’s recently vacated term, Larry Crosby was as a regular member, and Tom Richards was appointed as the alternate. On behalf of Town Council, I would like to sincerely thank Jon Dwight for significant service on this key regional organization.
  • Alta Planning + Design presented a draft of the Trails’ Master Plan. This plan has been an ongoing project since last spring to update, refine, and expand upon the open space and recreation vision of the 2011 Comprehensive Plan. The plan still needs to undergo a priority analysis to determine which trails are most needed to improve safety, trail conditions, and user conflicts. We will review the estimated costs for trail construction and maintenance and available funding options later this year.
  • Town Council held a conceptual work session to discuss the proposed La Montagne development, historically referred to as the Rosewood. After a presentation from the applicant and hearing public comment, Council determined it was in the best interest of the community not to revoke the PUD and existing site-specific development plan from the properties. Historical information about these lots and the now-expired PUD are available for review here.

If you would like more specifics about any of these topics, you can watch a video of last month’s meeting on the town’s website. July’s meeting minutes will be posted online after they are approved at tomorrow’s meeting.

August 15 Agenda Topics:

  • Town Council will make appointments to the Ethics Commission, Mountain Village Community Grant Committee, and the Mountain Village Business Development Advisory Committee.
  • Council will hold a public hearing and vote on the second reading of an ordinance considering a density transfer, rezone, and height variance for the 49-unit expansion of the Village Court Apartments. Preliminary plans call for breaking ground on the affordable housing project later this year with funding through a revenue loan, paid for by the collected VCA rents and dedicated funding from the Mountain Village Affordable Housing Fund.
  • We will hear on first reading and vote on an ordinance regarding a request to convert a portion of a commercial unit, located at 98 Aspen Ridge, to an employee apartment.
  • Town Council will consider a number of safety enhancement options to help make biking and walking along Lower San Joaquin Road, Mountain Village Boulevard, and Upper Country Club Drive safer and easier. These three roads were selected based on public feedback, traffic conditions, and Town Council’s concerns about bikes and pedestrians through these corridors. If we decide to move forward with one or more of these enhancements, they would be considered for inclusion in the 2020 budget with construction beginning as early as next summer.
  • Town Council will also hold a work session to discuss efficiency lodge units, including background information on density limitations, zoning designations and specifically efficiency lodge units.  The Council will discuss and give direction to staff on next steps which include available options for owners and possible amendments to the Community Development Code (CDC) to clarify the definition and permitted uses of Efficiency Lodge units. Efficiency Lodge is a zoning designation comparable to what is commonly called a Hotel Room – a single room with a bathroom and limited kitchen facilities, primarily used for short-term accommodations. These CDC clarifications are being discussed to ensure that properties that were zoned to function as hotel rooms or “hot-beds”, are used as intended and allowed under current zoning.
  • Lastly, we will hear an update on the Village Center Pond Dredging Project. The Village Center Pond dredging is scheduled to begin this October in order to improve the health and overall appearance of the pond area. While we waited to move forward on this project, the town and TMVOA had concurrently been working with a landscape architect to determine what additional improvements could be made to the pond in conjunction with the dredging project. However, we recently learned that the Army Corps and EPA have determined that they are not willing to consider any additional work within the scope of our existing pond dredging permit, at this time. Once the project is complete, they will consider allowing additional improvements.

A full packet and agenda have been posted online; we welcome your input and hope to see you at the meeting.

Warm regards,

Laila Benitez
Mountain Village Mayor