Town of Mountain Village offers residents smart irrigation control incentive

Smart Irrigation Controls

Words by Kathrine Warren / Development, Environment

As part of its effort to encourage environmentally friendly measures in the home and beyond, the Town of Mountain Village is offering a rebate to homeowners when they take measures to increase the efficiency of their irrigation systems.

The goal is simple: to help residents use only the water they need to achieve the desired results on their property. As water becomes an increasingly precious resource worldwide, water conservation efforts are critical for helping reduce water consumption.

When Mountain Village property owners replace their outdated irrigation control system with a WaterSense product, which includes weather sensing capabilities, the Town will offer a rebate of up to $500.

“These controllers are really a win-win for our residents,” said J.D. Wise, Mountain Village’s plaza services manager. “In addition to being a great water conservation tool, their ability to react and adjust to real-time weather conditions can truly have positive impacts on the overall health of a landscape. It’s exciting to see this technology continue to be embraced and improved on by a number of manufacturers. “

WaterSense is a certified smart irrigation control product sponsored by the Environmental Protection Agency which helps homes meet the EPA’s criteria for efficiency. These controllers use real-time local weather data, including humidity, wind speed, air temperature, soil moisture, solar radiation and rainfall to calculate evapotranspiration rates and automatically adjust irrigation watering accordingly.

Most smart irrigation controllers either connect to the Internet for weather data or collect real-time weather data from an on-site station on the property. Some of these controllers can be monitored over the Internet and the settings controlled remotely, while others can be linked to other “smart” devices in your home. With a smart irrigation controller, your plants and lawn get the water they need, without being over or under watered.

“Gone are the days when a rain sensor was the only option to automatically turn the water on or off,” Wise added. “Now, a number of these systems can adjust your daily run-times so that on a cool, cloudy day, your landscape is receiving less water than on a hot, dry day.  Not only does this conserve water, but it also improves irrigation efficiency, and helps to achieve optimal plant health.”

Residents are encouraged to consult with their landscaping professional to choose the best WaterSense rated controller and submit the Smart Irrigation Controls Program application to receive a rebate of up to $500 for the cost of the controller. (Please note, this program does not cover the cost of installation).

This incentive program is open until funds are exhausted and is for residents of Mountain Village, Ski Ranches and West Meadows.

For more information please contact J.D. Wise at (970) 369-8235 or please visit

PUBLIC NOTICE-Mountain Village notice of revised public hearing dates for Village Court Apartments Expansion Development Review

Village Court Apartments

Words by Kathrine Warren / Development, Government, Housing

This notice advises the public of a revised Town Council public hearing date that was to be held on June 20, 2019, at the Mountain Village Town Hall located at 455 Mountain Village Blvd, Suite A.

The Planning and Development Services Department is notifying the public that the Town Council public hearing related to Village Court APartments (VCA) Phase IV Expansion originally scheduled for June 20, 2019 has been revised to the regularly scheduled Town Council meeting on July 18, 2019.

The Town has been pursuing expansion of VCA with the intention to build an additional 49 rental dwelling units consisting of one- and two-bedroom apartments. The purpose of the rescheduled public hearing on July 18 is to discuss the required height variance, along with a rezone and density transfer required to increase the density from 42 remaining unbuilt employee apartments to 49 employee apartments — an increase of 7 units.

In addition to the rescheduled Town Council, public hearings described above, on June 6, 2019 the Design Review Board (DRB) will consider a 2-step design review and provide a recommendation to Town Council regarding a height variance, rezone and density transfer. The following schedule provides for the overall process including important dates moving forward:

Date and Time of Public Hearing(s):
DRB Hearing Date: June 6, 2019
DRB Hearing Time: 10:00 a.m. or as soon as practicable thereafter

DRB Hearing Date: July 11, 2019
DRB Hearing Time: 10:00 a.m. or as soon as practicable thereafter

First Council Hearing Date: July 18, 2019 REVISED
Council Hearing Time: 8:30 a.m. or as soon as practicable thereafter

Second Council Hearing Date: August 15, 2019 REVISED
Council Hearing Time: 8:30 or as soon as practicable thereafter

Detailed Summary of Development Application(s): DRB Design Review (two-step process) rezone and density transfer to increase density from 42 remaining unbuilt employee apartments to 49 employee apartments, an increase of 7 units. In addition, the applicant is requesting a concurrent variance for the maximum height of the two new apartment buildings due to heights higher than the CDC allows.

Anyone interested may appear and be heard at the hearing, or submit comments in writing to [email protected]. Written comments will be accepted until 5 p.m., July 12, 2019.

To see the submitted proposal and plans please visit the Town of Mountain Village’s Current Planning Projects.

Mountain Village offers building permit fee discounts with smart building measures

Smart BUild

Words by Kathrine Warren / Community, Development

In an effort to reduce energy and greenhouse gas emissions, the Town of Mountain Village (TMV) offers property owners up to 100 percent off building permit fees with its Smart Building Incentive Program.

“The Smart Build Incentive Program has been in place since 2015 and reflects the TMV commitment to reducing development’s carbon footprint by smart design. We hope to educate our building community to take advantage of this program in order to reduce building permit fees and encourage energy-efficient design,” said Michelle Haynes, planning and development services director.

The Smart Building Incentive Program offers three owner incentives which can be used for individual building permit fee discounts, or collectively for a full fee waiver. This could save homeowners upwards of tens of thousands of dollars depending on project size.

“The more you lower the energy use of your home the more efficient or “smart” your home is and the higher building permit waiver you get,” said Zoe Dohnal, Mountain Village’s business development and community engagement coordinator.

The first owner initiative is focused on offsetting energy use by renewable energy. A 20 percent building permit fee discount is available for any project with either no exterior energy use or at least 20 percent of estimated energy use being offset by a renewable energy source.

Additionally, Mountain Village’s Solar Energy Incentive program offers a 40 cent rebate per watt up to a total rebate of $2,000. An average home will install a 4,000-watt system which would equate to a $1,600 rebate from Mountain Village.

The second initiative focuses on eliminate exterior energy. A 15 percent building fee permit discount is available for buildings designed with no exterior energy use elements other than lighting and an owner signs a convenient forfeiting the right to install any exterior energy use within 50 years of receiving the property’s certificate of occupancy.

Up to a 100 percent fee discount is available for buildings with a Home Energy Rating (HERS) rating of 50 or lower. HERS ratings can be lowered by either installing on-site or off-site solar photovoltaic systems.

For questions and more information, please contact the Mountain Village Planning and Development Department by emailing our planning department or calling (970)369-8251.

Mountain Village waives deed-restricted development fees

Deed Restricted Housing Incentive

Words by Kathrine Warren / Communications, Development, Housing

MOUNTAIN VILLAGE, COLO.  (March 13, 2019) – When Adam Miller and his wife Nancy bought a plot of deed-restricted land in Mountain Village’s the Boulders, they knew it would take some time before they would be able to build on it. Working in the construction sector, Miller is all too familiar with the building and permitting process, both of which are costly.  They had begun drafting up plans in 2014 but weren’t able to move forward until this year.

Last fall the Town of Mountain Village announced it would begin waiving both development and building permit fees for all deed-restricted construction projects starting in 2019, dreams of their own home became more attainable.

“This makes a huge difference for us,” Miller said. Both Miller and his wife, Nancy, are firefighters and are raising two young kids, and he said the fee waiver encouraged them to start drawing up architectural plans for their future home. “The whole process has been easy, and hopefully we can continue to find ways for people to live here.”

They expect to begin building this spring.

Last October the Town of Mountain Village Town Council unanimously voted to waive all planning, development and building permit fees for deed-restricted housing units effective Jan. 1, 2019. Deed-restricted workforce housing gives local workers and their families the ability to rent and own homes at below-market rates.

Michelle Haynes, planning and development services director states, “Planning and building permit activity for deed-restricted housing has been minimal compared to free market activity over the past few years.”

“We are excited about Town Council’s commitment to waiving development fees regarding existing and new deed-restricted construction,” Haynes continued. “We hope this will encourage new deed restricted construction, as well as incentivize those that have existing deed-restricted units to upkeep and maintain their units. Money that would have otherwise paid town development fees, can now be used to pay for labor and materials to improve and maintain our deed-restricted inventory.”

By waiving town fees, the town sought to encourage owners of deed-restricted units to maintain existing units and offer greater financial incentive to construct deed-restricted units on remaining deed-restricted properties.

“Mountain Village had some current incentives in place such as waiving the road impact fee and reduced water and sewer tap fees,” Haynes said. “However, after a review of the existing fee schedule, Haynes stated, “we felt we could do more, and the Town Council unanimously supported this direction.”

“The town is actively working to construct additional workforce housing and we’re looking forward to an additional 49-units coming online with the upcoming VCA expansion. Despite this investment, we are acutely aware of the need for more affordable housing and wanted to do whatever we could to support the generation of more affordable workforce housing construction,” said Mountain Village Mayor Laila Benitez.

“There are still quite a few deed-restricted lots available in Mountain Village. If waiving building and planning fees allows us to provide a home for even one additional family then I will be thrilled with the outcome of this program,” Benitez added.

The Town of Mountain Village has 539 built units dedicated to both deed-restricted and workforce housing which consists of roughly 47 percent of San Miguel County’s affordable housing inventory.

For program information, please email our planning department or call 970.369.8242.

Mountain Village seeks to amend Community Development Code to better align with Comprehensive Plan

Vilalge Center Single Family Rezone

Words by Kathrine Warren / Community, Development

On Thursday, Jan. 3, 2019 the Town of Mountain Village’s Design Review Board will consider a recommendation to Town Council regarding a Community Development Code (CDC) amendment, aimed at implementing the Mountain Village Comprehensive Plan.

The proposed amendment seeks to modify Section 17.3.4 of the CDC to allow for certain properties in the Village Center Subarea — which are currently zoned single family — to subdivide, transfer density or rezone to better align with goals outlined in the Comprehensive Plan.

Currently, the town’s CDC does not allow for further subdivision, density transfers or rezoning of any single-family lots, which creates inconsistencies with the town’s long-term planning visions and effectively eliminates the town’s ability to implement its goals in the Comprehensive Plan for the Village Center.

“This amendment really makes sense from a planning perspective,” said Mountain Village’s Senior Planner John Miller. “As planners, we are always trying to implement the community vision that has been created by the public, and at the same time we are constantly trying to create smart community design, especially buffers between incompatible uses.”

“By implementing the vision of the Comprehensive Plan, we can effectively create a transition zone of condominiums helping to maintain the overall character of the single-family neighborhoods that circumvent the Village Center,” Miller continued.

The Comprehensive Plan, which was adopted by Council in 2011 and amended by Council in 2014 and 2017, serves as the guiding visionary document for future growth and development throughout Mountain Village and particularly within designated subareas such as the Village Center.

It states, “Mountain Village Center is the heart of the town, and within it [development of multiple parcels] are recommended in order to improve the overall economic vibrancy and character [of the community]”.

To accomplish this envisioned economic vibrancy, the Plan provides for the development of certain parcels of land identified in the Subarea Plan as Parcels C-1, C-2 and C-3; also known as Lots 89-2A, 89-2B, 89-2C, 89-3A, 89-3B, 89-3C, 89-3D, and 104. These lots are located on Mountain Village Boulevard near the Village Pond, and although they currently maintain a single-family zoning designation, the Comprehensive Plan designates this area to be developed as a mixture of ridgeline and flagship condominiums.

“Subdividing, density transfers and rezoning outside of the Village Center will not be affected by the proposed amendment, and any future development within the area affected will need to have general conformance with the Comprehensive Plan,” Miller said.

The Design Review Board is expected to make a recommendation to Town Council, and the amendment could have a first hearing Jan. 17, 2019 and a final hearing Feb. 21, 2019.

For more information about the proposed CDC amendment, please visit our Current Planning page.

Date and Time of Public Hearing(s):

DRB Hearing Date & Time: January 3, 2018, 10:30 a.m. or as soon as practicable thereafter
Council Hearing Date & Time: January 17, 2018, time TBA (Schedule and agenda to be set in early January)
Final Council Hearing Date: February 21, 2018(Schedule and agenda to be set in early January)

Mountain Village Waives Fees to Incentivize Deed-Restricted Housing Projects

Deed Restricted Housing Incentive

Words by Bill Kight / Development, Housing

The Town of Mountain Village is taking significant measures to incentivize new deed-restricted construction and to encourage maintenance and improvements to existing deed-restricted units.

In its monthly October meeting, the Town of Mountain Village Town Council unanimously voted to waive all planning, development and building permit fees for deed-restricted housing units effective Jan. 1, 2019.

Michelle Haynes, planning and development services director states, “Planning and building permit activity for deed-restricted housing has been minimal compared to free market activity over the past few years.”

“Telluride Ski and Golf last opened 30 apartments in the Meadows called Meadow View Apartments in 2017, and there is one deed-restricted detached condominium in the Boulders currently in design review,” Haynes continued. “As the Town of Mountain Village has 539 built deed-restricted units, the largest number in the region, we continue to explore ways to advocate for affordable housing.”

By waiving town fees, the town aims to encourage owners of deed-restricted units to maintain existing units and offer greater financial incentive to construct deed-restricted units on remaining deed restricted properties.

“The Town had some current incentives in place such as waiving the road impact fee and reduced water and sewer tap fees,” Haynes said. “However, after a review of the existing fee schedule, Haynes stated, “we felt we could do more, and the Town Council unanimously supported this direction.”

For example, a free market building permit with a $1 million valuation would cost approximately$45,000 for the building permit plus $10,000 for the water and sewer tap fees and $3,500  for the design review application. The same permit for a deed-restricted property would cost only $4,000 for the building permit, which is the cost of county taxes, $5,000 for the water and sewer tap fee and no fee for design review.

“The only fee we cannot waive are taxes paid to the county,” stated Haynes, “which constitutes the $4,000 permit fee for a deed-restricted property. By incentivizing, the town hopes to see new construction, remodels, maintenance, and repair.” Haynes said.

For program information, please contact Planning and Development Services Director, Michelle Haynes by email [email protected], by (970) 239-4061 or by visiting

Mayor’s Minute Rosewood Edition

Mayors Minute

Words by Laila Benitez / Community, Development, Government

Hello neighbors,

At the February 15 Town Council Meeting, Council voted unanimously to approve a Standstill Agreement with Northlight, the owners of Lots 126R and 152R (historically referred to as “Rosewood”). Since then, many of you have reached out with questions about these lots, the scope of the project, and the Standstill Agreement – below are responses to a few of the most common questions.

What is the original zoning and density of the Rosewood lots? Can we revert to the original zoning of these lots?

Mayors Minute Original Zoning

In 1984 and 1987, the properties that came to be known as “Rosewood” were originally platted as a mix of hotel, condo, commercial, and employee units with a total density of 310 units. The platting was executed by Ron Allred/Telluride Company, with approval by the Board of County Commissioners and the County Planning Commission. By 2007, through the course of land purchases and rezoning with the planned unit development (PUD) approval, this parcel of lots consisted of more condo units, fewer hotel units, and 38,666 square foot of designated commercial property with a combined density of 345 units. The development history of these properties through the years is extensive and available online.



Mayors Minute Rosewood Current ZoningI share this snapshot to illustrate that going back to the original platting, is not straightforward and would call for 310 density units. Since the original platting of these lots, the zoning of these properties has always included a hotel, condo, and commercial units. The zoning history and density units are not solely a function of the 2007 PUD but also are tied to the Original Zoning that has run with these properties since they were first platted in 1984 and 1987.





What is the Standstill Agreement? Isn’t the Standstill Agreement just an extension of the 2007 PUD?

The Standstill Agreement is not an extension of the 2007 PUD, and it instead requires a new PUD application, if the owners desire to proceed. The town chose to move forward with the Standstill Agreement because it barred any development on the lots during the term of the Standstill Agreement; requires a new PUD application, which will be reviewed by the community, DRB, and Town Council; and must be approved only through the open, public process by Town Council. The 2007 Rosewood PUD expired on March 31, 2018. However, the owners of the properties would have still been able to move forward by filing an application to build by right had there not been a Standstill Agreement. The Standstill Agreement will remain in effect through all phases of a new PUD application process.

It is important to note that the Standstill Agreement does not imply that any application will be approved or that the application will be reviewed in an expedited manner. The applicants must follow the town’s process as detailed in section 17.4.12 of the Community Development Code.

Per the terms of the Standstill Agreement, any new PUD application must have significant reductions to the overall mass and scale of the expired 2007 project plans and make substantial reductions to the land use and densities occurring on the property. Furthermore, before submitting any new application, the applicants are required to hold two public open house meetings to obtain community feedback. The first public open house meeting was held March 28 and the next scheduled public open house meeting will be held May 10 at the Mountain Village Town Hall. Additionally, Northlight has agreed to hold a conceptual Work session, which will be open to the public, and a third public meeting this summer. These meetings will be live-streamed and available for viewing afterward.

Will the Town Council be reviewing the 2007 PUD or a new PUD? What happens next?

Per the terms of the Standstill Agreement, a new PUD application must be submitted by June 15, 2018. The applicants will need to go through the entire PUD process and the application will be reviewed without regard to the original PUD. Below is a tentative outline of the next steps in the PUD process:

  • May 10        Public Meeting #2 hosted by Northlight
  • June 15       New PUD Application Deadline per Standstill Agreement
  • June/July     Conceptual Work session with DRB  & Town Council for Outline PUD Application
  • July             Public Meeting #3 hosted by Northlight
  • August        Outline PUD to be presented to DRB/Town Council
  • October      Final Outline PUD Application & Review by Town Council

Once the town receives a new PUD application, we will send out a formal outline of the timeline and steps required per the town’s PUD process.

This project has been a hot topic for decades, and I expect that many of us on Town Council and throughout the community will not always agree on the best ways to proceed. Regardless, it is imperative that we all remember we are neighbors, above all else, and as such we should discuss and evaluate these topics with respect and candor. We have a shared responsibility to our village so please take part in the public process and email or call me with any specific questions or concerns you may have.

On a related note, beginning June 5, I will be hosting monthly walks on the first Tuesday of every month. I hope this will be an opportunity for us to have open conversations while we discuss current events and projects. Stay tuned for more info.

Warm regards,

Laila Benitez
Mountain Village Mayor

Town Hall & Village Center Subarea Planning and Initiatives


Words by Special Contributor / Community, Development, Government

During March 2018’s Town Council meeting there were several updates related to planning initiatives for the Town Hall and Village Center Subareas.

In 2016, the Town of Mountain Village, Telluride Mountain Village Owners Association (TMVOA), and Telluride Ski & Golf  Resort (TSG) in a collaborative effort formed a committee to carefully evaluate and engage a public process to determine the most appropriate uses for the Town Hall Subarea (THS). In June 2017, after an 18-month effort that included several public Work sessions, Town Council unanimously approved an amendment to the Comprehensive Plan to replace the THS chapter. View the amended THS chapter.

At the March 15 Town Council meeting, Council heard from committee members and consultants from AECOM on next-step planning for critical elements of the approved THS plan that are aligned with community feedback and will enable and/or promote future development phasing. Specifically, four priority items serve as the “spine of the overall THS plan”: Roundabout, Roadway Consolidation, Elk Lake/Park, and School Bus Stop. During this year, surveying, civil engineering, and planning will take place to understand costs and implementation planning better.

Council was updated on the committee’s planning efforts for the Village Center Subarea (VCS). In the second half of 2017, the committee began discussing the VCS and ways to implement the existing Comp Plan actions for this subarea. The committee updated Council in October 2017 and identified three categories to help focus the following objectives: Vibrancy and Activation, Infrastructure, and Undeveloped Parcels.

During the past few months, the committee further discussed the implementation of principals, policies and actions, with attention to land use values and vision statements in the 2011 Comprehensive Plan. This resulted in a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) that Council considered at the March 15 meeting. After thorough discussion, Council approved the MOU.

Joint Town Council & Design Review Board – Special Work session Regarding Village Center Roofing Requirements and Design Themes

Village Center Roofing Material

Words by Special Contributor / Community, Development, Event

Town Council and The Design Review Board (DRB) in collaboration with Telluride Mountain Village Owner’s Association (TMVOA) will hold a Joint Work session on Thursday, February 22 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. to discuss amendments to the Community Development Code (CDC) Village Center roofing material requirements and Village Center design themes. This work session will be held at Mountain Village Town Hall with a walking tour.

Rob Rydel, Principal with Oz Architecture, will lead the discussion covering topics such as color palette, defining architectural features and design themes. The community will have the opportunity to visually review similar ski mountain communities both nationally and internationally to help guide the discussion.

Rob’s architectural and master planning experience ranges from resort, hospitality and condominium projects as well as some multi-family residential community work. Expert at OZ’s highly collaborative charrette process that clarifies design goals, vision and direction through a consensus-based model, he often demonstrates options and possibilities through elegant hand sketches that bring a project instantly to life. Rob’s international background and education contribute to his enthusiasm for international work and a global design perspective.

Please join us for this community discussion and walking tour of Village Center’s roofing and design themes with Rob Rydel, community members, and staff.

View the agenda – February 22, 2018 Joint Town Council & Design Review Board Special Worksession Agenda or email Planning and Development Services Director, Michelle Haynes, for more information.


Please join our Event on Facebook!

Design Review Board has Four Open Seats

DRB Open Seats

Words by Special Contributor / Community, Development

The Design Review Board (DRB) has four open seats with a benefit of a ski pass. This opportunity is open to the “at large” community. The DRB is responsible for reviewing the design of new structures, remodels, sign requests, landscaping plans and other architectural and aesthetic matters; board members act as a planning commission, too. This volunteer board meets the first Thursday of each month with special meetings as needed and

“ We would like a balanced Board of experienced architects and designers, contractors and construction workers, planners and community members.” – Town of Mountain Village Design Review Board

To apply, please submit your letter of intent and resume by 5 p.m. February 19 to Jane Marinoff.



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