Article by Scott Condon of the Aspen Times:
The Roaring Fork Club in Basalt is expected to bring another wave of economic vitality to Basalt after securing approvals from the Town Council on Tuesday night to expand the number of luxury cabins by 25 percent.
The private golf and fishing club is already one of the primary economic drivers of the town because it has 51 luxury cabins, which are owned by club members. They attract second-home owners, particularly during warm-weather months.
The council approved another 13 cabins along the westerly and northerly edges of hole 5 at the golf course. The cabins will be larger than the initial generation and will be offered first to existing club members.
“We think this project, by the very nature of the buyers, really strengthens community in Basalt,” said Bill Kane of Design Workshop, which is handling the site design and landscape architecture. “I think they’re really looking for ways to support the community while they’re here.”
The town will reap additional property taxes and revenue from a real estate transfer assessment from the expansion. There also will be more people dining, shopping and seeking services at midvalley businesses.
The cabins will be 3,200 to 4,000 square feet in one- and two-story configurations, according to a FAQ section on the club’s website. One of the key considerations for the project was providing larger cabins for members who need additional space for their extended families. The original cabins are 2,400 square feet.
At the time the FAQ page was set up in August, it was estimated that the site purchase, site development and cabin construction would cost between $4.4 million and $5.2 million for each cabin. Sites will likely be ready to sell early next year.
Even though the new cabins step up the luxury, the club is sticking to its paths when it comes to access. The cabin owners will have automobile parking in two-car, fully enclosed and over-sized garages at the entry to the cabin area. Access to the cabins is via a golf cart path.
The golf club also plans to substantially increase its employee-housing inventory. The existing 22 affordable-housing units will be demolished and replaced with 42 units northwest of the current location.
The club plans to bring in modular units from a manufacturer in Grand Junction for the affordable housing. It will shorten the duration of construction, said Dennis Carruth, development manager for the project.
“We can do that in three months’ time,” Carruth told the Town Council. “With stick built, we’d be looking at nine months.”
Approvals also were granted for a single-family-home site, an equipment storage building, one single-family-home site and 88 additional parking spaces. An existing home on property that the Roaring Fork Club leases from the Kittle family will be converted to affordable housing. Councilman Mark Kittle currently lives in the home. He has recused himself from deliberations and votes on Roaring Fork Club.
The club plans to complete the purchase of the Kittle property early in 2018, which will allow the expansion. There was no opposition to the project from the public. The council approved the project 6-0.
Kane stressed to the council that the cabins and all other new buildings will meet Basalt’s new environmental building code for construction, heating and cooling systems, and use of alternative energy sources. Photovoltaic systems will be installed on “all the roof forms that really work,” he said.
“There’s a pretty aggressive environmental agenda here,” Kane said.