C-dale trustees will consider Home Depot
CARBONDALE, Colo. Talks concerning the Crystal River Marketplace were on the agenda, and on Tuesday, the Carbondale town trustees agreed to meet with a representative of Home Depot to see what the large-format home improvements retailer could offer the town.Rich Schierburg, the potential developer of the 24-acre site off Highway 133, said Home Depot would be willing to work with the town to build something that would suit Carbondale. That would mean possibly scaling down the building to about 88,000 square feet, he said, as well as making the building itself and the overall development “green.” Schierburg and representatives from Home Depot met with consultants from the Old Snowmass-based “think and do tank” the Rocky Mountain Institute (RMI) last week. Schierburg said he is convinced going green “makes a lot of sense.””They know the environment up here; they know they are going to have to respond,” said Schierburg of Home Depot. He asserted that Home Depot is one of the hottest retailers in the country right now, attempting to quell fears that the store wouldn’t be able to make it in Carbondale. Schierburg came to the trustees asking for some direction on what type of development plan would be approved for the site. After a joint design charette process yielded two development options, Schierburg asked to add a third option that included a large format anchor.Schierburg said he has looked into the preferred development option (option one) that came out of the town’s Economic Roadmap Group (RMG) design charette process. He said he has contacted about 60 of the so-called junior anchors, and none of them are interested in coming to Carbondale. Being a developer for more than 25 years, Schierburg said he understands why the smaller chain stores aren’t interested. One reason is the proposed expansion of the Glenwood Meadows, he said, and another is the fact that the site isn’t located off a major highway. Moreover, a town population of just over 6,000 doesn’t meet the requirements for most mid-level stores, unless there’s a nearby big-box retailer.Trustee Alice Laird asked why a Home Depot, the only large-format anchor that has shown continued interest in the site, would care to locate in a place that junior anchors would not?”These guys are good, they spend a lot of time and money looking at markets,” Schierburg said. “They wouldn’t be wasting their time talking to me if they didn’t think it would work.”Option three came about because Schierburg said he didn’t feel like the trustees could give him the assurance he needed that they would approve option two.Trustees John Foulkrod, Stacey Patch Bernot and Ed Cortez, as well as Mayor Michael Hassig, have said they are not comfortable converting the commercially zoned property into a mainly residential development because of the financial implications.Post Independent, Glenwood Springs, Colorado CO
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