Cardiff Glen plans get mixed reviews
The new developer of Cardiff Glen is revamping the design of some multi-family residential units to make them more in keeping with the “old-town” look intended for the subdivision.Tom Stevens, vice president of regional operations for Village Homes, also told Glenwood Springs City Council recently that the intention continues to be to offer homes that are more affordable than the norm for Glenwood Springs.”It’s a nice niche for us, it’s worked well for us and it’s where we want to stay,” Stevens said during a conceptual review for 33 units at Cardiff Glen, near the municipal airport.While council members seemed to welcome Stevens’ plans in general, a few raised concerns that plans to include a commercial element have been abandoned.Dave Merritt, who sat on the city Planning & Zoning Commission when Cardiff Glen was being reviewed, called the change a mistake, saying the developers had promised to create a more diverse subdivision, rather than just providing more housing.Cardiff Glen is a Victorian-style neighborhood that incorporates some “new urbanism” planning concepts. One concept was to have some commercial services close to homes.Stevens said one reason for not doing that is that the owner of Mountain Market on Midland Avenue feared building commercial space at Cardiff Glen could put him out of business.Also, Stevens said, the city had previously indicated it would open a southern access route to Highway 82 by now, and that has yet to happen. He believes such a route is needed to make commercial businesses feasible at Cardiff Glen. “The worst thing that could happen to Cardiff Glen is to build a commercial facility out there and not be able to fill it. Is that a gamble that we’re willing to take? No,” Stevens said.Said council member Dan Richardson, “Perhaps you could just keep it in the back of your mind, knowing that the city would like to see commercial space happen there.”Stevens used this week’s conceptual review to also introduce council to Village Homes, Cardiff Glen’s new developer. Stevens also formerly worked for the original Cardiff Glen developers. He said the original plan was to build the subdivision in two-year phases, with completion of the project in eight to 10 years.However, developers began looking at alternatives, including borrowing money to increase the pace of construction, selling the development, or finding a partner.”We very quickly began to put all our eggs into the Village Homes basket,” he said.He said Village Homes is the largest privately owned builder in the state, and builds about 600 homes a year, all in Colorado. It has received awards for its work both nationally and in Colorado, Stevens said.Village Homes’ takeover of Cardiff Glen last year reflected its interest in establishing a presence in western Colorado, Stevens said. It also is working on projects in New Castle, Eagle and Grand Junction, but is basing its main regional office in Glenwood Springs.Stevens said Cardiff Glen began with construction of single-family homes on 36 lots. Now it is focusing on town homes and condominiums, all to be sold rather than rented out.”The townhomes are our intermediary price point product,” he said.Eight have been built so far in Cardiff Glen during the subdivision’s second phase of building, he said.But he said Village Homes is working on redesigning the “skin” of the multifamily units to make them look more like the single-family homes.”I didn’t feel they captured the feel of old Glenwood the way I felt the houses did,” he said.He said it’s hard to predict prices until the design work is complete, but two- to three-bedroom, multifamily units may run $230,000-$250,000, which is what developers originally had been shooting for, taking into account inflation.It also would be less than average for Glenwood Springs, he said.In response to concerns by representatives of Cardiff Glen’s homeowners association, Stevens also promised that Village Homes would find a new place for a bus stop that will be lost due to the new phase of construction.Contact Dennis Webb: 945-8515, ext. firstname.lastname@example.org
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