New spin to tennis court negotiations | PostIndependent.com
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New spin to tennis court negotiations

Post Independent Photo/Jim Noelker
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GLENWOOD SPRINGS – Area tennis enthusiasts loved the decision served up Tuesday by the city Planning and Zoning Commission. But the match isn’t over yet. The commission recommended approval to build four tennis courts at the Community Center, three of which must be built this year. But the courts still must receive City Council approval. When the idea of building four courts was first bounced around, there was little, if any, resistance. But a report written by city planner Patti Haefeli states that the area proposed for the courts was already designated as future parking for the Community Center theater. “Basically, it would have eliminated 126 parking spaces that are necessary for theater use,” Haefeli said. For this reason, Haefeli recommended denial of the requested variance. But at the meeting, a letter from the five-member executive committee of Friends of the Theater informed Haefeli and the planning commission that the group will try to change the future location of the theater to the Roaring Fork and Colorado rivers confluence area. “The theater group strongly supports the downtown confluence area as the best location for the theater. We find this area more attractive as a theater district, with the added amenities of the river’s beauty and the promise of proposed adequate parking,” the letter said. “They felt the confluence area is a more conducive area for that kind of development,” Haefeli said. The change in plans introduced by the theater group convinced Haefeli to recommend approving the courts – but there were still conditions. Once the courts are built in 2003 and 2004 – three will be built this year and one, located in the aquatic center’s staging area, will be built after the pool is completed – it would be up to theater supporters to deal with any parking variances if the theater is built at the Community Center. “If the theater wants to come to the Community Center, it’ll have to comply with code,” Haefeli said. “They have some options, but it seemed clear that the theater was looking for alternate sites.”After the desire for a new theater location was introduced, the planning commission recommended approval of all necessary permits. City Council is expected to consider approval of the tennis court building permits on July 17 at its regular meeting. Newly-hired Parks and Recreation Department director Bill Efting said he thought the meeting went well. “They didn’t eliminate the opportunity for the theater to be there,” he said. Efting said he’s hoping the first three courts can be built before winter sets in. “If I can come up with the money, they’ll be built in late summer or early fall,” he said.In other action Tuesday, the planning commission:-Recommended approval for a 22,500-square-foot office building at 1605 Grand Ave. The commission also approved a special use permit for a veterinary use within the C-1 zone district and a variance from the maximum allowed building height. -Recommended denial for a request to annex, rezone, subdivide and grant a major development permit for 33 townhomes at the corner of Overlin Drive. Contact Greg Mass: 945-8515, ext. 511gmasse@postindependent.com


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