Fraser trustees review final plan for mixed-use retail, residential development on US Highway 40 frontage
The empty lot at the intersection of 406 Zerex St. and 315 Fraser Ave., once home to One Love Bar and Grill and a private residence, has recently been busy with excavators and other heavy equipment. A new mixed-use development is currently in the works there, with developer plans to offer retail and residential space, including workforce housing.
Byson Investments will develop the project as it meets final approval by the Fraser Board of Trustees. During the board’s July 20 meeting, Byson Investments’ managing partners, Kevin Rifkin and Greg Bechler, presented their final plat and major site plan for the trustees’ approval. Representatives from Fraser’s Planning Department, Alyssa Rivas and Ben Thurston of Baseline Engineering Corporation, were also present, to oversee the proposal.
“We are so happy to have such a strong contingent of Fraser and Grand County residents on our development team, as we feel this will help us deliver something that truly meets the needs of those living in Downtown Fraser,” Byson Investments wrote in their cover letter to the town.
Peter Nelson and Krista Klancke of the Fraser-based firm Peter Nelson Architecture will serve as the project’s architects. PGArnold will be project’s general contractor, with Thomas Elliot of Winter Park leading the team.
During the meeting, Rifkin and Bechler gave a run-down of what the two sites in the proposed development would look like and took questions. Earlier drafts of their plan had already met trustees’ approval.
The first building, fronting U.S. Highway 40 where it segues to Zerex Street, will be mixed-use commercial/residential. Byson proposed 4,000 square feet of retail on the ground floor and 10 two-bedroom, two-bathroom apartment units above. The second building, at the intersection of Fraser Avenue and Doc Susie Avenue, will be residential. A nine-space parking garage and two one-bedroom units will occupy the ground floor. On the second and third floors, there will be four three-bedroom units and four two-bedroom units. In total, a proposed 20 proposed units are geared for workforce housing for Grand County residents. The ground floor one-bedroom units in the residential building will also be deed restricted at 80% of area median income, meaning they are reserved for one person making less than $49,350 per year, or two people making a combined $56,400 per year.
Byson also plans for a sidewalk and two outdoor patios, with about 2,000 square feet of treed green space on the exterior of the lot, to provide a secluded buffer from the roads.
At least 39 parking spaces will be required for this development, which Byson has already met. However, the groups debated on the exact amount of parking during the meeting. Some felt more parking space should be required, especially since the development will make use of on-street parking potentially used by other businesses. Rifkin and Bechler stated they had already met the minimum parking requirements, which were reduced for their development because of its proximity to several Lift bus lines and the Amtrak train. Since development is also in a walkable, bikeable area, the developers felt these were viable alternatives to vehicle ownership. The trustees eventually decided to approve the development, with the condition that enough parking will be provided.
Rifkin and Bechler were confident they would provide the correct amount of parking spaces. Ideally, construction on the project will break ground this summer, with completion in the fall 2023.
In other business:
- Assistant Town Manager Michael Brack discussed Fraser’s affordable housing and mixed-use development, Victoria Village, which will be close to downtown Fraser. The town is currently seeking a developer for Victoria Village, with a formal session with prospective developers scheduled for September. Stay tuned for future articles on Victoria Village as the project moves forward.
- Finance Director Rob Clemens provided the treasurer’s report, noting that sales tax revenues are down due to businesses deferring filing sales tax, but revenues are expected to bounce back once businesses begin paying sales taxes again.
- The town welcomed their new deputy clerk, Leslie Crittenden.
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