April 2013

Woody Creek Sale April 22, 2013

Woody Creek Sale April 22, 2013

1814 Woody Creek Road



Three bedrooms/two baths

3.303 sf

Asking price $4,900,000

Sold price per square foot $953

64% of asking price

Photo by Gary Feldman

Posted by GaryFeldman on April 24, 2013 in

Aspen Sale April 17, 2013

Aspen Sale April 17, 2013

58 Exhibition Lane

Aspen Highlands Village


Four bedrooms/five baths

4,520 sf

Asking price $2,999,000

Price per square foot $630 

95% of asking price


Photo by Gary Feldman

Posted by GaryFeldman on April 24, 2013 in

Aspen Sale April 11, 2013

Aspen Sale April 11, 2013

1016 East Hyman Avenue, Unit 2



Four bedrooms/four baths

2,426 sf

Asking price $3,675,000

Sold price per square foot $1,378

91% of asking price

Photo by Gary Feldman

Posted by GaryFeldman on April 12, 2013 in

Aspen Sale April 10, 2013

Aspen Sale April 10, 2013

Double Bar X Ranch, Lot2

Stage Road



Single Family Building Site

Asking price$3,980,000

82% of asking price

Photo by Gary Feldman

Posted by GaryFeldman on April 12, 2013 in

Aspen Sale April 9, 2013

Aspen Sale April 9, 2013

Chateau Snow, Unit 201

926 East Waters Avenue



Two bedrooms/two baths

1,238 sf

Asking price$1,599,000

84% of asking price

Photo by Gary Feldman

Posted by GaryFeldman on April 11, 2013 in

Aspen Board of Realtors Observer - April, 2013

Aspen Board of Realtors Observer - April, 2013

ABOR Observer

April 2013

A rundown of the government and business activity over the last month, with particular focus on issues and

items that are important to the Real Estate community.

Inside this month’s Observer …

Aspen— Stirling comes out against housing mitigation increase

Snowmass Village – Toll Brothers takes control of Snowmass Club

Basalt – Town looking to revise affordable housing requirements

Pitkin County – Ski Company asks court to clarify mining claim ownership off Richmond Ridge

Aspen —

Former Aspen mayor against housing mitigation fee spike

Former Aspen Mayor Bill Stirling, in an opinion column published last month, came out firmly against a proposal to triple

the affordable housing fee charged for residential development in Aspen.

Stirling, a real estate broker who helped enact some of the town’s longstanding development regulations, pointed out

that the proposed fee hike would mean that construction of a 6,000 square foot home would require $686,000 in

housing mitigation, up from $224,000.

The popular former mayor urged City Council to reject the increases, pointing out that 40 percent of the workforce is

housed thanks to the current level of mitigation. He did agree that the accessory dwelling unit option, adopted during

his administration in the late 1980s and early 1990s, was not working as intended, and should be rethought.

New townhome plan submitted for S. Aspen Street

ASV Aspen Street Owner has reactivated its decade‐old approval to build townhomes and affordable housing units on S.

Aspen Street, beneath Lift 1A on Aspen Mountain. The developer seeks to amend a 2003 approval for 14 townhomes

and 17 affordable housing units on site by moving seven of the affordable housing to other locations in town, or paying

mitigation in the form of affordable housing certificates. The application likely signals the end of efforts to build a large

hotel there.

City Council faces pressure over final two phases of hospital expansion

Aspen City Council, which conceptually approved expansion of Aspen Valley Hospital in 2009, is under pressure from two

sides over whether to approve the final two phases and another 82,000 square feet. Critics say the project is too large

and too expensive, and they have become more vocal as it heads toward final approval. In response, AVH officials are

ramping up their messaging to the community and are finding themselves having to defend their reasoning behind the


Prime Hyman Mall property sold in foreclosure for nearly $6 million

Three commercial spaces in the Paragon building on the Hyman Mall were sold for $5.925 million at a foreclosure

auction. They include a 1,700‐square‐foot street‐level retail space, as well as two large basement spaces, totaling 5,750

square feet. The winning bidder was an LLC set up by Torchlight Loan Services of New York, a national manager of

distressed commercial loans.

Mountain House Lodge staves off foreclosure with bankruptcy

Financially strapped Mountain House Lodge filed for bankruptcy at the end of last month, allowing it to continue

operations. In addition to delaying the foreclosure action, the bankruptcy relinquishes the receivership in effect since


Bankruptcy papers show that the lodge has $4.16 million in assets and $7.9 million in liabilities. The biggest creditor is

the Aspen branch of Community Banks of Colorado, which is owed $5.92 million. Of that amount, $1.9 million is

unsecured, the petition says. That note is what drove the lodge into bankruptcy.

Mountain House Lodge has until April 25 to provide the federal bankruptcy court in Denver with details of how it will

operate through Chapter 11.

Sales and lodging taxes start year strong; RETT down considerably

Retail sales in 2013 started the year off strong, with sales tax revenues for January up 3 percent over the same month

last year. January lodging taxes were up 7 percent over from the same period in 2012. But real estate transfer tax

collections are down so far this year. RETT collections this year for the housing program are down 42 percent from the

first two months of 2012.

Retail landscape continues to change with moves by established locals

Susie’s, Aspen’s oldest and best known consignment store, has moved its in‐town location to the ground floor of the

Concept 600 Building. The move was necessary because its longstanding home on East Hopkins is being redeveloped.

Susie’s is also opening a new store in Willits.

Well regarded local jeweler Harmony Scott has relocated from the Hyman Avenue Mall to the second floor of the Mill

Street Plaza, above Cache Cache. Scott also has a store in Carbondale.

Bloomingbirds, one of Aspen’s most iconic local retailers, has moved from the Ute City Banque building on Galena to the

Kandykom Building on Hopkins.

Performance Ski will move into the Pomeroy Sports location (half a block closer to the gondola plaza) later this year. And

Hamilton Sports ski shop owner Bill Miller reportedly plans to open Miller Sports in the site due to be vacated by

Performance Ski.

Federal Court: Dude is a fraud

The Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed a jury's verdict that Harald Dude committed fraud when he took out a $1.9

million loan from Washington Mutual on his Aspen home, and then immediately used the house as collateral on another

$500,000 from Wells Fargo. Dude again hid the existence of the $1.9 million loan when he sold the house three years

later, when he sold the house. The title company's search did not find the Washington Mutual loan because it had been

recorded incorrectly. His ruse unraveled after he stopped paying back the $1.9 million and the bank attempted to

foreclose on the new owner of the house.

City to use treated wastewater on golf course

Colorado state water court signed off on a plan by the city of Aspen to divert treated wastewater for irrigation at the

golf course and, potentially, snowmaking at Buttermilk. Currently, the city has the capacity to divert 3 cubic feet per

second of water from Castle Creek, via the Holden and Marolt ditches, to the pond located at the municipal golf course.

By using treated wastewater, the city will be able to use its water for other purposes.

Johnson, Emmer announce for mayor

Aspen City Councilman Derek Johnson became the fourth sitting member of town council to announce plans to run for

mayor in the May 7 election. Also joining the race is Maurice Emmer, a critic of Mayor Mick Ireland and one of the

leaders of the campaign against the hydroelectric plant.

Johnson promises a more business‐friendly posture at the city. As co‐founder of the D&E ski and snowboard shop that

he sold to the Aspen Skiing Co., where he is now the manager of rental and retail operations, Johnson said it can be

difficult to run a business in Aspen. On the question of development, he says three‐ and four‐story buildings should be

OK in some instances, particularly if new lodging is part of the program.

A retired attorney and certified public accountant, Emmer and his wife Jamie have been homeowners and part‐time

residents for 16 years, and full‐time residents for more than three years. “Our forebears created a special place with a

diverse population, a place where we can balance a healthy lifestyle, a vibrant economy and stewardship of the

environment. In recent years, Aspen's government has strayed from the principles of the city's constitution, the city

Home Rule Charter. This has resulted in a government that is too isolated from Aspen's citizens. I want to help change

that,” he said in his announcement.

Mullins, Romero in race for council

Ann Mullins, chair of the Aspen Historic Preservation Commission, and former councilman Dwayne Romero, president of

Related Colorado, both entered the race for City Council, joining attorney Art Daily in the race for two open seats on


Mullins says she is well prepared for the position by her seven years on the Historic Preservation Commission, which has

allowed her to learn about all the nooks and crannies in town as well as the issues facing property owners. She said that

she favors a strategic and measured approach to development, but also understands the need to adapt to changing


Romero served on Aspen City Council between 2007 and 2011. He is currently president of Related Colorado, which

owns commercial and lodging properties in Snowmass Village. He is focusing his candidacy on improving civility in local


Snowmass Village —

Snowmass Club sold to Pennsylvania firm

The sale of the Snowmass Club for $9.1 million last month puts the property’s ownership under control of Toll Brothers,

a Pennsylvania‐based luxury home builder and operator of country clubs around the nation. The club has approximately

1,000 members, including the 290 owners of fractional vacation homes at Residences at Snowmass.

The centerpiece of the purchase is the award‐winning Jim Engh‐designed golf course. The sale also includes the 64,000

square foot clubhouse and two restaurants, Sage Restaurant & Patio and Black Saddle Bar & Grille.

Schwartz possible candidate for Congress

Snowmass Village resident and state Sen. Gail Schwartz is being recruited to challenge U.S. Rep. Scott Tipton in the 2014

election. She has not expressed any commitments or interest about running, but said that “people are looking at all

sorts” of options for recruiting congressional candidates right now. She did leave the door open to the race, however.

The 3rd Congressional District covers most of the Western Slope, making it one of the larger districts in the nation.

Snowmass Village to try roundabout on for size

Snowmass Village plans to experiment with a roundabout this summer at the intersection of Brush Creek and Owl Creek

roads. Traffic in Snowmass Village backs up down Owl Creek Road past the Anderson Ranch Arts Center during high

season. A roundabout is seen as a possible solution to concerns about the mobility of ambulances or fire trucks leaving

the fire house on Owl Creek Road. The temporary structure erected this summer is expected to be replaced with a

permanent roundabout in 2014.

Viceroy units selling at brisk pace

Twenty of 122 residences at the Viceroy Snowmass resort hotel have either been sold or are under contract to sell,

according to Related Colorado. The current closings represent about $5 million in sales volume. Prices have ranged from

$200,000 to $2 million depending on the size of the units, which range from studios to four‐bedroom condominiums.

The units currently sell for a fraction of its pre‐recession price. Before the recession began in 2008, Viceroy residences

were going under contract at between $1,700 and $2,000 per square foot, but all of the contracts were eventually

vacated after the market crashed. Now, they are going for approximately $700 per square foot.

Occupancy up sharply in Snowmass. Aspen's picture not so bright

Occupancy in February in Snowmass Village was 72.6 percent, the highest since 2005 and nearly 20 percent ahead of

February 2012. Aspen's occupancy was down 1.3 percent in February, and was trending slightly up for March. Stay

Aspen Snowmass’s Bill Tomcich expects April to be busy at Snowmass and slow in Aspen.

Dogs allowed on north Rim Trail — but leashes are required

Snowmass Village Town Council agreed to allow dogs on leashes on the north Rim Trail for a temporary period of time.

The restriction is being lifted to test whether residents and the town government can abide by leash laws. Pitkin County

Open Space and Trails has been reluctant to allow a link from the Rim trail to Sky Mountain Park, where dogs are

prohibited. Town Attorney John Dresser suggested a temporary relaxation would allow the council to prove to the

county that the town can enforce a leash restriction.

Basalt —

Town council may loosen housing rules

Four years after the Basalt Town Council voted to toughen its housing‐mitigation regulations, it began a conversation to

ease those rules. In 2009, council voted to require deed restrictions on 35 percent of residential projects, and that

commercial developments include affordable housing for 25 percent of all employees generated. They also left in place a

decade‐old rule that required 100 percent replacement of existing affordable housing that is lost to development.

Local developers and town staff maintain that the restrictions are too onerous, and are stifling development. Town

council directed staff to bring back alternatives to the existing rules.

Basalt’s largest employer is leaving town

Total Merchant Services, Basalt’s largest free‐market employer, will pull out by May 28. The company is consolidating its

operations at its Woodland Hills, Calif., location. The firm employs 140 workers in Basalt. A letter from Total Merchant

Services to the town of Basalt says 123 positions will be eliminated in Basalt and 17 will be relocated.

Starbucks confirms, and new building set for groundbreaking at Willits

Starbucks Coffee confirmed that it will open a shop and drive through in the new Parkside Building at Willits. The store is

expected to open in late spring or early summer. Meanwhile, Willits Town Center developer Mariner Real Estate

Management is finalizing plans on a 60,000‐square ‐foot, three‐story building in a vacant lot near Whole Foods Market.

Pitkin County —

Skico seeks to clear mining claim up title around Pandora’s

The Aspen Skiing Co. filed a “complaint for partition of real property” in Pitkin County District Court last month, seeking

to separate ownership interests of five jointly owned mining claims off Richmond Ridge. The company is the majority

owner of all five claims. The company acknowledged more than a year ago that it would need to clear up title issues

before expanding into the Pandora’s area, extreme skiing near Walsh’s Run that is currently out of bounds.

County uses Wexner money to purchase Prince Creek land

Pitkin County acquired about 10 acres along Prince Creek Road near Carbondale with $675,000 received from Leslie and

Abigale Wexner. The couple, who own the Two Shoes Ranch at the base of Mt. Sopris, donated the money in exchange

for legislative support for their proposed land exchange with the U.S. Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management.

The one‐mile corridor, which varies in width from 30 to 120 feet, will allow the creation of a parking area and off‐road


McLain Flats development may end up paying big check to REMP

A 15,000‐square‐foot home planned on Sunnyside Lane off McLain Flats Road may end up paying $468,947 in energy

mitigation fees to Pitkin County's Renewable Energy Mitigation Program. Such a check is not typical, because most

projects mitigate energy usage with on‐site solar panels or other methods.

Building plans call for 5,994 square feet of snowmelt surfaces, plus a 1,678‐square‐foot outdoor, heated pool and 96‐

square‐foot outdoor spa, amenities that push the residence over its permitted energy budget set in the county building


REMP funds are collected in developments that exceed their energy budget in either the city or county codes. The

money is managed by Community Office for Resource Efficiency (CORE), which offers a range of rebates year‐round to

homeowners and businesses for energy‐efficiency upgrades.

Water rights leasing program eyes deals for Roaring Fork and Crystal

The upper Roaring Fork River and the lower Crystal River are two of 19 sections of river in the state that the Colorado

Water Trust has identified as high priority reaches for its 2013 water leasing program. Both rivers have designated

environmental “in‐stream flow rights” held by the Colorado Water Conservation Board (CWCB), and the Water Trust is

eager to negotiate leases between water rights owners and the CWCB in order to get more water flowing in the river.

A 2003 state law allows water rights owners to lease some or all of their water to the CWCB for environmental purposes

for three out of every ten years, without lowering the “historic consumptive use” calculation — which is the basis for

determining a water right.

Study: Thompson Divide provides support for area economy

Ranching, recreation and other business associated with the Thompson Divide area generate close to 300 jobs and more

than $30 million in annual economic activity, according to a study commissioned by the Thompson Divide Coalition.

Specifically, the report finds:

• Backcountry recreation contributes to 138 jobs and $12.6 million in spending;

• Hunting and fishing support 92 jobs and $8.3 million in spending;

• Grazing and other ranching activities generate $11 million in economic output and 64 jobs.

A handful of energy development companies plan to drill for natural gas in the Thompson Divide region, which contains

more than 221,000 acres of mostly public lands and extends into five counties.

New Aspen Music School/Country Day campus nearly complete

In little more than two months, the sound of drills and hammers will be replaced by chamber music and orchestras as

the joint Castle Creek campus of the Aspen Music Festival and School and Aspen Country Day School. The ambitious $60

million Harry Teague‐designed redevelopment redevelopment of the campus shared by Aspen Music School and Festival

and Aspen Country Day School campus is on time and under budget.

The renovated 23‐acre campus features nearly 44,000 square feet of new buildings, including three surrounding the

great pond. Two are designed as large rehearsal halls for the Music School’s summer programs, and can house a full

orchestra. During the school year, they will be used for Country Day’s visual and performing arts. The third building will

hold classrooms and bathrooms.

Highlands commercial space fully occupied for first time in recent memory

The commercial space in Highlands Village is fully occupied for the first time since the current owner, Eastwood

Developments, took control in November 2007. The firm has continued to invest in the 25,000 square feet of

commercial space, with improvements to the physical plant, adding high‐end fixtures and conference space for

professionals in need of executive offices. The recent addition of an established local law firm to the tenant mix signals

that those investments have paid off.

Commissioners OK 45‐foot tower at new Mountain Rescue facility

The county commissioners approved Mountain Rescue Aspen’s new headquarters near the airport, as well as a 45‐foot

tower that will be used for training. The new 13,900‐square‐foot building will replace the cabin on Main Street that has

been home to the organization since its founding in 1965. The tower, which has been a concern for some

commissioners, will be located on a front corner of the site on Highway 82, at the former Planted Earth Garden Center

site near the Aspen Business Center.

Pavement work at airport will affect private plan parking

Pavement maintenance on virtually all of the surfaces at the Aspen‐Pitkin County Airport during the spring and possibly

the fall off season will result in temporary changes to where aircraft can be parked. Commercial fights won’t be affected.

Regional/statewide —

Proposed law would require disclosure of drilling potential with home sales

A bill in the state legislature that is expected to become law will compel sellers of real estate to disclose all relevant

information about mineral rights associated with a property, including the presence or potential for oil and gas drilling in

the area. The state already requires such disclosures for new homes; this bill, which has bipartisan and industry support,

would extend disclosure to re‐sales.

Missouri Heights retreat proposal withdrawn over neighbor, commissioner opposition

Developers of a retreat on Missouri Heights withdrew their application after it became clear that the Eagle County

commissioners weren’t prepared to support a required zoning change. Alex and Laura Kim were hoping to turn their 47‐

acre residential property into a guest ranch and special event venue that hosts as many as 130 people for up to 36

events a year. Nearly 80 neighbors showed up at the hearing to express opposition.

Real estate market in Garfield County continues to improve

A 7 percent increase this January in dollar volume of real estate sales in Garfield County, to $23,066,900, continues the

trend toward an improving market. The number of transactions also grew relative to 2012, from 71 sales to 86,

according to a monthly report by Land Title Guarantee Company. Carbondale led the county with 21 transactions valued

at $9.7 million, Glenwood Springs followed with 20 valued at $6.6 million, and Rifle had 17 valued at $2.9 million.

Front Range communities begin water restrictions

Denver Water, the largest water utility in the state, announced immediate steps to curb water use for its customers,

limiting lawn watering to two days a week. Fort Collins, Colorado Springs, Aurora and Thornton also plan to limit

watering. Colorado Springs will also charge higher rates to customers who use large amounts of water. The statewide

snowpack is 79 percent of average, and Denver Water's reservoirs haven't been full since July 2011.

Posted by GaryFeldman on April 11, 2013 in

Aspen Sale April 9, 2013

Aspen Sale April 9, 2013

218 Willoughby Way



Three bedrooms/three baths

2,230 sf

Asking price $5,995,000

Sold price per square foot $2,322

86% of asking price

Photo by Gary Feldman

Posted by GaryFeldman on April 10, 2013 in

Spring Snowstorm Provides Best Powder Day of the Season

Spring Snowstorm Provides Best Powder Day of the Season

Reports from around town say that today's spring storm created one of the best powder days of the ski season.

April 9, 2013

Posted by GaryFeldman on April 09, 2013 in

Land Title's February 2013 Pitkin County Market Analysis

Land Title's February 2013 Pitkin County Market Analysis

Please see below for the February 2013 Pitkin County Market Analysis. 

  • $38,389,379 - total dollars for February, a decrease of 15% from February 2012
  • 44 - total transactions for February, a decrease of 4% from February 2012
  • Year to date, dollars total $118,263,217, a decrease of 17% from same period 2012
  • Year to date, transactions total 103, an increase of 2% from same period 2012
  • For the month, Aspen posted 20 transactions ($27.7 million), Interval units 9 ($3.6 million), Snowmass Village 7 ($1.9 million), Basalt 4 ($1.6 million), Old Snowmass 3 ($3.3 million), and Redstone 1 ($245,000).
  • There were 7 bank sales recorded in the county for February totaling $2.2 million.  This accounted for 16% of the transactions and 6% of the dollars (see page 9 for more details)
  • Year to date, there have been 16 bank sales recorded in the county, totaling $9.1 million.  This accounts for 16% of the transactions and 8% of the dollars.  
  • The average single family home sold price thru February is $2,829,605, a decrease of 33% from full year 2012
  • The median single family home sold price thru February is $2,250,000, a decrease of 20% from full year 2012
  • Interval dollar volume for February was down 22% from February 2012, with a total of $3.6 million
  • Interval transaction volume for February was down 25% from February 2012, with a total of 9
  • Interval transaction breakdown for February:  Dancing Bear - 3, St. Regis - 2, Hyatt Grand Aspen - 2, Ritz Carlton Club - 1, and Timbers Club - 1
  • Through February, interval dollar volume totals $7,917,383, an increase of 9% from same period 2012
  • Through February, interval transaction volume totaled 32, an increase of 33% from same period 2012
  • Buyer profile through February:  51% were out of state - domestic, 36% were Local, 12% were International, and 1% Front Range
Posted by User One on April 08, 2013 in

Aspen Sale April 4, 2013

Aspen Sale April 4, 2013

Old Hundred, Unit C-107

900 East Durant



Four bedrooms/three baths

1,349 sf

Asking price $1,200,000

Sold price per square foot $815

92% of asking price

Photo by Gary Feldman

Posted by GaryFeldman on April 08, 2013 in