Oprah Proposes Reasonable Subdivision of Her 60-Acre Mountain Village Parcel

I read the recent application by Oprah to subdivide her 60-acre property she purchased in Mountain Village. Her property was once part of a U.S. Forest Service land exchange that deeded four large parcels to the Mountain Village in the early 1990s. Her parcels are held in the Yellow Brick Road, LLC (YBR). She is proposing to cluster her current development rights of two single family homes, two accessory dwelling units and accessory structures by resubdividing them to include five open space parcels, one access tract and the two home sites mentioned above.

The five open space parcels are split into two Active Open Space parcels and three Passive Open Space parcels. One of the AOS parcels will include a workforce housing unit ultimately to be used for an on-site local property manager. The other AOS parcel proposes a private equestrian stable which is practically a use by right. The three Passive Open Space parcels will remain in a natural state.

The development will be clustered on 15.63 acres (26%) of the 60 acres owned by YBR and will be located in the southeast portion of the property. One private road (1.9 acres) will access the two properties. The five open space parcels will be 42 acres (71%). There will be fewer corridors for shared utilities. The forested areas will have a fire mitigation plan (clear debris, remove standing dead & hazard trees, enhance forest health) that will improve fire safety in a critical area of Mountain Village.

Construction of the access road and bridge is proposed to start this spring. Another bridge from the property is already constructed and is a 180-foot three-span steel girder bridge spanning wetlands and the Marmot ski run. Fortenberry & Ricks Construction of Telluride are building the project.

Oprah Proposes Reasonable Subdivision - Mountain Village

In this instance, I believe the proposal to rezone and resubdivide her property is beneficial to the Mountain Village. Trail and access easements have been clarified and secured between YBR and the Telluride Ski Ranches, which borders a portion of her property. Based on the current proposal, I would be surprised if there is any major, serious contention of her project. The ski company might not be pleased with her proposal to eliminate the 16-foot general easements and replace them with 16-foot setbacks but I find limited flaws in this plan. Contact me if you’d like a copy of YBR’s application emailed to you.

Mike Shimkonis

After growing up surfing in Florida, Mike Shimkonis decided to give higher ground a try and settled in Colorado over 25 years ago, first in Vail, then moving to Telluride in 1993. Prior to working with Telluride Properties, he was a senior sales and marketing executive for the Vail and Telluride ski companies.

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