The Enchanted Mesa Motel is being demolished, making way for a prospective new subdivision.
The Mancos Planning and Zoning Commission unanimously approved a preliminary plat request for a five-lot subdivision at the site during its Sept. 18 meeting. The issue garnered some debate, largely because of the unusual configuration of the plat layout. Ultimately, commissioners decided to grant the request, provided it complies with the town’s land use code.
The town is still waiting on a few documents for the plat and land use code requirements to be met.
The subdivision would be located at 862 Grand Ave., the former site of the Enchanted Mesa Motel. Currently, a house there is being used as a vacation rental, and the owners are planning to construct four more single-family homes on the parcel, said real estate broker Patricia Janz, who co-owns the property.
Two weeks ago, before demolition of the motel, firefighters from local agencies took the opportunity to train using the rooms to simulate working in smoke- and flame-filled buildings.
At the Planning and Zoning meeting, Tim Hunter from Environmental Designs LLC, hired to construct the new homes, presented subdivision plans. Lots 1, 3, 4, and 5 are all situated vertically north-south and front Grand Avenue, with an area of around 9,000 square feet each lot.
But Lot 2, situated at the northwest corner of the parcel along the intersection of Monte Street and Bauer Avenue, is only 7,600 square feet, and would front Monte Street – the only residence with an address along that street.
This could pose some issues, according to officials from the Mancos Volunteer Fire Department and the Public Works Department. Lot 2 doesn’t conform to the design of the surrounding neighborhoods, which have homes that front either Grand Avenue or Bauer Avenue, and the new Monte address will need to be on the radar of emergency responders.
“It’s not an official objection, but they have talked about it – how we need to really make sure that emergency services understand that there will be a new address off of Monte,” said Town Administrator Heather Alvarez at the meeting.
Tony Aspromonte, a neighbor, expressed concerns about Lot 2, pointing out the front address determines front and rear setbacks, which are different from one another. The nonconformity of Lot 2 could throw off the various setbacks in a neighborhood, he said.
“I just feel that in order to maintain conformity in the surrounding area Lot 1 and 2 should be combined and this should only be a 4-lot subdivision instead of 5,” Aspromonte wrote in a letter to Alvarez. He also spoke at the Wednesday night meeting.
Hunter responded that the subdivision meets all setback requirements and that a four-lot subdivision would be difficult financially.
“I know that, that would be a hardship on this development,” he said.
Commissioners approved the preliminary plat, with the conditions that the north side of Lot 2 along Bauer Avenue would have a 25-foot setback, so it is consistent with neighboring homes, and that it meet all final plat requirements before heading to the Mancos Town Board.