Mountain Area Master Plan
A Vision for Our Mountain Area
The purpose of the Mountain Area Master Plan (MAMP) is to engage the Steamboat Springs community in developing a community vision for the future of the Mountain Area and to complete a plan to guide policy, development, and public/private investment toward achieving the vision.
The City has partnered with a consultant team led by Cushing Terrell and Connect One Design to develop the master plan, which is scheduled for completion in April 2021.
- Engage the community in creating a vision for the future of the Mountain Area
- Develop a plan that enhances the sense of place while complementing the city-wide context and building on the goals of other community plans
- Result in an actionable implementation strategy, which is both aspirational and feasible, and is adaptable to changing future conditions
- Provide guidance to inform City standards and policies and future improvements and developments in the Mountain Area
- Facilitate meaningful collaboration between the public, key stakeholders, and the City government.
The plan’s study area is the Steamboat Ski & Resort Corporation (Ski Resort) base area and the commercial properties and residential neighborhoods that surround it. The Mountain Area includes the land within the Urban Redevelopment Authority boundary to the east of US Highway 40 and within the Resort Residential (RR-1 and RR-2) and Gondola (G-1 and G-2) zone districts.
This plan is focused on improving character and identity, economic vitality, and mobility and connectivity in the Mountain Area. Other important elements to address include arts, culture, and heritage; open space and recreation; and housing.
The MAMP will recommend conceptual plans for the redesign of two specific sites: the Gondola Transit Center and Ski Time Square Drive. The conceptual plans will illustrate a preferred scenario for the redevelopment of each site that includes roadway configurations, pedestrian facilities, design elements, and other major improvements. The plan will provide guidance on policies and actions necessary to implement the redevelopment of these sites.
Two guiding principles represent our community values and are fundamental to proactively planning for the long-term vitality and quality of life in the Mountain Area.
- Sustainability and Resiliency – The plan’s goals and policies will improve the social, economic, and environmental sustainability of the Mountain Area and the greater Steamboat Springs community and will enhance community resilience in the face of changing future conditions and disruptions.
- Visitor Experience – The Mountain Area is the home of the Ski Resort and the focal point for tourist activity. This area houses the majority of resort lodging accommodations and second homes. Strategies to preserve and enhance the visitor experience and to continue to draw people to the Mountain Area and Steamboat Springs will be integrated throughout the planning elements.
The last master plan for the Mountain Area was adopted in 2005. Steamboat Springs has experienced significant change in the last 15 years in terms of economy, technology, population, climate, and more. Over the last decade, the Mountain Area has experienced limited redevelopment and private investment. However, more recently there has been a change in ownership of the Ski Resort and several significant development approvals. This increased development pressure has highlighted challenges with the current zoning, development, and design standards applicable to the Mountain Area. It’s time to update our vision for this core commercial area to better reflect current conditions, trends, and community priorities.
In April 2019, the Steamboat Springs Downtown Plan was adopted to define the vision and goals for the Downtown and to provide action strategies to guide the Plan’s implementation. With the adoption of a new Mountain Area Master Plan, the community will have two sub-area plans to guide public and private decision making and investment to achieve the long-term vision and create synergy between these two core commercial areas.
Julie Baxter, AICP, CFM
City of Steamboat Springs