Horsetooth property exchanges hands

A 4.8-acre parcel above Horsetooth Reservoir with a checkered financial past has been sold to an owner whose plans are a mystery.

Just up Shoreline Drive from the entrance to the Inlet Bay Marina on Horsetooth sit a small hotel, a gas station and several mobile homes, all of which underwent a forced eviction earlier this year.

Signs on the doors of each building announce that a “court ordered eviction” has been completed and that “any attempt to enter will constitute criminal trespass.”

The Larimer County Sheriff’s Civil Process Unit, which completed the eviction, isn’t saying much for now beyond confirming that the forced eviction was wrapped up in October.

Larimer County records show that the property was valued at just over $1 million.

The property, officially listed in Larimer County property records under the address 4737 Shoreline Drive, was purchased on July 9 by a limited liability corporation called Shoreline Drive 4737.

The address listed for this limited liability corporation is the same one listed for Affordable Bail Bonds, located on Link Lane in Fort Collins. According to records filed with the office of the Colorado Secretary of State, Affordable Bail Bonds is owned by a Blayne Brown.

Brown was unavailable for comment.

Since the purchase, the only contact made with the county about the property was in September, according to Rob Helmick, the county planner who has been watching this parcel for years.

In that instance, an employee of Management Solutions of America, which provides inspection services for a variety of projects, according to its website, requested a “code compliance permit review,” which Helmick said could be thought of as a due diligence document — the sort that a developer typically seeks as they plot out a parcel’s future.

Several possibilities exist for such a property, located on the back side of the reservoir and a short distance from the water. Those possibilities include retail, a hotel or housing.

Whatever may be in store is still unknown. No new plans have been submitted to the county, according to Helmick.

Helmick was on the case back in 2000, when a different limited liability corporation, Inlet Development, submitted a plan for the property to clean out the existing mobile homes and replace them with “park-model RVs,” stationary recreational vehicles that are rented on-site rather than transported to different locations.

These RVs resemble log cabins, Helmick said. The plan was approved by the county and three of the structures were located on the site, but the development collapsed in 2002 in connection with the bankruptcy of Stan Miles, the former owner of a Denver-based real estate company and a convicted bank fraud felon.

Miles filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy in 2004, claiming more than $31 million in debts and less than $2,000 in assets, according to Business Report archives.

In 2001, Miles put a lien on the Inlet Development properties, which made it impossible to get financing for the project, according to another man involved with the project, Chuck Miles, no relation to Stan Miles.

Chuck Miles challenged the lien in court, with the judge ruling in favor of Inlet Development, but by that time, “there was no life left in the business,” Chuck Miles told the Business Report in 2005.

Since then, the property had become a home for squatters — until large trash receptacles appeared outside the mobile homes this fall. They were then filled with the contents of the mobile homes and other buildings and carted away.

Now, the property sits vacant, with only a few pieces of discarded furniture and assorted household items that have yet to be removed hinting at former residents.

Around the back of the abandoned hotel sits a dilapidated sign bearing the words “Horsetooth Marine Resort,” and deer seem quite at home wandering between the empty buildings.

Molly Armbrister covers real estate, banking and health care for the Northern Colorado Business Report. She can be reached at 970-232-3139, marmbrister@ncbr.com or twitter.com/MArmbristerNCBR
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