ARCHIVED  May 21, 1999

Evans prepares for residential explosion

EVANS — The Evans housing market is bulking up at an astonishing rate, bearing out predictions of a few years back that the city would see the same sort of home-building boom that Greeley has experienced.

Tom Hamblen, Evans’ chief building official, reported that in the first quarter of 1998, the city issued 16 residential building permits, and in 1999, first-quarter permits totaled 49.

“1998 was a record-breaking year, but 1999 is going to be huge,” Hamblen said. “We’ve been issuing permits left and right for these new subdivisions.”

Evans has several new housing developments either in the planning process or under construction.

The Chappelow Village subdivision south of 32nd Street, between 17th and 23rd avenues, has 40 lots to develop, and the builder, Lifestyle Homes out of Greeley, is eager to complete the project, Hamblen said.

The Bay at the Landings is building 60 homes in its first phase of construction. The development, located between 23rd and 29th avenues south of Anchor Drive, has also begun placing the infrastructure for a second phase that will include another 64 homes, and a third phase will start as soon as the second is complete, adding about another 60 homes, Hamblen said.

In addition, 20 12-unit apartment buildings will be built for a total of 240 units. Eight of those buildings are under construction now.

Jim Martin and Bill Neil of Fowler Real Estate are co-developers on an extremely ambitious project at 37th Street and 47th Avenue. The 300-acre development, which hasn’t yet been formally named, is nearly through the approval process, and Martin says it will be unlike anything northern Weld County has seen.

“We’re creating a community within a community,” he said, adding that the development will feature parks, trails and gathering places, and it will be safe for travel by foot or bike.

Overall, project developers are looking at about 900 single-family homes, 300 to 600 multifamily units and a commercial parcel. Homes, including a group of high-end patio homes, will range in price from $130,000 to more than $300,000, Martin said.

“We chose Evans for this development because there’s been a real willingness on the part of the city to work with us, there’s an availability of good land, and more commuters are looking to move there because it’s so accessible,” he said.

The Timberline addition on the east side of town, at Riverside Parkway and 37th Street, will add about 36 homes in the $100,000 range when it’s complete. Hamblen said that about 10 permits have been issued on the project so far.

Two large developments are planned for the area around the intersection of 35th Avenue and 37th Street. Hunter’s Reserve, on the southeast corner of that intersection, is just a corn field right now, but Terra Firma Land Works LLC has begun work on infrastructure that will support a total of 350 homes, to be built in two phases.

“These will be affordable homes in the $100,000 to $125,000 range,´ said Jan Lacefield, co-owner of Terra Firma.

Lacefield said that lots will be ready to go by Sept. 1, and many are already under contract. She estimates that buildout on the project will probably be about two years.

Ashcroft Heights, at the northeast corner of 35th Avenue and 37th Street, has prepared 131 acres for single-family homes and another 43 acres for multifamily development.

The development headed by P.B. Roche Solutions LLC of Greeley, is comprised of approximately 145 patio-home lots ranging in size from 4,500 to 5,000 square feet; 185 lots from 6,000 to 6,500 square feet; and 58 7,500-square-foot and over-sized lots.

The city strongly encouraged the Roche company to include some larger lot sizes to accommodate more-expensive homes, Hamblen said.

“Evans has been recognized as a community of starter homes in the past, and we’re concerned about that image, because as people buy move-up houses — houses in the $200,000 to $300,000 range — we’re losing those folks,” he said. “We’re hoping that some of the developers building here now will address that need for higher-end homes and fill it.”

Hamblen said the Ashcroft Heights development has striking western vistas ideal for higher-priced homes, as does the neighboring Weideman family land.

Harry Weideman and his son Mike own about 400 acres under consideration for development. Evans annexed 143 acres of the land in 1997, zoning it for a combination of multifamily, single-family and commercial development.

Smaller developments in Evans include the land-lease project Cave Creek, in the 4000 block of 35th Avenue. By mid-summer, the site should hold 60 to 100 manufactured homes. A total of 449 homes has been proposed.

Faules Valley is a small development of 15 duplexes sitting at the 1800 block of 37th Street. Seven duplexes are complete, four are under construction and four more will come later. And Centennial Pines at the 1600 block of 37th Street contains 15 lots, four of which have homes going up now.

Valley Village, a project that sits of 37th Street between 17th and 23rd avenues, is another Lifestyle Homes project. Kathie Miner, a broker associate with Re/Max Optimum, is the listing agent for the project, which, with the completion of eight remaining lots, will hold 22 starter homes.

“My understanding is that the city is very easy to work with, and that always helps when it comes to growth,´ said Miner, who is also involved in the Timberline extension project. “Evans has a lot to offer. Greeley is available to residents, they use District 6 schools, and the smaller town has appeal.”

Evans is experiencing a bona fide boom, but Hamblen says the city was prepared for it.

“We saw all the building in West Greeley and figured some of it would come our way,´ said Hamblen, who worked for the city of Greeley for six years before coming to Evans in 1990.

The city entered into an agreement with the directors of the Hill-n-Park Sanitation Lagoons sewage-treatment plant, essentially taking over the site in order to accommodate an influx of people. And as far as water is concerned, Hamblen said that the city owns its own, but it’s treated in Greeley.

“We have an agreement,” Hamblen said. “We own our water, they own theirs, and the line of demarcation both of us have agreed not to cross is along 32nd Street.”

With all the new residential development comes a full complement of commercial building. Several of the city’s residential projects have commercial space rolled in.

Ashcroft Heights has set aside about 22 acres for retail space bordering 35th Avenue, and Roche Solutions has proposed a location to Weld School District 6 for an elementary school.

Hunter’s Reserve has cut a 19-acre swath for commercial development, the Weideman farm proposal calls for nine acres of commercial building, and in the Landings subdivision, 51 acres has been set aside for commercial use.

Jack Meakins, manager of the Evans Area Chamber of Commerce, believes the city is a logical place for more rooftops.

“We’ve got a lot of advantages because we’re closer to DIA [Denver International Airport] than the southern part of Denver,” Meakins said. “The people who live here are fiercely loyal to the community, and we’ve got good services — a good police department, a good fire department — and an attractive rural setting.

“With a projected population of 8,000 by year’s end,” he added, “we’re going to see a lot more building going on.”

EVANS — The Evans housing market is bulking up at an astonishing rate, bearing out predictions of a few years back that the city would see the same sort of home-building boom that Greeley has experienced.

Tom Hamblen, Evans’ chief building official, reported that in the first quarter of 1998, the city issued 16 residential building permits, and in 1999, first-quarter permits totaled 49.

“1998 was a record-breaking year, but 1999 is going to be huge,” Hamblen said. “We’ve been issuing permits left and right for these new subdivisions.”

Evans has several new housing developments either in the planning process or under construction.

The…

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