Preliminary steps for Phase 1 of village underway
By Karen Lorentz
KILLINGTON—With a December 2016 mediation process leading to the settlement of some complex issues, including an old lawsuit, the appeals to SP Land Company’s Act 250 permit for a village at Killington have been successfully dropped and village progress is being made.
SP Land received a revised Phase I Village permit in January 2017 with its attendant appeal period ending in February. A final settlement with original permit appellant Steve Durkee was completed in March with a land swap and other matters successfully negotiated, SP Land President Steven Selbo told the Mountain Times. The Phase I design for the Village Master Plan is moving ahead, Selbo said, noting there were no changes needed to the plan and it was not affected by the agreement.
Since March, SP Land has moved forward on several fronts with two required studies (attached to Act 250 permit conditions) and village work, including the name Six Peaks Killington, village logo design, and a website. The website,livekillington.com, includes the new summer view of the village green as well as a winter sunset skier view. Project architect Hart Howerton did the renderings.
Colorful new banners, which are already up at Snowshed and at the Snowshed Pond Umbrella Bar site, display the summer scene and include the website. The banners were designed by the father-and-son McGuire Marketing team, working out of Vermont and Miami. Selbo said he has already had a good response regarding the village and requests for future information via the website’s contact section.
Meeting permit conditions
Selbo said UVM’s Consulting Archeological Program made an in-depth review of archeological matters — required by the Vermont Department of Historic Preservation as a condition to the resort’s parking project permit. The project included digging test pits every 10 meters along Roaring Brook to check for any Native American artifacts. While Selbo hasn’t received a final report, he was informed that none were found, he said.
The consultants also made an investigation of a steam-powered sawmill site that operated in the early 1900s when logging was conducted on the mountain and surrounding areas. Selbo said he was told that no further investigations beyond the proper description recordings made by the UVM team are likely to be required by Historic Preservation.
Another condition to the resort’s parking project and SP Land’s permit concerns a wetlands permit that was received five years ago and that expires this year. Engineers are currently resurveying and records are being made to enable the state to extend the permit, Selbo noted.
Noting that the village design was done in 2011, Selbo said that since that time he has had preliminary meetings with various contractors regarding site work and building construction. They have pointed out various cost-saving items and different ways of handling construction costs as well as new best practices, he said.
Asked about next steps, Selbo said that a stormwater pond is required for the parking project and that in turn requires a winter removal of trees before stumping and pond construction can occur. This pond would be built on the northern portion of the 90-acre site, which has resort and Phase I land. A timeline for this project is dependent upon finding a partner, a project Selbo is also currently working on.
Six Peaks Killington
The new Six Peaks Killington village will be located on 303 acres in the heart of the resort. World-renowned architects/planners Hart Howerton of New York and San Francisco designed the master plan for SP Land. The permitted Phase I allows for: close to 200 residential units with underground parking in three-to-five story buildings; 30,000 square feet of new retail space; a new skier services lodge (replacing Snowshed and Ramshead lodges); and a village green and ski plaza. Phase I also includes offering single family and duplex home sites with ski-in, ski-out access at the nearby Ramshead Brook proposed development (as part of the 248 total units permitted in Phase I).
It is anticipated that at village buildout, there could be more than 1,900 residences consisting of a mix of condominiums, townhomes, duplexes, and single-family homes as well as a vibrant main street lined with shops, restaurants, pubs, hotels and pedestrian area in the village core, Selbo said.
Slow, steady progress
SP Land filed an Act 250 application for a Killington Village master plan in Feb. 2012. A second application was filed by Killington Resort for a new resort parking project (new parking area to replace the Snowshed lots, which will be lost to the village), which also includes a realignment of part of Killington Road, reconfiguration of the hotel parking lot, and associated stormwater treatment (including the pond mentioned above). A 61-page permit decision was handed down Oct. 7, 2013.
The Superior Court’s environmental division rendered a June 21, 2016, merits decision and judgment order affirming the District #1 Environmental Commission’s 2013 permit subject to conditions that SP Land could live with. A July 2016 motion to alter that led to an Aug. 29 amended judgment order that was being appealed to the state Supreme Court when the December 2016 agreement finally allowed Village progress.
Photo by Hart Howerton
Rendering of the new Killington Village plan called “Six Peaks Killington” looking up to the peak.