Whitewater Run development would transform river frontage
Currents of change on Yampa Street
By Tom Ross (Contact)
Sunday, July 13, 2008
Steamboat Springs — Principals in Riverfront Partners LLC have formally announced their purchase of the Yacht Club restaurant building and attached open space, plus the steel building on Yampa Street housing Backdoor Sports.
The intent is to refurbish and keep the Yacht Club operating as a restaurant. However, there are new development plans on the site.
“Approximately 20,000 square feet of the site will be redeveloped into a mixed-use project with retail at the first level and residential on the upper floors,” Ellen Fauss said. “In addition, the owners expect to work closely with the city and the fishing and kayaking communities to further improve some of the riparian areas of the riverfront.”
Fauss is associated with R.L. Fauss, a construction contractor that has headquarters in Fremont, Neb. The company has built public schools, convenience stores, apartment buildings and hotels.
Morton and Ellen Hoj of the Yacht Club previously confirmed to the Steamboat Pilot & Today their plans to open a new restaurant, The Diplomat, two blocks away in The Victoria, nearing completion at 10th Street and Lincoln Avenue. The Yacht Club continues to serve lunch and dinner this summer.
“Riverfront is courting several prospective operators to assure a smooth transition,” Fauss said about the future of the restaurant.
Peter Van De Carr of Backdoor Sports said although he would prefer to remain in his current location, he has an option to move a short distance down Yampa Street to 655 Yampa, another riverfront development project. It would replace a large white house on the site.
The building that houses Backdoor Sports was at one time a diesel repair shop; it is adjacent to a city parking lot and the foot bridge over the Yampa River.
The transformation of Yampa Street goes further. The project known as 751 Yampa would replace three small buildings including the Colorado Group Realty sales center, Hell’s Wall sporting goods and the building that houses Sweet Pea Produce and Sunpie’s Bistro. Both businesses previously have confirmed they are looking at other sites.
Whitewater Run would occupy a large green lawn and a private parking lot between the Yacht Club and Backdoor Sports. Conceptual drawings for the new building show a three-story elevation along the river with gabled roofs breaking up the mass of the buildings. Another prominent feature is a pedestrian pass-through open to the air and leading through the building to the riverfront.
Coleman Cook of Colorado Group Realty will market the project. The architect is Eric Smith Associates.
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