SOUTH FORK — Many residents in the South Fork area are aware that property located east of town where Rhythms on the Rio has been held for over 10 years has been sold and that a new RV park is being proposed at the location.
During the South Fork Town Board meeting on Tuesday, May 25, the preliminary plat for the Rio Grande RV Resort and Park was approved, and construction is expected to begin once the final plat is approved. Kurt Carlton and Roland Zimmermann of South Fork Meadows, LLC were the applicants of the project.
Over the past two months, the town has worked with the Planning and Zoning Board to get the paperwork in order. The Planning and Zoning Board signed off on the proposal during its monthly meeting and sent its recommendation, along with two resolutions and an ordinance to allow construction of the RV park, to the South Fork Town Board, which also approved the plat.
Ordinance 2021-03 Additions to the Municipal Code reads as follows, “Ordinance 2021-03 is an ordinance amending the South Fork Municipal Code for the purpose of additions and changes to zoning for recreational vehicles. Whereas the recreational vehicle industry apart with its followers of recreational vehicles and recreational parks and subdivisions throughout the Nation have evolved significantly since the creation of the South Fork Municipal Zoning Code for recreational vehicle parks and subdivisions and whereas the Town of South Fork being funded primarily from retail sales tax from residents and visitors including recreational vehicle owners and the desire to attract recreational vehicle owners by upgrading the Municipal Code and whereas the Municipal Code restricts usage of recreational major subdivisions.”
The ordinance goes on to explain that by allowing major recreational subdivisions with year-round access the change would ultimately benefit the Town of South Fork by bringing in additional revenues and visitors throughout the entire year. South Fork, like many towns throughout the Valley rely heavily on the summer months for generating income to last during the slower parts of the year and throughout the winter.
South Fork has one year-round RV park as of right now, Peacock Meadows which does a fair amount of business during both fall and winter.
The ordinance also allowed for accessory structures to be placed on subdivided lots within the proposed recreational subdivision that would “enhance South Fork as a location for recreational vehicle owners.”
The land on which the proposed RV park will be built has been for sale for many years and the owner graciously allowed its use for other purposes including the Rhythms on the Rio Festival in the past. Though the music festival has been on hiatus due to COVID-19 for the past year and there were plans to cancel the event this summer, many residents and visitors to the area feel that its loss will be a huge hit to the summer economy in South Fork. The South Fork Music Association has not responded to inquiries about what they plan to do next prior to publication.
Ordinance 2021-03 was passed unanimously with no amendments. More details will be reported as they come available.