Town Board anticipates South Fork projects

File Photo by Patrick Shea South Fork Planning Commission board members conducted a preliminary hearing on Jan. 16 for a new riverside lodging concept, and the couple behind the project responded by knocking off checklist items and applying for a conditional use permit for discussion at an official public hearing during the next Planning Commission meeting on March 20.

SOUTH FORK — South Fork residents can update their calendars for must-attend meetings on March 12 and 20, according to South Fork Town Administrator Dan Hicks. The next town board meeting date has been changed to coincide with the board’s working session and a ceremonial ribbon-cutting at the South Fork Visitors Center at 6 p.m. on Tuesday, March 12.
Only one tasks remains to complete the South Fork Visitor Center renovation before the celebration on March 12. Two enormous images show the region in winter and summer, but the winter image requires reworking in Denver before it can be installed.
Compared to February 2019, South Fork Visitor Center visits are up 78 percent. The active renovation project did not deter people from stopping in for information, usually to plan their next activity. The theme of the visitor center— Your Basecamp for Adventure— is equally practical for people heading deeper into the wilderness. In addition to informative maps and pictures, the renovated center will include comfortable furniture, new lighting and other changes visitors can see today and learn more about on March 12.
On Wednesday, March 20, the South Fork Planning Commission will conduct a public hearing for a conditional use permit to provide overnight camping on a stretch of the Rio Grande in town. Planning board members witnessed a presentation during a preliminary hearing at Carnegie Hall on Jan. 16 and made a few suggestions for next steps. Dan and Melissa Jones, the couple who dreamt up the project, committed the energy and resources to talk with neighbors and fulfill other preliminary requirements.

The design includes rustic amenities, and each camper site on the proposed stretch of the river will have a private bath and fire pit and covering, ultimately offering WiFi and BBQ for each unit too.
Also addressed during the meeting, board members renewed liquor licenses for Rockaway Cafe and Steak House, Arbor House Inn Bed & Breakfast on the River and Ramon’s Mexican Restaurant.
In addition, the board approved the 2019 fee schedule to cover costs for making copies of documents, processing land use application fees, issuing permits for projects and other administrative functions.
The next meeting for board members and the public will be moved from the Carnegie Library to the South Fork Visitors Center on March 12, starting at 6 p.m.

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