Crested Butte’s Year in Review Highlights

Crested Butte Mortgage Tips

An Improving Economic Climate in Crested Butte

  • There are many reasons why the real estate market in town and around the north end of the valley has become so robust. Investors are increasingly bullish on Crested Butte and some of the significant factors are highlighted in the Town Manager’s just released 2014 report below. From my perspective, the Town is on a roll. Our tourist economy has improved into a year round affair, sales tax revenues are way up and we seem to be following our plan of action to further enhance our amenity-based tourism industry. Commercial real estate is starting to sell again and residential real estate sales and home values are skyrocketing again. Spec-homes are going up in town and new ski home developments are underway next to the ski resort slopes.

The Highlights

  • Sales tax is over 15% up for the year. The only month that did not break a record was April, but it was close.
  • Our traditional shoulder seasons continue to get busier.
  • September was up over 23% and still counting. In fact, if we were to count one-time sales tax contributions from vendors for Whatever USA, the number would be over 40%.
  • October, very much a traditional shoulder month, was up 27%.
  • The Town hosted Whatever USA, a major event/commercial shoot by Bud Light on Elk Avenue in early September, introducing thousands of people to the upper valley and garnering close to two million dollars in free advertising value around the world and a $500,000 contribution to Town projects. Town projects selected by the Town of Crested Butte and Mt. Crested Butte councils include:
  • $60,000 to complete hard surfacing of the Mountain to Town recreation trail from its southern end at the Slate River to the 8th street greenbelt.
  • $300,000 to expand Big Mine facilities to better accommodate multiple users – particularly hockey and Nordic, which are growing quickly.
  • $140,000 contribution toward a $550,000 project to install utility infrastructure for affordable housing on the NE corner of Town.
  • The Town is preparing to install $550,000 of utility infrastructure for new affordable housing.
  • Separately, the Anthracite place affordable rental project in the heart of town is set to commence construction in 2015. The Town contributed over $400,000 to the project.
  • Replaced the Town tennis courts this fall with state of the art post-tensioned concrete courts. Open in late June/early July 2015 once surfacing is complete.
  • Currently undertaking a transportation plan update to be complete in Spring 2015.
  • Currently initiating the planning process with the guidance of Mundus Bishop to develop a master site plan for the overall Big Mine complex.
  • In summer of 2014, the Town and the Town of Mt. Crested Butte once again hosted a US Pro Challenge stage finish.
  • The Town is involved with a valley-wide visioning and economic integrated strategic planning effort with the county, CBMR, Mt. Crested Butte, the University and numerous other stakeholders to foster more effective collaboration valley-wide.
  • The School district passed a levy returning over two million dollars per year of lost state-level funding to the school district. Crested Butte Community Schools was once again a US News and World Report “Gold Medal School”, falling among the very top schools in the nation.
  • In 2014, the Town was provisionally selected as a Colorado Creative District by the State. This initiates a three-year process to become a creative district, starting with the development of a strategic plan.
  • The Town continued to fund major open space initiatives through its dedicated open space funding. Most recently, pledging $700,000 to potentially protect key acreage at the Snodgrass trailhead – pending successful completion of funding efforts by the Crested Butte Land Trust.
  • The Town hosted an international big mountain enduro mountain bike race in September and is set to host a world championship series event in summer 2015.
  • The Town successfully initiated a composting project at its wastewater plan, turning solids from the waste cycle into useable compost and saving over $40,000/year in hauling and disposal costs.
  • On a less positive note, a parks funding initiative failed by three votes. The initiative would have dedicated a .5% sales tax increase to parks maintenance and projects. This puts most parks projects on hold and reduces some current operations. Parks funding comes out of the Capital Budget as opposed to the General Fund Budget, which is funded by the sales tax referenced above and is not influenced by increasing sales tax revenues as mentioned above.
  • The Center of the Arts has topped six million dollars in fund raising toward a new facility at its current location in the center of town.
  • The Town is in the conceptual review phase of considering a major annexation request NE of Town from Cyprus Equities. Preliminarily, the annexation could add up to 75 residences and several amenities.
  • The Town is in process of completing a several hundred dollar historic renovation of the historic train depot near the center of town with funding from multiple sources.
  • Free bus service through both Mt. Express and the RTA was enhanced in 2014 and for 2015, increasing free public transportation option to/from CB South and to/from Gunnison.
  • The Town is working with Region 10 on a DOLA grant to identify options to bring enhanced broadband to the upper valley.
  • Several trails initiatives were advanced in 2014, including Baxter Gulch and the Deli Trail.
  • The Town is funding a three-year project in 2015 to enhance way finding on town trails.
  • CB Nordic continues to expand its visitor-ship exponentially and is continuing to expand as an economic driver in the upper valley.

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