Council approves right-of-way purchases for State Park Road construction

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Whitefish City Council on May 6 approved a resolution allowing for the purchase of right of way associated with the reconstruction of State Park Road.

Council approved spending an estimated $455,000 for land acquisition. The figure is about $45,000 below what has been budgeted for that piece of the project.

The roadway is being reconstructed from Lion Mountain Loop Road to the BNSF railway crossing.

Phase II construction is scheduled for spring and fall of 2020 to run from Haugen Heights Road north to just before the railroad crossing.

Public Works Director Craig Workman said the existing right of way in Phase II is inconsistent and narrow, and in order for the design of the road to continue throughout the roadway it is necessary for the city to acquire significant right of way.

Work includes efforts to improve the two 90-degree curves that are part of the current roadway.

The design for the roadway calls for a road with curb and gutters at a width of 32 feet, along with a 6-foot boulevard on the west side and 8-foot path also on the west side.

Phase 1 of the project is set to begin this summer and includes the section of the road from Lion Mountain Loop Road to Haugen Heights Road.

The State Park Road project is being paid for with resort tax funds. The total project budget is $5.3 million.

City Council on May 6 also:

• Approved a request by Whitefish Hotel Group for a conditional use permit to expand the footprint of the Firebrand Hotel by 588 square feet. The hotel is looking to enclose the outside seating patio area located along East Second Street.

The area would be enclosed and heated with access via west facing door to the outside and through the existing dining area in the hotel.

The hotel says the outside patio area is under-utilized as it is north facing, so it plans to re-purpose the space to create a large dining area.

The existing roof would be extended to enclose the area and windows would be added above the existing stone wall. The final design would have to obtain approval from the Architectural Review Committee.

A CUP for the hotel was first approved in 2015 as a requirement for buildings with a footprint that exceed 7,500 square feet.

• Approved a preliminary plat for Sage Partners for a five-lot subdivision at 415 1/2 Colorado Avenue. The 1.74 acre property would contain single-family lots that would be accessed from an internal privately maintained road access from Colorado Avenue.

• Approved a conditional use permit and preliminary plat for I02.5, LLC or a nine-lot attached single family development consisting of three two-unit townhomes and one three-unit townhome on 2.5 acres. The project known as Under the Crescent Moon is located at 2041 River Lakes Parkway.

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