September 2, 2014 (TELLURIDE, CO) — The Telluride Hospital District (THD) has taken another significant step in the long journey toward building a new regional medical center.
The THD Board of Directors announced a decision in an open work session on Friday to move forward with site negotiations with both the town of Mountain Village and the Lawson Hill Property Owners Company.
The parcels chosen for negotiations include the town hall site in Mountain Village and lots H and I in Lawson Hill.
In making this latest decision, THD board members considered medical center staff evaluations and two independent recommendations to move forward with the Mountain Village and Lawson Hill sites by a Community Advisory Committee (CAC) and Frauenshuh Consulting, a medical site selection-consulting firm.
THD did not eliminate other potential properties but did rank another Lawson Hill property as third best and will continue to review information provided, on August 28, by the Town of Telluride, regarding the RV Lot on the Pearl Property.
The town of Telluride did not submit a site proposal for the RV Lot, a parcel voters deemed developable for public use last November, however THD and the CAC will consider the property based on the town’s presentation of the property’s data.
“Fortunately, we are familiar with the parcel as we have looked at it for the past six years and most of the data are accessible,” said THD Chairperson, Larry Mallard. “If there is enough data verified to make the RV Lot site worthy of consideration, we will ask the Committee [CAC] to compare it to the other two sites.”
THD intends to make an official recommendation regarding the preferred sites at their special board meeting, September 17.
THD received three site proposals from the town of Mountain Village, the Lawson Hill Property Owners Association and Big Dog Holdings, LLC in Lawson Hill earlier this summer after issuing a formal Request for Information (RFI) in March.
At the recommendation of the CAC and Frauenshuh, the Big Dog Holdings, LLC site is not scheduled for additional meetings or consideration, due to zoning restrictions and other obstacles. It could be revisited if other sites are not obtained.
“We’re thrilled to be moving into this next phase fleshing out these two two outstanding site proposals,” said Telluride Medical Center Executive Director Gordon Reichard.
Highlights of the next phase include THD negotiating with the corresponding governments and landowners to determine the true potential of each parcel, funding sources and the risks and approval complexities.
THD is planning another public forum this fall for community discussion about what the rest of the site selection process will entail. “We want the public to be hands on in this process,” said Mallard.
THD expects to announce a final site for a new facility in early December.
The course of identifying a new location for the Telluride Medical Center began in 2006 when THD Board of Directors began actively pursuing options for a new facility.
This past March, THD issued a formal RFI to five regional landowners-the RV lot in the Town of Telluride, two separate lots in Lawson Hill and two separate lots in Mountain Village-and their corresponding private and governmental jurisdictions.
After the June 23 deadline, site proposals were summarized and presented to the CAC-a group chosen by THD to represent unbiased voices from the community, specifically from those with experience in architecture, engineering and construction-to evaluate the proposals and provide feedback on site suitability, cost, fundraising, future growth and risk.
The CAC includes Ron Allred, Bill Atwell, Erik Dalton, Bunny Freidus, Bill Hoins, Dan Tishman, Johnnie Stevens and Jodi Wright.
THD has long maintained that the pressure to find a new site for a regional medical center is two fold: the medical center has outgrown the current facility and the potential locations for a new center are ever dwindling.