203 Country Club Road Property Development
Currently, this project is also knows as the "Elk's Club Project" or the Former Elk's Club Property project. A new name for the project is also something we'd love to get feedback on!
In late 2021, the City was approached by a community organization, The Hub, who wanted to put a tennis complex and some other services up at the former Elk's property at 203 Country Club Road. They approached the City about partnership, as the City's Recreation Department offers many of the services they hoped to bring to the property. In discussions, the City realized what an amazing opportunity ownership of the whole lot, over 130 acres of land, would be for the City and its residents! The City very quickly recognized that the whole lot would be able to accommodate way more than just recreation expansion, and pitched to Council a bond proposal to purchase the land.
The City put the following Article forward to the Montpelier Community to vote on at Town Meeting Day 2022 for approval of a bond that will allow the City to slowly pay off the purchase price of the property:
ARTICLE 14. Shall the voters authorize the City Council to borrow a sum of money not to exceed $2,000,000 for the purchase of approximately 138 acres of land, formerly the Elks Club, at 203 Country Club Road? Proceeds from bond funding will be used to finance the purchase of land for potential housing, recreation, and other uses. If approved, bonds for these capital items would be issued for a term of 20 years, is estimated to be approximately $55,000 for the first-year interest payment and approximately $138,406 for the second-year principal and interest payment with future payments declining each year as the principal is repaid.
This was approved by the voters, and work began to finalize the purchase of the former Elk’s Club property, located at 202 Country Club Road. A purchase and sales agreement was signed April 2022 after the City got an appraisal approved by two appraisal experts. Costs of bonds are spread over years, and the City will be looking for further financial support for this project through grants and other funding mechanisms.
The land, as proposed by City Staff and City Council, will be the future sight for a new Recreation Center, Recreation Fields, new Park space, affordable and other housing units, and other concepts. This project is currently in the planning phase, and the City is looking for community feedback and ideas for the property and project.
The Hub group has tangentially been involved in helping the City make plans for what could be co-located at the 203 Country Club property. The Hub is still a separate not-for-profit, and will need to be evaluated by the City as a potential formal partner on this project the same as any other community organization.
Current Work and Updates:
May 2022 Update: Council received an update on the project at their May 25th 2022 Council Meeting. At this meeting, City Council reviewed and approved a funding plan and RFP to seek a consultant or firm to act as a Project Manager to guide the process of master planning the site for redevelopment opportunities. The Approved Draft of the RFP can be found below in the "Project Background Information and Documents" section. A final draft will be listed on the City’s Bid page when it is out for applications. More public feedback sessions will be scheduled when the consultant/firm have been brought on board. Organizations who are interested in being part of the redevelopment options can reach out to the Community Development Specialist in the City’s Planning office at 802-223-9506.
August 2022 Update: The City Council has approved a contractor after a lengthy Request for Proposals (RFP) review, interview, and recommendation process. City Council voted to approve of White & Burke, as the program manager for this project at their August 24th, 2022 Council Meeting. White & Burke will lead the City and the community through a public process to master-plan the 133 acre parcel. Please see White & Burke’s project proposal linked below. The Council also re-reviewed information and asks from the Hub Group at the August 24th, 2022 Council Meeting. Council gave the authority to the City Manager to negotiate a short-term lease with the Hub group for them to rent a portion of the available internal space at the existing building on the 203 Country Club Rd. property. The Hub is interested in offering a restaurant and inside/digital sports to start.
September 2022 Update: City Council asked for more information from White & Burke regarding their plans for public engagement regarding 203 Country Club master-planning. Please see White & Burke’s additional information memo linked below.