Berthoud Common property nears sale

By Rudy Hemmann
The Surveyor

At Tuesday evening’s regular business meeting, the Berthoud Board of Trustees took the first step in the process to sell a tract known locally as Berthoud Common. The property, which is located west of Eighth Street between Welch Avenue and the Berthoud High School property, has long been considered surplus by town staff.

According to an information sheet concerning the issue, staff was directed by the board to enter into an agreement with Loveland Commercial, LLC to assist the town in the sale. Nathen Klein of Loveland Commercial represented the town and carried on negotiations with various interested parties. Five of the parties made offers, two of which were considered to be inadequate since they did not meet the $700,000 asking price.

Klein revealed the offer which he was presenting to the board was from the Thompson School District. According to Klein the school district offer was the best of the three because it was a cash offer, because it will be a quicker closing, and the offer is for $705,000, which is $5,000 more than the asking price.

The board members expressed delight at the prospect of the school district being the owner of the property and lauded Klein for his efforts in bringing the deal about.

A motion to accept the school district offer was made, seconded and approved unanimously.

The Thompson School Board must also approve the purchase of the property before the transaction can be completed.

The district hopes to acquire the tract for future expansion of their high school facility which is adjacent to and immediately south of the property.

In related news, the board approved the annexation of a tract referred to as the Hoime development. Alex Hoime, the owner/developer of a property at 824 Larimer County Rd. (LCR) 10E, has petitioned the town for annexation of the tract at that street address.

According to the planning staff report, the property, which measures just under five acres, is located immediately north of LCR 10E between LCR 17 and North Fourth Street. (The western boundary of the property is approximately 1,220 feet east of LCR 17.)

Sherry Albertson-Clark brought the matter before the board and stated the annexation needed to be done as a serial annexation because there was insufficient contiguity with LCR 10E to bring the entire tract in under one annexation.

State statute requires 1/6 of the perimeter of a property be contiguous with the annexing municipality. The southern border of the property, which abuts LCR 10E, fell short of that requirement. The solution to the issue was to accomplish the annexation in a series of two annexations.

Albertson-Clark also informed the board that, due to an oversight on her part which delayed publishing the required notices, the board would not be taking action on the zoning of the property or on Hoime’s concept plan for the tract. That action was rescheduled to the June 9 board meeting.

Trustee Paul Alaback questioned why the board was being asked to consider the annexation without the concept plan or zoning request.

“The packet is somewhat confusing to me,” said Alaback, “I’m not sure why this (item) is before us today. It seems we always consider the planning and zoning at once, and there is an advantage to doing that because then we know what we are doing … I’m just wondering why we are discussing this (annexation) right now – why not discuss this in June?”

He was answered by Town Attorney Greg Bell who informed Alaback once the annexation notice is published there is little flexibility on when the annexation may be accomplished. Bell explained the public notice opens a window which soon closes.

In other action during the evening the trustees unanimously approved town staff’s recommendation directing the town administrator to sign an intergovernmental agreement with the City of Fort Collins for the 2015 FLEX bus service. The agreement states the town will pay $10,000 to fund the town’s inclusion in the agreement.

The trustees approved a motion directing Hart to sign participation agreements for infrastructure improvements for wastewater and raw water services at the “I-25 subarea.” Hart would sign agreements with Love’s Travel Stops & Country Stores, Inc. and representatives of the Wilson Ranch development, as long as there were no substantive changes to the documents presented to the board.

The board unanimously approved what amounted to minor amendments to the Berthoud Heritage Metropolitan Districts. The changes were made in conjunction with the town’s backing.