Lyons trustees hear plan for Main Street boutique hotel on Monday

Editor’s note: This story was updated to include public comments about the proposed project.

Lyons Board of Trustees on Monday night weighed the pros and cons of what a 79-room hotel on Main Street may look like while listening to a presentation from a Colorado development company.

“The hotel belongs downtown — not at the fringe of the town,” said Edna Johnson with development company Moss Rock Development LLC.

Presentations about on the potential hotel lasted more than an hour Monday night. A decision about the plan by the trustees had not occurred by 11 pm Monday.

The three-story hotel has been a hot topic in the town for several months after it was first introduced to the community in November. The hotel will include a lobby, bar, cafe, rooftop terrace bar with indoor and outdoor dining. The developers have already purchased parcels 343, 349 and 355 Main St. for the hotel.

“The town of Lyons has wanted and needed a hotel for a long time, especially since we have five wedding venues now and regular festivals,” said Town Administrator Victoria Simonsen before the meeting Monday. “Most of those people come and go stay overnight in Boulder.”

Craig Ferguson, Planet Bluegrass president, sold the property to Moss Rock Development LLC, the entity that will be developing the hotel. Ferguson purchased the property about 20 years ago, with a few other business owners, but became the sole owner about 10 years ago.

During previous discussions on the hotel, residents expressed excitement because of the need for additional lodging while others have shared concerns regarding the size of the hotel and lack of parking in the city.

“I think for the most part everybody would love to see a hotel in Lyons,” Simonsen said. “I think it was just kind of a shock when they saw the size.”

The plan proposes 25 on-site spaces, 24 off-site spaces, 30 off-site on-street spaces and five handicapped-accessible parking spaces.

On-site parking will be on the east side of the hotel, near the courtyard. The developers are asking to use a town parking lot across the street from the fire station for off-street parking. Additional off-site spaces may be used on Fourth Avenue and Broadway.

Mayor Pro Tem Mark Browning said the No. 1 issue for him was parking. He asked why the town’s code requires off-street parking be place within 700 feet of the building it serves and wondered whether it would alleviate parking problems for the town if the code was changed.

“I think it may behoove the town of Lyons to look at whether we have to modify that code,” he said.

Lyons resident Roger Flynn spoke out against the proposal Monday night saying it needs to be reviewed and discussed more, not rushed.

“The town should not have to change everything and hope we can adapt to fit the company’s needs,” he said.

Michael Yeager, owner of The Upholstery Shop in Lyons, said his workers use two of the parking spots during work that the hotel is proposing to use for its guests and employees. He has asked the town to consider using other spots so his business is not affected.

“They have my support in concept,” he said. “I need that parking and would urge the (town) to consider that it would impact my business and my ability to conduct my business in town.”

Parker Johnson put full support behind the hotel proposal Monday night. He said the town has time to figure out its parking problem before the hotel is built.

“We owe it to these people to get creative and get behind them to figure out how to make this happen as a community service project on all of our behalf,” he said.

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