Vail Daily

Riverfront Townhomes


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The Riverfront Townhomes in Avon feature views, solitude, a riverfront location and access to some of the valley's finest amenities.

Thoughtful development doesn't happen to a community, it creates a community.

When commercial and residential buildings are meticulously designed, communities are able to grow and thrive. East West Partners is once again behind such a project in Avon, this time delivering 13 beautiful mountain residences just west of the Westin Riverfront Resort. The Riverfront Townhomes will add yet another link within Avon's increasingly walkable community, including easy access for residents to Beaver Creek via the Westin Riverfront Gondola.

With a team of local partners including architect Zehren & Associates, Evans Chaffee Construction Group, and Alpine Bank in Avon as the construction lender, the project has become a true labor of love by professionals who also call this community home.

"This was a somewhat forgotten parcel for a number of years during the economic downturn. For us to be able to now develop it is really exciting because we feel it is a unique site," said Jim Telling, Managing Partner at East West Partners. "It's southern facing and offers this rare connection to the river. Residents will have access to all of the amenities at the Westin and it's walkable to town. For us, this is the opportunity to create some really fun lifestyles for people."

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East West Partners hasn't launched a new residential project in the Vail Valley in more than a decade. When the firm takes on a new project, it's particular about developing on sites that are unique places to live in and enjoy, Telling said.

"We're all about trying to design a lifestyle and wonderful places to live, in a sustainable manner that makes sense for everyone," he said.

East West Partners and Zehren & Associates began master planning the Riverfront developments back in 2004. Telling said the plans initially called for higher density, but 2018 is a much different time. Once fully built out, the property to the west of the Westin will include the Riverfront Townhomes, as well as three single-family homes, about half-a-dozen more townhomes, and a 36-unit condo building between the townhomes and the Westin.

"When we looked at it with fresh eyes about a year ago, we saw that what was originally planned was not the right product," Telling said. "It was zoned for more than 100 units, but we'll end up with a total in the mid 50s. We think that's the right market for today's environment."

Principal Architect David Kaselak, of Zehren & Associates, said the Riverfront Townhomes represent the continuation of successful planning, which includes responding to today's world.

"We felt it important to create a comfortable scale and massing for the project, since we all consider it a continuation of the Westin campus," Kaselak said.

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Both East West Partners and Zehren & Associates are consistently building in environments that include beautiful natural surroundings such as mountain-resort and coastal destinations. With its prime riverfront location, both firms knew the natural surroundings would be one of the main attractions of this development.

Our firm relishes projects where sensitivity to the site is paramount. This often leads us to mountain or coastal environments, near or within resort neighborhoods," Kaselak said. "This informs our design philosophy, which includes "designing from the inside out" and taking maximum advantage of outdoor spaces by bringing the outdoors in.  Our designs react to the site and natural forces around the project, and hopefully reinforce them."

The Riverfront Townhomes feature a strong tie to nature and the outdoor lifestyle, with amazing views to Beaver Creek, convenient access to the recreation path and the Eagle river, and a short walk to the Riverfront gondola in winter, Kaselak added.

"We are also striving for LEED Gold certification, incorporating the latest innovations in green design," he said.

In addition to being a good neighbor to the natural environment, Kaselak and Telling said it was equally important to be a good neighbor to existing development in the area.

"The new project steps down in size from the Westin hotel to the western edge of the property.  The exterior materials were treated the same way — they don't mimic the materials used on the hotel, but they complement them nicely so there's an overall visual harmony to the neighborhood," Kaselak said. "It was a joy to work on the site plan, because none of us were trying to maximize density, which often leads to uncomfortable massing and scale."