Town News

Catchup with Council, September 8, 2020 – Love Frisco/Shop Frisco Update, Sustainability Programs Update, Board of Appeals Appointments, Unified Development Code, Conduit on West Main, COVID-19 Response

Love Frisco, Shop/Stay Frisco Update:

With bonus e-gift cards issued by the Town set to expire on September 15, 2020, Council directed staff at their August 25 meeting to research options that would allow gift card holders to donate the remaining balances on their cards to a local non-profit. Staff found that Building Hope Summit County has the capability to accept the Love Frisco e-gift cards and  has been invaluable to this community during this pandemic. Building Hope have indicated that they have not had the resources to dedicate to fundraising  due to an increased need for their services. Additionally, the annual Frisco/Copper Creek Mayor’s Cup golf tournament that was set to benefit Building Hope in September had to be cancelled, further depleting fundraising opportunities. Council approved for staff to work with Building Hope to accept Love Frisco, Shop/Stay Frisco gift card donations.

Agenda Item #1:   Eagle Scout Project Proposal Presentation

Council approved a proposal by a local aspiring Eagle Scout, Roan Varble, to install a commemorative sign at the Frisco Nordic Center that honors world-class Nordic athletes who train or have trained in Summit County, and that will inspire current Nordic athletes. Varble also plans to complete an activity to improve the exterior of the Frisco Nordic Center as part of this project.

Board of Appeals Interviews and Appointment

Chapter 4 of the Town Code states that the Town Council is required to appoint three members to the Board of Appeals (BOA).

  • The BOA serves three-year terms.
  • The BOA hears and decides appeals, and reviews any order, requirement, decision, or determination made by any administrative official charged with the administration or enforcement of the building construction standards in the Town Building Codes. 
  • The BOA can, and is encouraged to advise on code adoptions and amendments.

Staff advertised and reviewed three applications for the three BOA vacancies. Each of the three candidates meets the requirements to be a member of the BOA as listed in the Town Code. Council interviewed and appointed Pete Campbell, Dan McCrerey, and Collette Smith to the Board of Appeals.

High Country Conservation Center Programs Update

Beyond what Town employees are able to achieve in climate, environment, and sustainability initiatives, High Country Conservation Center (HC3) provides key deliverables for the Town on climate action. HC3 presented their achievements and plans for 2021 in the areas of:

Climate Action:

  • Sustainable building codes
  • Benchmarking pilot program with Town of Frisco buildings
  • Builder workshops on new sustainability codes and energy efficient building
  • Electronic vehicle (EV) Readiness Planning
  • Solarize Summit

Energy Smart Colorado:

  • Home energy assessments
  • Home energy retrofits
  • Quick-fix installations

Resource Wise:

  • Sustainable business certification program that helps businesses reduce energy use, carbon emissions, and waste while improving recycling, composting, and purchasing practices

Looking Ahead – HC3 is planning:

  • Continued in-person business outreach
  • EV readiness planning
  • Outdoor energy policy
  • Benchmarking study
  • Online workshops and events

Quarterly Environmental Programs Update

The Town Council has made commitments to the environment and the development of sustainable practices an ongoing priority. To ensure that Town staff can address each priority properly, a two-pillared framework for program creation and implementation was introduced; the first pillar being “Net Zero”, the second being “Stewardship”. Progress is being made on strategies outlined in the Frisco Community Plan, and Town staff, with the support of various partnerships, have achieved the milestones set forth in the 2019-2020 Town Council Strategic Plan. Environmental programs continue to be beneficial to the Town’s finances by reducing energy use and associated costs, and by receiving grant funding.

Unified Development Code Changes to Support Sustainable Building Code Revisions and a More Sustainable Land Use Code Update

Staff gave a presentation on potential Unified Development Code (UDC) updates for Council’s consideration. The Code amendments are being proposed in order to support Town Council’s Strategic Plan goals related to implementing the Climate Action Plan and Water Efficiency Plan. The intent is that these updates will bring better consistency between the Sustainable Building Code update, adopted in April, and the land use code. These updates will also add another layer of sustainability to the land use code.

After hearing an initial presentation on the Sustainable Land Use Code changes in June 9, 2020, Council directed staff to reach out to the development community to gain their insight on the impacts of the potential code amendments. The topics include transportation, water efficiency and quality, waste diversion, and solar readiness. The proposed amendments range from new incentives for EV charging infrastructure, bicycle storage requirements for multi-family development, more detailed water protection standards, enhanced waste enclosure and recycling requirements, and reducing regulations for solar facilities.

Town Council directed staff to move forward with the revisions to the Sustainable Land Use Code. After incorporating Town Council’s responses, staff will proceed with drafting code language to present to the Planning Commission for further review. Following a recommendation from the Planning Commission, the Code Amendments will be set for Town Council hearings to consider adoption.

West Main Conduit Discussion and Direction

Council approved the installation of conduit for fiber optic lines from Town Hall to the west end of Main St. by the Summit Daily building. In accordance with the Town’s “Dig Once” Ordinance # 20-02, staff received an estimate of $60,000 for the Town to install 2000 feet of two 2-inch conduits while Comcast installs their lines. If the Town were to install the same conduit as a stand-alone project, the cost was estimated to be $120,000- $150,000

The $60,000 was not budgeted for in the 2020 Budget, and hence, there is no identified budget for this type of work, so Town Council directed staff to pull $60,000 from the Capital Improvements Fund. Town Council is committed to taking advantage of these opportunities to lay conduit to house fiber to make immediate strides to lay the foundation for a better communications/internet infrastructure for the future. Council approved the creation of a new line item in the Capital Improvements Fund for future “Dig Once” projects as they arise.

General COVID-19 Discussion

Council and staff are waiting for updates on relief funding and programs at the Federal and State level, and for the ski areas to release their official, approved, winter operations plans before moving forward.

While the decision has been made and reaffirmed to leave the Frisco Pedestrian Promenade up until the end of September, Council and staff are monitoring weather, business levels, and feedback from business to make the decision about closing the Promenade.

Given the overall success of the Promenade, Council discussed remaining open to the possibility of hosting the Promenade in future summers, based on need and feedback from businesses.