Silverthorne City Council has approved the final site plan for the facility of the Silverthorne Early Years Center which will add 65 to 70 child care spaces for county children.
Land for the facility was purchased in October 2020, along with space for a potential grocery store, and it sits on the corner of Adams Avenue and Ruby Ranch Road. Since then, the city has partnered with the Summit County government to move the project forward, including sharing the cost of building the facility. The site is 1.72 acres and will have a single storey building it’s about 8,800 square feet. Current plans include six day care rooms, a small administrative area, a kitchen and a multipurpose room. There are also three separate play areas for the three supervised age groups in the building. The facility will have approximately 20 employees in the building for a maximum shift.
The building will have 23 parking spaces, approximately half of which will be reserved for staff. Council member Tim Applegate said he was worried there would be enough space for the drop off because a long line of cars could back down the freeway, but architect Matt Rodgers said it’s because it is a daycare where some parents should enter the school. with a baby or toddler, backing up traffic probably wouldn’t happen.
“It’s not really like what you might see college kids drop off where the kid goes out,” Rodgers said. “(Parents of daycare students) park there for three to five minutes while they check in on that student, and then they drive off. Throughout the design, we worked closely with other forward-thinking facilities in areas such as Timberline (Learning Center), and they have very similar traffic flow for drop-off situations. .
City Manager Ryan Hyland added that city staff can encourage the facility operator to consider a staggered drop-off approach so that not all children are dropped off at the same time. The building is owned by the Silverthorne Childcare Authority, and town leaders have already begun the process of finding an operator to run the daycare.
There is open space for two more classrooms to the west of the building, should the city and county choose to expand. Council Member Mike Spry said including these two classrooms in the build could allow for more children to be added, as child care is a county-wide issue, but Summit County Manager Scott Vargo said they would save that space for a later addition due to construction costs.
“We’ve had conversations about possibly doing an expansion,” Vargo said. “It’s really a question of timing, first and foremost, and certainly also a question of cost. Secondly, the cost of this facility is more than double what we originally planned. But we tried to create at least the opportunity for these classrooms later.
Along with rising construction and supply costs plaguing projects across the country, the estimated cost of building Smith Ranch Daycare in Silverthorne has also increased. Initial estimates from July 2021 had the total cost of the facility at $4 million. At the time, Summit County and the Town of Silverthorne would split the costs, contributing $3 million and $1 million, respectively. In January, that estimate edged closer to about $8.5 million. Now, the current price for the Smith Ranch facility is $9.7 million.
The updated contribution to Silverthorne Daycare would be $2.35 million. Of this amount, $1.2 million would be the value of the land (which is already provided), $150,000 for site development (which has been completed) and an additional $1 million which would be divided equally between the development fund. capital improvement and nicotine sales or 5A housing funds. . The remaining money to build the facility will be a combination of $3 million from the Strong Futures Fund, $3.41 million from Summit County, and $1 million in grants from the Town of Silverthorne and the county.
The municipal council adopted the final site plan unanimously. A ribbon-cutting ceremony is scheduled for the site at 4 p.m. on June 21.
“It’s been a long-standing desire for this area of the county,” Council Member Kelly Owens said. “It’s really nice to see this happening, and happening soon. It’s very necessary.