There are several moving parts of the process of building our glampsites. if all goes as planned, we’ll be operational by this summer.
There are several people involved in the development of our property. Of course there are several family members, primarily the two of us (the land owners), but also our adult sons and their families. We also have a developer friend of ours who knows the ins and outs of developing a site plan in real time. We also hired a lawyer — actually a neighbor who lives down the creek — who is enthusiastic for the development of Monument Glamping and believes it will bring added value to the county. There are other neighbors, too, who are helping out.
But like any serious project there are several steps to take before we raise any tents. Here they are in summary.
We are submitting to the county for a “special use permit” that allows us to run a glamping site on our private property. The process is not cheap. Our initial meeting cost $500 to pull together the various agencies to legitimize this glamping project. The application itself is another $4300 with the ultimate plan to go in front of the county commissioners.
This seems like a lot, especially considering that this is for just applying for a permit. However, this will bring us out into the open with the proper permit to publicly advertise and become a formidable attraction. It will turn out a return in time.
Water rights are a big deal in Colorado, so I hired a water lawyer out of Denver. He is in the process of securing a new well on my property. He ran numbers to show that I am able to secure a 10-unit well tapping into the Denver Aquifer. The Water Plan will cost $2000-$4000.
Like planning, this is just to apply. Once accepted, a well would cost several thousands more.
This is the last of the expensive infrastructure items, and the last big investment to get things up to shape. Holes have been dug to run soil tests, and a new septic tank will be installed to supply septic for up to eight units. The testing and engineering will cost a few thousand, and the septic tank itself will run between $30-$50k.
Environment & Wildlife
Input from two agencies are needed. First is the Colorado Parks & Recreation and the second is US Fish & Wildlife. These take simply playing phone tag with the hopes of getting a ranger to write up a letter of approval for my environmentally safe glamping operation. The county wants input from both agencies as part of the larger plan.
I have been tag-teaming my neighbors with great success. Of my adjoining neighbors, all but one have written letters of approval for glamping on my property.
Now things get fun. I’m working with a drafter to create a map of what I plan to build. The plans change as my desires change, and that seems to be every day. As of today, I am aiming for three premium sites on the hill, three off-grid sites in the floodplain.
This is when the work will begin! If all of the above goes well, we will start building Monument Glamping in April. There may be some overlap in building that will require temporary camp toilets or potable water, but that shouldn’t hinder the rental months too much. Our aim is to have tents running by May 1, all infrastructure built by June 1.
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