Coös County Commissioners and Delegation Unanimously Approve Balsams-Related Zoning Changes
DIXVILLE, N.H. (November 9, 2015) – At a joint meeting of the Coos County Commission and Coos County Delegation November 5, each body reviewed and approved three zoning amendments that are essential to the Balsams Resort’s proposed redevelopment.
“We have worked for several months with the Coos County Planning Board, Commissioners, and Delegation on determining the most appropriate path for our redevelopment to move forward,” said Les Otten who is leading the Balsams redevelopment team. “We are pleased the Commission and Delegation unanimously approved these critically important zoning amendments. We are very grateful for all of the time and effort these community leaders have put into the review thus far. This is a very significant milestone for the Balsams and another major step towards the rebirth of this majestic property.”
The first approved zoning amendment creates a new Resort District in the area of the former Balsams Resort and surrounding recreation areas, and encourages further patterns of compatible development. The second removes “Planned Development” as a type of Subdistrict requiring County Commissioner and County Delegation approval for a zoning change, and creates instead a process whereby the Planning Board can issue a Conditional Use Permit for a Planned Unit Developments. The third amendment contains numerous changes to clarify existing wording and requirements, to remove inconsistencies from the Ordinance, and to update the Ordinance relative to changes in state law.
The Coos County Planning Board will hold a public hearing on the Balsams’ proposed development at 6:00 pm on Wednesday, November 11, 2015 at Colebrook’s Tillotson Center.
Other project milestones thus far include receiving a Water Quality Certificate (WQC) under Section 401 of the federal Clean Water Act. The certificate grants The Balsams permission to withdraw water from the Androscoggin River for snowmaking at what will become the largest ski resort in the northeastern United States. In addition to receiving this critical permit, The Balsams recently surpassed more than 175 reservations from people wishing to purchase Balsams Century Club property when it becomes available.
The proposed Balsams’ redevelopment includes renovating the historic Dix House, Hampshire House and Hale House, as well as the acclaimed Panorama golf course and clubhouse designed by pioneering course architect Donald Ross. The Balsams Lake Village, which will encompass the Dix and Hampshire Houses, will feature a new Lake Gloriette House hotel, a 500-seat conference center, Nordic hot baths and spa, a performing arts center and an open-air marketplace. The resort’s fine cuisine and chef training programs, known worldwide, will return through multiple dining opportunities around the resort. All will embrace the farm-to-table concept by sourcing locally-grown meats, produce and dairy.
The plan also includes expanding The Balsams Wilderness Ski Area into the largest and most technically advanced ski resort on the East Coast. With a skiing base camp at 2,350 feet above sea level, in a true alpine climate zone, The Balsams is known to receive among the highest annual snow totals of any ski resort in the Northeast. At build out it will offer 2,200 acres of alpine terrain accessed by 23 lifts, and 100 kilometers of Nordic trails.
Nestled within the grand northern White Mountains in Dixville Notch, New Hampshire, The Balsams’ 11,000 sprawling acres of breathtaking and accessible wilderness is spectacular. The Balsams Resort will offer all of the following on its property, so visitors will never need to use their cars to access the:
- Largest and most advanced ski resort on the East Coast
- Legendary Donald Ross 18-hole golf course
- Mountain lakes for boating, swimming, fishing
- Endless miles of maintained trails for biking, running, hiking and recreational vehicles
- Fitness center with Yoga and Pilates classes
- Aerial adventure park
- Performing arts center and festivals
- Unique lakeside “Resort Campus” layout
- Adjacency to the US/Canadian 1,000 mile snowmobile “Superhighway”