By BROOKE SNAVELY
CENTRAL OREGON DAILY
Deschutes County Commissioners on Monday moved a step closer to making a code change that could pave the way for employee housing at Sunriver Resort.
Sunriver Resort’s proposed text amendments to allow employee housing in the Sunriver Business Park encountered a bumpy ride at the Deschutes County Planning Commission’s November and December meetings.
The planning commissioners said they supported the general concepts but voted against the amendments due to concerns about adequate parking, enforcement and compatibility with other uses in the business park.
The housing unit would be located in the Sunriver Business Park, currently home to the resort’s post office, library, school and other businesses.
The resort made some changes and today County Commissioners discussed the proposal.
“In the interim period, the applicant which is Sunriver Resort, they worked on some of those issues that the planning commission was concerned about,” said Tanya Saltzman, associate planner for Deschutes County. “And staff here at the county worked on making sure that that code was well written, clean and concise and easy to enforce.”
According to the applicant, nearly 1,000 people work in Sunriver and the surrounding resorts during the summer months, creating a need for affordable employee housing.
Initially, Sunriver Resort proposed the employee housing might be available to the general public when it was not in use by employees.
But they’ve since defined that only people employed in the tourism industry within two miles of Sunriver or at Mt. Bachelor could live in the employee housing. Mount Bachelor employees need housing in winter so the proposed zoning changes could meet the needs of both summer and winter tourism industry workers.
“Anybody who comes in to apply for this would have to go through the site plan review process,” Saltzman said. “That’s when they look at the real details of egress, parking and where everything is going to be laid out and that sort of thing.”
Sunriver Resort proposes changing Deschutes County codes on six undeveloped lots in the Sunriver Business Park to allow dormitory style employee housing. The resort already owns one of the lots that would be covered by the proposed changes to county codes.