New businesses and housing coming to Fruita
Fruita continues to carve out its own niche in the Grand Valley, pursuing opportunities to advance its reputation as a good place for recreation, for families and for businesses that want to embrace the small-town atmosphere.
The town of Fruita is getting close to having the plans finished for the Kokopelli portion of the Colorado Riverfront Trail, which will be a four-mile extension of the trail from Fruita to Loma.
“Our anticipated construction start is August,” said Ture Nycum, director of parks and recreation for the city of Fruita. Construction will be ongoing through the fall and winter, and the new portion of the trail should be open in the spring of 2018.
The town has also been working with the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and the Colorado Plateau Mountain Bike Trail Association (COPMOBA) to improve the mountain bike trails and the access near Mack Ridge.
“There’s a trailhead parking lot, but no trail,” Nycum said. “COPMOBA is starting construction of a trail that will go from the Mack parking lot; it will be a connector that takes people on top of Mack Ridge.”
A new business coming to Fruita is excited about the trail system, which is adjacent to the property at 1285 Greenway Drive, where three local partners are building the Fruita RV Resort and an RV storage facility.
“This will be a premier RV park,” said Janice Burtis, one of the partners, who has been working on the project for several years. “The Fruita people we’ve worked with are so excited about it.”
The RV Resort will have 142 spaces with full hook-ups for RVs, as well as 14 small cabins. A full-time manager will live at the resort, and there will also be a small store, a swimming pool, and a pond. The property borders the Little Salt Wash trail, which can take visitors under I-70 and connect to the Colorado Riverfront Trail system to Grand Junction or head in the other direction and go to downtown Fruita.
The resort and storage facility have both been approved by the city of Fruita, and construction of the RV park should start in April. The developers are hoping to have the RV park open sometime in the fall of 2017. The RV storage facility, which will include some covered areas, as well as some spaces that are fully enclosed and heated, will be built once the RV park is up and running.
“I have had almost 10 phone calls from RVers who already want to stay for six months at a time,” Burtis said.
The RV park will include lots of trees and landscaping and will be visible from the interstate. RVers with bikes can park their rigs, unload their bikes and ride to downtown Fruita in less than 10 minutes.
There has been a steady increase in new home construction in Fruita that will continue, thanks to several new neighborhoods that will soon have lots available for construction.
On the south side of the freeway, the infrastructure is already under construction at Adobe View North, a 34-lot subdivision near 18 Road and the frontage road. Annette Hejl with Coldwell Bankers has already taken 13 reservations for lots, which range from 7,500 square feet to more than 12,000 square feet. Prices are dependent on lot size, but start at $75,000.
Infrastructure construction should begin in April at Aspen Village, a 22-lot subdivision at the corner of Pine St. and Aspen.
“Lots may be available by late summer,” said Linda Kramer with RE/MAX 4000, who is co-listing the property with Ray Rickard. Prices have not yet been determined for the lots, which will range from 7,225 to13,223 square feet, but will most likely start around $80,000.
The last few developed lots at Brandon Estates are getting built out, and the city of Fruita has given preliminary approval for the infrastructure of the final two filings in that neighborhood, which sits near 19 and K Road.
The developers have also begun the process to bring Iron Wheel subdivision into the market, which will be a large housing development east of 19 Road off Highway 6 & 50. If approved as is, the plan includes 280 residential lots and two small commercial lots. The project is in early stages, however, so it may be 2018 before dirt starts getting moved for infrastructure.
Further west, U.S. Tractor & Harvest is opening a new store at 1984 Highway 6 & 50, which will be a replacement of the current Grand Junction dealership. The new store will carry the full line of John Deere equipment, and will also have Stihl products, lawn mowers, skid steer loaders, gun safes, apparel and toys.
“We’re very excited to be out there,” said Scott Van Horn, regional manager for U.S. Tractor. “The mayor and the city manager have been very helpful.”
The dealership, which is about three times larger than the Grand Junction facility, should be open sometime in the week of March 27, and the grand opening is scheduled for April 8. Staff from the Grand Junction store will relocate to the Fruita location, and new hires will be added as business warrants additional personnel.
Healthcare in Fruita is also expanding, with a new medical building, the Kokopelli Medical Center, getting ready to open in April, and the hospital, Colorado Canyons, planning to break ground on an expansion sometime this summer. The hospital opened in 2008 and currently has 25 beds. The expansion will include nine more beds.
Fruita will also be home to Beer, Gear and Grub, a new event on May 20 in the Kokopelli Shopping Center on the south side of the interstate. The new event will combine buying summer outdoor gear and tasting beer, which are rumored to pair very nicely together. Proceeds from the event will go to yet-to-be named non-profit.