Your Voice: River Caddis project blends with downtown

Editor’s note: This letter was submitted to Farmington city officials and provided to Farmington Voice for publication. 

We have been following your progress in choosing a developer for the Maxfield Training Center property in Downtown Farmington. We have also been seeing multiple comments and Letters to the Editor on the subject.

We would like to add our voices to the debate, to help inform your decision. We trust that you will consider all of the information made available, and make a sound decision that will be best for the entire city and all of its residents.

Given Farmington’s small size, and the scarcity of land available for projects of this nature, especially in the downtown, we believe it is vitally important that Farmington gets this project right.

It appears that many of the comments to date center around the type of housing and the number of units proposed. While this will be an important consideration, we believe it is much too early in the process for it to be the deciding factor.

As we understand it, the RFQ process is just the first step in a multi-layer process. There will be multiple opportunities to discuss “rent vs. own”, number of units, etc. as this process advances through the various city departments and commissions toward approval. Now is the time to select the developer who demonstrates the best qualifications for the project. Once a developer is chosen, we are confident that city officials will ensure that the eventual site plan meets our expectations.

Looking at the scorecard you developed for the RFQ process, River Caddis, with its perfect score, has clearly demonstrated that they are the best choice for this project. I have read the RFQ submissions for the two remaining developers, and I believe your evaluation scoring is accurate. From their excellent financial stability, to their unique experience working with brownfields in a downtown area, River Caddis noticeably stands out.

Further, the River Caddis proposal was far more impressive in terms of design and buildout. Based on their application, I envision a River Caddis project that blends in seamlessly with our downtown area. I expect to see a finished product that will make Farmington proud. The Robertson Brothers proposal indicated that our project would be a variation on their “Aspen” model, currently built or under construction in at least eight other locations. I didn’t see anything in their submission that said “Farmington”.

There will be plenty of time to analyze the specifics for the site. At this point, we believe the best decision for all Farmington residents would be to select River Caddis as the developer on this project.

Thomas and Buff Donovan

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