Ormsby House granted building permit extension by Carson City Board of Supervisors

This story is reposted from October 2016 because of a bad link:

The Carson City Board of Supervisors on Thursday granted a third 18-month extension of a building permit for the Ormsby House.

The extension comes with conditions, including the requirement to finish work on the exterior of the building and remove the construction fencing within 90 days or the permit will be yanked.

In addition, the permit will be reviewed by the board every six months to ensure the owners are actively marketing the property.

The latest extension had to be approved by the board following two, administrative extensions on the downtown property, which was purchased in 1999 and has been under renovation since 2000.

Approximately 80 percent of the work is done and the remaining permit covers the last 20 percent of the project.

The owners, Don Lehr and Al Fiegehen, decided four weeks ago to sell the property, said Kim Fiegehen, who represented them at the supervisors meeting.

“It was their dream to contribute to revitalizing downtown and restore it to the icon it once was,” said Fiegehen, but the project ran into numerous problems, including asbestos removal, totaling $30 million in costs.

“It’s outlived it’s master. Don is 87 and Al is turning 80 and they’re no longer able to do it,” she said.

Discussion around an initial motion to extend the permit 12 months with the same conditions made by Mayor Bob Crowell focused on whether that would give the owners enough time to market the property.

Tom Metcalf, Metcalf Builders, who will be doing the exterior work for the owners, said 18 months will help to ensure the property could close escrow after due diligence and negotiations without losing the existing permit. A new owner would need a new permit if plans for the building were changed from the current hotel/casino to condominiums, for example.

Supervisors Lori Bagwell suggested the permit could be extended again after the 12-month proposed extension, but Metcalf said a buyer, especially one from outside Carson City, would be concerned it wouldn’t be granted.

“As much as I’d like to keep this approval on a short leash, due diligence is six to 12 months and possibly longer,” said Supervisor Brad Bonkowski. “If we do move forward on approval let’s make sure there is constant communication so we know there is an ongoing attempt to move forward with a sale. We have to have some assurances that this is moving forward.”

Garrett Lepire, who serves on the Redevelopment Authority Citizens Committee, gave the sole public comment and said the outside work should be expedited.

“This needs to be cleaned up by Nevada Day. This is a big moment for Carson City,” said Lepire, referring to the downtown construction, which is on track to be done by the state holiday.

“Could it be done by Nevada Day? Sure, but I literally just heard about it a couple days ago,” said Metcalf.

In the end, the supervisors agreed unanimously to give the owners 90 days for exterior work and an 18-month extension on the building permit.

In other actions, the board appointed Jeremy Hall to fill an opening on the Open Space Advisory Committee after conducting five interviews; approved the $152,972.03 purchase of roofing material from Garland/DBS, Inc. to coat part of the Carson Aquatic Facility roof; and accepted the dedication of right-of-way from Schulz Ranch Subdivision Phase 1.


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