Big Sky Road

The spur road to Big Sky is shown in this Chronicle file photo. 

A Big Sky real estate company has asked Gallatin County District Court to reverse a decision by the county commissioners and the planning department regarding applications for seven luxury condominium units and a storage building adjacent to the Big Sky Golf Course.

Tract 5 LLC alleges the county wrongly denied its request for a condominium exemption, which would have excused the development from the lengthy subdivision review process, according to court documents filed last week. Tract 5 also said the county may not be following subdivision regulations in its handling of condominium exemption requests.

In 2013, Tract 5 submitted an application to the planning department for a condominium exemption and included a site plan showing all of the buildings it intended to construct. At that time, Tract 5 asked for a condominium exemption for only two buildings. The planning department approved the exemption.

Three years later, Tract 5 asked the planning department for a condominium exemption for another one of the buildings, according to court documents. The planning department also approved this request.

In July 2019, Tract 5 submitted a condominium exemption request for the final buildings included in its original site plan. The planning department denied the request and told Tract 5 that its project had to go through subdivision review — a seeming reversal of earlier planning department decisions.

Tract 5 alleges the county shouldn’t have denied its most recent request for a condominium exemption or required it to go through subdivision review.

Based on the exemptions it had received, Tract 5 proceeded to construct buildings, parking, streets and other infrastructure that may not comply with subdivision regulations, court documents said. Going through the subdivision review process and complying with the necessary regulations would substantially increase costs at this point.

Tract 5 is asking the court to grant the final condominium exemption, eliminating the requirement for subdivision review.

Tract 5 also says that county subdivision regulations may require that exemptions to the rules go before the county commission and can’t be decided by the planning department as was done in this instance. Tract 5 would like the court to clarify how exemptions must be handled.

Alanah Griffith, the lawyer for Tract 5, and the Gallatin County Attorney’s Office both said said they did not want to comment on the appeal at this time.

Perrin Stein can be reached at 406-582-2648 or at Follow her on Twitter @PerrinStein.

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