Nearly 20 years ago, the community drew a boundary around town where lodging — hotels, B&Bs, short-term rentals — would be permitted. The goal was to concentrate tourists around the Square and in areas where services and amenities are easily available.
Now, in an era of VRBO and AirBnb, those boundaries have been muddied. Also, developers are pitching new hotels on North Cache and the old Sagebrush Motel site on Flat Creek, west of Staples.
The Town of Jackson is seeking input from citizens on where lodging should be allowed. Planners are taking a fresh look at the boundary, called the lodging overlay, as they begin to write regulations for the new Comprehensive Plan.
It’s a key decision because lodging generally is seen as the most profitable use of land, meaning property owners could stand to gain or lose value. Also, the community wants to preserve the quiet character of residential neighborhoods.