Teton County planning commissioners backed a proposal Tuesday to swap out more traditional camping units at the Snake River KOA for more recreational park trailers.
Planning commissioners approved the application 4-1.
Patricia Russell cast the lone vote in opposition, raising questions about whether allowing campground owners to shed more of their traditional offerings would affect the overall character of the valley, according to draft minutes of the meeting.
Budd Chatham, owner of the Snake River KOA near Hoback Junction, told commissioners he wants to bring more recreational park trailers — hard-sided trailers that are built on chassis and can be hauled on or off properties — to his property to meet the changing needs of campers.
He said visitors to the campground have consistently said they prefer the larger recreational park trailers to other recreational vehicle spots at the campground, which are smaller. He also said his proposal would reduce traffic at his property.
Chatham could have a total of 98 campsites, which includes recreational park trailers, recreational vehicles and tent sites. Additionally, he is allowed to have 17 cabins.
As approved by planning commissioners, Snake River KOA could have as many as 39 recreational park trailers.
The proposal doesn’t increase the overall number of campsites at the property; it increases the ratio of recreational park trailers on the property. Most of the campsites can be used year-round.
Chatham’s application is the first one submitted under new rules that county officials approved last spring for recreational park trailers. In 2010, commissioners approved an application from Chatham to bring 27 of the recreational park trailers onto his property. He has only 20 at the campground.
The issue is slated to go before county commissioners in coming weeks.