An Interview with Elevation 6000 Developer John Romney

Posted on February 2, 2017 by georgek

The Elevation 6000 condominiums, located in Big Sky’s thriving town center, mark a new second-home trend in the greater Big Sky area. Built by Big Sky Dream, LLC and Managing Partner John Romney, the Elevation 6000 condominiums are efficient, comfortable, customizable and part of the changing face of the Big Sky community.  For John Romney, the Elevation 6000 project is a labor of love in a place that he now calls home. Romney originally developed property in Big Sky in 2005 and became a full-time resident with his wife and three children in 2008. Since then, Romney has been active in the Big Sky building scene, helping to bring to life four separate mixed-use commercial and residential buildings, including the Lone Peak Cinema and Phase 2 of the Cottonwood Crossing residences. Elevation 6000 is his most recent creation. We sat down with John Romney to ask him about his new project, and what sets the Elevation 6000 condos apart from other housing options in Big Sky’s town center.

Elevation 6000 Exterior

BSS: How long have you been in the building industry?  JR: Since 2011.

BSS: What is your favorite part about building homes in Montana? 

JR: I love seeing and being a part of the overall development of the Big Sky Community, and in particular, the Big Sky Town Center.  It’s great to be a part of the development of the entry corridor along Ousel Falls Road. I enjoy the mix of development from commercial buildings, to long-term rentals, to condominiums; all integrated with trail systems and recreational and entertainment options.  The Town Center development has been thoughtfully approached to provide a continuity and mixture of architecture while maintaining a pedestrian friendly, community environment.  I also love creating a “neighborhood” where different residents of the community interact.

BSS: What elements of Montana living, if any, do you incorporate into your residential projects?

JR: We do our best to incorporate the mountain views and outside space into our projects along with easy access to the trail systems.

BSS: What are some unique challenges that building in Big Sky presents?

 JR: The biggest current challenges are finding good subcontractors with the substantial construction demand throughout Big Sky.  We have been lucky to have worked with and maintained a great group of subcontractors continuously over the past several years.  Weather is obviously a factor so we have traditionally started all of our projects in the spring leaving only interior finish items for the winter.  We have learned from the experience of others and put a lot of extra work into our roofing and insulation systems.

BSS: What sets the Elevation 6000 project apart from other projects you’ve built?

JR: Elevation 6000 were built to sell to a primarily “second-home” market, so we are trying to “get into the hearts and heads” of potential buyers and build something they will love.  The challenge in not knowing the buyer up front. So we come up with a palette of materials, colors, and styles that can satisfy a majority of buyers, yet still allow the buyer to ultimately put their personal imprint on the condominium with their furnishings.

BSS: Is the Elevation 600 project unique in terms of its efficiency as a building? 

JR: The majority of our lighting is LED and we use high efficiency appliances and gas forced heating.  One area where we don’t skimp is insulation.  We use spray foam throughout the exterior walls was well as board and bat insulation which gives us an R rating much higher than what is required by code.  While these items cost extra money up front (and are not always done in Big Sky), in the long run it saves on the operating costs; and I believe the buyers can feel and appreciate the difference.

BSS: What elements of the home do you hope that the future owners appreciate?

JR: To me the condos just “feel good” when you are in them.  That is most important to me- that a place feels comfortable and has an overall warmth to it.  The stairwells, ceilings and hallways are light, spacious and airy, and I believe this is something that owners and guests will immediately notice.  In fact, we liked the units so much that we decided to keep one for ourselves as a place for our parents (or possibly more importantly our kids’ grandparents), and friends and family to stay when they visit Montana.

BSS: What’s your favorite design detail in this project?

JR: I can’t say I have a favorite.  I like the exterior palette, colors and roof lines; I like the richness, the warmth, and the space of the interiors; and I like the interface between the units and the open space in the back and the easy access to Town Center.

BSS: How does the Elevation 6000 project embody the work that you do as a builder in general?

JR: We try to build great, high quality units with quality materials at a reasonable price.  We are actively involved in all aspects of the project from day one, and are on-site continuously throughout the process.  I believe this helps keep costs down and quality up.  Frankly, I think to be able to build and offer new units of this quality at a price of under $300 per square foot in this current environment in Big Sky is a minor miracle. Ben Coleman, the agent listing the Elevation 6000 condos with Big Sky Sotheby’s says “I’ve been fortunate to work with several developers in my 17 years of Big Sky real estate and John has been a pleasure to work with.  He’s great to communicate with, very open minded and transparent.  John wants to find a way so that everyone wins.  I really enjoy that attitude

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