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Old 08-11-2015, 11:14 AM   #43
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Need to include an adequate area for checking in. Been to places where one rig blocks the entrance. Overflow/guest parking. No obstructions, especially trees at any corner apex. No grand entrances with gates, planters, guard houses, which narrow the roadway to the point of making getting in to difficult. Keep the roadways wide and simple.

Totally agree Dan! I would have a nice lighted sign at the side of the entrance, NOT in the middle of it!
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Old 08-11-2015, 11:16 AM   #44
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* Each site (or plenty of them at least) to have a path to the South for portable satellite dish.
* Trees for shade most of the day (but perhaps some without shade for those that prefer no trees)
* Laundry
* Some sort of water - ie. river, creek, or small pond.
* Good coverage of the major cell phone networks.
* Security of some sort or at least in an area not prone for crimes.
* Strict enforcement of quiet times.
* NO unattended/leashed animals.
* Room for RV and a vehicle close to your RV

Some ideas from our experiences! Neat thread.
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Old 08-11-2015, 11:26 AM   #45
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Originally Posted by n5pht View Post
* Each site (or plenty of them at least) to have a path to the South for portable satellite dish.
* Trees for shade most of the day (but perhaps some without shade for those that prefer no trees)
* Laundry
* Some sort of water - ie. river, creek, or small pond.
* Good coverage of the major cell phone networks.
* Security of some sort or at least in an area not prone for crimes.
* Strict enforcement of quiet times.
* NO unattended/leashed animals.
* Room for RV and a vehicle close to your RV

Some ideas from our experiences! Neat thread.
Good points! Thanks Gary!
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Old 08-11-2015, 12:00 PM   #46
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I've considered this a couple of times in the 5 or so years I've been RVing. Ten to twelve thousand per site, plus the cost of land, add a pool, pavilion, office, and viola... it's an RV park! Land costs are through the roof... especially in areas where site demand would be high so the occupancy would be high year-round. If there's an economic downturn, occupancy drops. If fuel prices rise, occupancy drops. If XYZ happens, occupancy drops...

It would seem to me that the way to break into this would be to purchase a park that exists, but has deteriorated somewhat, but only if the price is right. Refurbish and renovate, and make it what it needs to be... I think one could come out much better that way, without being outrageously priced. Once it's done, advertise and keep it up as nice as possible. The downside is that you would not get to lay it out as you know it needs to be. You would have to work with the layout as is. That could be daunting... or rewarding...

I noticed a park that I've been in a few times in Oklahoma is for sale... or was... not sure it's still available. It's layout isn't the greatest but it does work. It could be improved into a really nice park. It's in an area where tourists are plentiful. We've only been there in the off season and I've never seen this park less than half full.

Why haven't I jumped on it??? I'm 14 1/2 months from retirement... I've worked enough...
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Old 08-11-2015, 03:17 PM   #47
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> C shaped drives

We were at a state park in Louisiana that has this setup and liked it a lot; all were pull-through sites but weren't necessarily very long. It was a very efficient use of the road and roadsides and since the sites "faced" the woods it was rather private.

A co-op park we were involved with in west-central Florida redeveloped an orange grove into a new-section RV park with 50 sites about five years ago. It was simply paved streets, electric and sewer infrastructure, and even though we owned the land it was still somewhat north of $1 million. Then some bright spark thought we should put a bathhouse back there too and it was another $100k. LOL
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Old 08-11-2015, 03:53 PM   #48
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IMHO, there are too many folks out there now with allergy problems that can't take the smoke. If they end up with a neighbor that loves campfires then they have to move, which is sometimes a big hassle! Maybe a big fire pit at the Pavilion would be a compromise?

Yep, the dog run was definitely an oversight!

How would you classify a standard or premium site?
I would agree in the removal of fire pits at each site - our problem is that a neighbor who wants to have a fire cannot control the smoke direction, which never seems to bother them but always seems to blow right into our coach!
I also am not going to an RV park to 'camp', that's more for campgrounds, our idea of an RV park is a place for a short stay, mostly for self contained 'homes' on wheels - maybe I should add 'adult park' as well...
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Old 08-11-2015, 04:06 PM   #49
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Take an overhead view of the RV park at Seven Feathers Casino, and copy it.
It's laid out as well as any I've been to !
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Old 08-11-2015, 04:34 PM   #50
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My two cents is for level sites, utility connections high enough to use a water filter and surge protector and close enough for one sewer hose. I like trees but not in the slide or awning areas. Selling good ice cream is also a plus.
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Old 08-11-2015, 04:34 PM   #51
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Cool

I like this park layout idea I've seen before, specifically near Hershey PA - an all pull-thru type park, with circular design - no backing in, no 'too close' neighbors, and easy in-and-out design...
the park can contain as many, or as few, of these 'neighborhoods' as desired
: )
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Old 08-11-2015, 06:59 PM   #52
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You basically drew Heritage RV in Orange Beach Al. Except your bath house at the bottom of the U is a club house over looking the marina and bay with an elevated observation deck with a big fire pit in the center.
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Old 08-11-2015, 07:22 PM   #53
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Good thread. Interesting flow of ideas too. Back in 2000, we seriously considered designing and building an RV park. Not really as a work hobby, but as an investment. The design was not nearly as daunting as the nitty gritty legal stuff and of course setting up a full time employee force.

Bottom line ... our money would gather more interest (profit) in laddered CDs. My initial gut feeling was that it would be that way, but we had to run the numbers just to be sure.

If you have tinkered with the same idea (and it seems many of you have), then you know how many variables are involved. One positive that we had going for us was land ownership in a beautiful setting. There was nothing to lose by simply keeping the land as-is and waiting for the value to increase. It was all about profit, and if we really had a burning desire to be RV park owners and lose money, I guess we would have continued with "the plan".

Several posts back In the thread there was a mention of the uncertainty that goes with RV park occupancy. Numerous things beyond the control of a park owner can bring the yearly occupancy down below the break even point.

Once in a while we have the opportunity to discuss ideas with RV park owners. I think with most, it is a labor of love more than for high profit. Still, I respect their effort and chutzpah.

Rambling here ... we spotted a defunct RV park in MS not far from a Corps of Engineer park. After we motored past, the urge to go back and snoop was out of control. We did. I was stunned by the layout, utility rigging, etc. It appeared to have been well planned for big rigs. Not knowing the real reason for its demise, but one thought was that once the Corps park was constructed, this commercial park could not compete. That's one risk that the owner may not have considered.

Also, somewhere near Crystal River, Florida there is an elaborate housing development street network with no houses. We rode our bikes around for miles, all the time wondering what happened. Would this be a good setup for an RV park? Probably could be done, but I'll bet there are legal entanglements a mile high.

So much for my gasbag rambling. Keep this thread going with ideas.
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Old 08-11-2015, 08:30 PM   #54
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I would agree in the removal of fire pits at each site - our problem is that a neighbor who wants to have a fire cannot control the smoke direction, which never seems to bother them but always seems to blow right into our coach!
I also am not going to an RV park to 'camp', that's more for campgrounds, our idea of an RV park is a place for a short stay, mostly for self contained 'homes' on wheels - maybe I should add 'adult park' as well...
Silly question - if the smoke from fire pits bothers folks, is running a grill out of the question as well? I mean when I'm grilling, it can put out some real smoke and I have no control of where that smoke goes.
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Old 08-11-2015, 08:52 PM   #55
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Actually as an engineer with the DNR I designed and oversaw the construction of DNR projects. Parks Division got a huge chunk of land with a lake on it donated to them and wanted a new state park designed and built there. So I got the assignment to design and build the whole park. A part of that was designing the campgrounds.

That was like throwing Brer Rabbit into the briar patch. Aw shucks, do I really have to design some campgrounds? Dream job it was!

So, here's a couple that I designed from the ground up:
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Old 08-11-2015, 10:45 PM   #56
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Silly question - if the smoke from fire pits bothers folks, is running a grill out of the question as well? I mean when I'm grilling, it can put out some real smoke and I have no control of where that smoke goes.
If you use a propane grill, its nowhere near as toxic as charcoal, wood, etc. Plus you cook for what? 30 minutes?
It's the wood that is toxic.
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