When the Edward Lowe Foundation, which supports and recognizes second-stage entrepreneurs, cited 50 Colorado companies as “major powerhouses when it comes to job creation,” a yurt manufacturer and one of its customers both made the list.
The Colorado Yurt Company, Montrose, Colo., began making the rounded canvas structures in 1984, gradually updating the yurt’s traditional Mongolian design with durable industrial fabrics, weatherproof engineering and custom features. Dan and Emma Kigar started the business after successfully making Native American tipis for their friends, and the company now manufactures canvas structures of all sizes for camps, eco-resorts and bed-and-breakfast operations. One customer, a holistic wilderness therapy program called Open Sky Wilderness, also made the “50 Colorado Companies to Watch” list. “They represent the best of what our structures can offer to those who choose nontraditional and less costly housing solutions that are environmentally friendly,” says Dan Kigar.
Custom yurt features include taller walls (up to 6 feet, 7 inches), a Euro-dome lifter that allows users to raise or lower the roof, and cold-weather insulation packages. Roof options include Duro-Last® vinyl roof membrane, a proprietary thermoplastic of PVC resins, plasticizers, stabilizers, biocides, flame retardants and UV absorbents. A weft-insertion knitted scrim is laminated between two layers of PVC film for strength and durability.