TRUSTED NEWS LEADER FOR COTTONWOOD, CAMP VERDE & THE VERDE VALLEY
Thu, Feb. 27

Clarkdale P&Z recommends Cliffrose<br><i>Commission attaches stipulations to zoning change</i>

VVN/Philip Wright

BETH Escobar, Clarkdale planner, uses a map to answer a question from the public during the planning & zoning commission's regular meeting. The main item on the agenda was a requested zoning change from residential to planned area development by developers of the proposed Cliffrose Village.

The Clarkdale Planning & Zoning Commission voted Monday night to recommend a zoning change from residential to the planned area development (PAD) sought by developers of Cliffrose Village.

Originally proposed with 323 homes, the revised concept drawing presented by Kyle Spencer, an engineer for the developer, now includes 240 home sites. Other changes, including a realignment of space set aside for commercial development and the addition of a 3,000-square-foot community building, were included in the latest plan.

A motion by Commissioner Dewey Reierson to send the developers back to the drawing board for a lower density PAD died for lack of a second.

Reierson was the only "no" vote on a follow-up motion by Vice Chairperson Robyn Prudhomme-Bauer to recommend approval of the requested zoning change, but with 10 stipulations attached. The next step will require Wright Trust Foundation to prepare a preliminary plat that incorporates the commission's stipulations. The final decision on the zoning change will be made by the town council.

Before the vote, the meeting was opened for public comment followed with a discussion and response period by staff, commission members and representatives of the developer.

About 16 Clarkdale property owners expressed their opposition to, and concerns about, the development. Many points, from light pollution and environmental stewardship to fire hydrants and fire and police protection were voiced. A few residents said they fear that the development will become the town's ghetto.

Primary among residents' worries were water, flood control, traffic, population density and the impact on the town's sewer infrastructure.

Steven Brown, planning department director, explained that light pollution in the proposed development would be controlled by the same standards as the rest of the town. He said the light ordinance was revised last year.

"It does a pretty good job of controlling light pollution," Brown said.

State law prohibits the commission from considering water availability in its decisions about development because the town does not own the water source. However, Beth Escobar, Clarkdale planner, said the developers are working with Cottonwood Water Works. She said the master plan stresses water conservation in its landscape design.

Brown said the town cannot restrict development based on water supply, but it can require that water be supplied to the new homes.

Spencer said Cottonwood Water Works has recently drilled a new well on the development site.

Flooding was a major worry of nearby residents. Some said they feel that development on the land in question will cause massive runoff onto their property.

Spencer reported that no homes would be built on the 100-year flood plain portion of the development as identified by the Federal Emergency Management Agency. "We are fully honoring what the experts are telling us."

He said the use of detention basins on the property instead of retention basins will help control drainage.

One of the commission's stipulations regarding the PAD demands that the developer conduct a traffic analysis in accordance with the town's preparation guidelines.

Spencer said some traffic counts have already been done, and the developer intends to follow through on the traffic impact study. "There is some flexibility with the roadway patterns," he said.

Another stipulation requires the developer to work closely with the town, and possibly the developers of the Mountain Gate subdivision, to either develop a sewer plant or help pay for the upgrades necessary to Clarkdale's system.

Brown spoke to the public's desire to see a lower-density plan for the PAD. He said a PAD provides more open space and adequate infrastructure than would a regular subdivision.

Escobar pointed out that a subdivision developed under current R-1 zoning could build 320 homes, 80 more than the proposed PAD. She said current zoning would give the town less control over open space and homeowners could build with septic tanks instead of tying into a sewer system.

Commissioner Bob Noland said Clarkdale needs commercial development to bring in sales tax. "I'm aware of the public's concerns," he said. "With a PAD, we, as a town, have more say than with development that sells lots one at a time."

"Development is here. It's real," Brown said. "The last time there was a significant downturn in population was Noah."

Report a Typo Contact
Event Calendar
Event Calendar link
Submit Event