Showing posts with label Houses. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Houses. Show all posts

Sunday, November 16, 2008

North/South Fields Rezone

The move is on to rezone the North Fields. The first step appears to be the rezone of the South Fields, this was recommended by a 4-1 vote at the recent Planning Commission meeting.

A public Hearing on the matter is scheduled for 6 PM on 19 Nov. It is item #9. Items #7 and #8 are also rezone requests (P160 to M zone or 1 house per 160 acres to a potential 1 house per 2.5 acres - a 64 fold increase)

Several arguments were presented in opposition to the change, to no avail:
  1. The Wasatch County General Plan (See Chap. 4, pg 159) indicates the area is "highly prized by many local residents" and is "identified as having a public benefit as open space." The area has been called the jewel of the valley and its current zoning A-20 (Agricultural with one house allowed per twenty acres) protects the "desired green belt separation between Heber and Midway" (Policy 1.1.1)
  2. The area is NOT included within the Proposed Heber City Annexation Policy. Several member of the Heber City Planning Commission attended the meeting and spoke against the rezone.
  3. The area is in the "Inundation Area of Sudden Jordanelle Dam Failure" - approval of more houses could present potential danger to those house and liability to County taxpayers.
  4. There are currently only 6 large land parcels (>20 acres) in the 464 acre proposed rezone area and another 12 parcels between 5 and 20 acres which, as "lots of record," could already be built upon. Some parcels already have houses built. Of ten parcels less than 5 acres, 7 current have residences.
  5. A zone change from A-20 to RA-5 would increase the number of allowable houses from 33 to 92.
  6. The long proposed ByPass road passes through several of the parcels, a rezone would likely increase the cost of property acquisition.
  7. An Open Space, Transferable Development Right ordinance was recently passed allowing a "bonus" sale from rights in this area. Rezoning would adversely affect the goals of that ordinance.
  8. While presented as a "County initiated" rezone, it was clearly introduced by the land owners and not necessarily for the "health, safety and welfare" of the community in general.

In 2000, a well written resolution was introduced to "protect" the North Fields - regrettably it was never really considered for passage:

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Update on County RA-1

The Plan to "encourage innovative site planning" with the objective for "Achieving a Rural Landscape Character and, specifically, to "maintain and protect Wasatch County's rural character" and to promote a rural feel along county roads" and all sorts of wonderful platitudes is nearing completion and passage by the County Council.

This proposal was discussed here in September. It hasn't improved in the interim and will allow a near certain guarantee of an increase in RA-1 density over pre-moratorium (2005) days by 30%.

Growth has been the prime election issue in Wasatch County for years and county (and city) government continues to lead in allowing MORE density.

Consider this, for each average house built a NEGATIVE fiscal impact of $1 to 2,000 must be imposed on all of the taxpayers. A ONE house increase to a developer is worth about $100 to 200,000 in profit. So who is looking out for the taxpayers and who is maximizing the developer profit? (answers - NO ONE and your elected officials)

What are the potential results of this change?

Current number of houses existing in the Eastern Planning Area (EPA) = 625
  • potential houses under current law ca. 4700
  • potential houses under new law ca. 6250
  • A potential 33% INCREASE in an area with a current approval of about 1500 houses
NOTE: this is only in the Eastern Planning Area (Center/Lake Creek area) and only in the RA-1 Zone.

NOTE also that there are currently development approved in Wasatch County (not including municipalities of Heber, Midway, etc.) of over 13,000 housing units
which are yet to built. There are currently about a total of about 10,000 houses in the County. Oh, the 13,000 does not include an additional 3,600 recently awarded to the Sorenson development (Jordanelle Ridge)

Where are we being led and why are being led there? Answer - Wasatch City and I have no idea.

Click here
or on the zoning or planning links in the left column for more information.

The current downturn in the real estate market may provide us with the breathing room to do a little proper planning - of we would only use it!!!

Monday, June 18, 2007

Scriptural warnings

Planning and Zoning??

Isaiah 5:8 Woe unto them that join house to house, that lay field to field, till there be no place, that they may be placed alone in the midst of the earth!

9 In mine ears said the LORD of hosts, Of a truth many houses shall be desolate, even great and fair, without inhabitant.

Micah 2:2 And they covet fields, and take them by violence; and houses, and take them away: so they oppress a man and his house, even a man and his heritage.

Friday, December 01, 2006

NEW RA-1 Code = MORE houses

On 11/29, the Wasatch County Council passed a new RA-1 development law again accelerating the march toward Wasatch City. This was a joint public hearing of the Council and the Planning Commission, which was not widely advertised. Changes to Title 16 (Land Use code) generally have two separate public hearings separated by 14 day public notice periods for the public to consider and comment on the proposed changes.

Approval of the change was first recommended by the Planning Commission by a vote of 5-1, after discussion and minimal public input. Perhaps some residents had missed the legal notice in the Deseret News.

The Council then approved the measure with a few changes, which further increased the allowable density. Approval was by a vote of 4-3, with Bangerter, Price, Draper and Farrell voting in favor and Anderton, Crittenden and Kohler voicing opposition.

Current number of houses existing in the Eastern Planning Area (EPA) = 625
  • potential houses under current law ca. 4700
  • potential houses under new law ca. 6250
  • A potential 33% INCREASE in an area with a current approval of about 1500 houses

Below is an analysis of the potential effects on the EPA(Center and Lake Creek area) from Wasatch County GIS data.

below 5.0 acres maximum houses acres/1.3 minus one for the current house
5.0 to 15 acres: maximum houses = acres - current houses
empty parcels will more likely approach the max allowable
parcels with current houses may be less likely to subdivide
current law: 0.75 houses per acre

A few lots are P160
Timber Lakes development NOT included
For reference, Red Ledges development proposal was for a total of 1400 houses. In 2004, Wasatch County had 7,853 housing units.
This analysis does not include P160 and M Zone
This analysis covers ONLY the EPA and does not include other areas of Wasatch County, including Jordanelle (which may have a build out of 15,000 houses).

The primary cause of the increase under the new law results from now allowing credit for area used by roads in the computation of density. This has historical never been done. Under the current law, recently under moratorium, 25% of the area was removed for roads yielding a maximum density of one lot per acre for 75% of the buildable land in a parcel. (40 acres allowed 30 houses)

No solution was offered to the Transportation Plan for the area to accommodate this future growth. The recent citizens' General Plan review of the EPA was not presented or apparently considered.


RA 1 No Houses Built547372147682116106141201

total acres buildable

avg lot size?2.277.0910.7117.7125.8131.4044.0088.86
maximum added houses?650104272837241331426412445027

under current law


likely new houses ??

RA 1 with a House183333781582222625

total acres buildable

avg lot size0.732.326.0011.8017.1326.0032.5045.5097.50
maximum added houses02602821621295063891931228

under current law


likely new houses ??

Total Parcels73070522583291812816391

Friday, November 17, 2006

Red Ledges requests Heber Annexation

Despite the 4-3 approval for a Zone change from the County Planning Commission, the Red Ledges apparently has decided to request annexation to Heber City.

"Todd Cates/Lauren Knowles – Annexation Petition – Red Ledges Recreation Community – Consisting of 1,515.73 Acres and located at approximately 2300 East to 3600 East Lake Creek Road on the northern side of Lake Creek Road" Heber City Council agenda 11/16/2006

The City Council gave their preliminary OK and advised them to continue with their submission to the Heber City Planning Commission.

This might be an excellent time to review the Joint County/City meeting of August 14, 2006. A paraphrased transcript may be found on this blog dated 9/16/2006. Better yet, a podcast of that entire meeting can be heard by clicking here or here and then click on the download link.

Saturday, August 05, 2006

Land Use Survey - from Sep 2000

I'm certain there will be those that say the anonymous, open to anyone, survey is not "scientific" or does not really indicate what the Wasatch County residents REALLY want. However, it is quite consistent with other measured barometers of public opinion. Anyone remember the Asphalt Plant hearings or the Airport Expansion.

Prior to the 2001 General Plan a survey was done for the county by BYU.

The current survey is quite consistent with the BYU survey's results. Excerpts:
"72% . . favor slow to negative population growth. Economically there is greater sentiment in favor of slow to moderate growth. There is little sentiment in favor of rapid growth on either population or economic dimensions."

When residents were asked to rate their satisfaction with their community - 45% highly and 28% satisfied. When asked for "Preference for Community Change" 61.6% said it was "absolutely essential" to keep "The Way It Is." (76.5 % serious+)

Other serious "Preference for Community Change" were 89% Protect Air and Water quality, 82% Enforce Zoning & Land Use, 82% protect wetlands, 72% agricultural community,

"In general, the majority of respondents favor keeping at least 75% of the unincorporated areas of the county as open space." "There is very little sentiment favoring large scale developments of any of the areas." (defined as County, North Fields, South Fields, Provo River, Snake Creek, Round Valley, Woodland, Lake Creek)

In 2000, respondents were asked about "Problem Areas Five Years From Now." The number one problem - "Excessive Residential Development" 80% said it would be a serious problem; 80% also listed Traffic. Over 60% were concerned about excessive COMMERCIAL development. Have we solved those problem or fulfilled the prediction?

"The majority prefer that both the Master Plan and the zoning ordinance be changed in minor way to refine them. A large majority (over 30%) would like to have them both revised extensively to make the more restrictive."

How have we done in abiding by the desires of the residents? For any wishing to read the entire report, I'm sure you can find it on some dusty shelf or archive in a government office.

Survey Comments - Define Rural

These are VERBATIM comments submitted be survey participants:

3. Please define "rural" in respect to growth in Wasatch County.
Property used for livestock or crops.
Generally Farms and ranches intermixed with low density housing. With recognition that some very limited areas will need to be set aside for affordable housing.
open space
the areas surrounding provo River that has not been developed but is now in horse farms and meadows. Use the hillsides and East of Heber for development but keep the areas between Heber and Midway green.
low housing density, large open spaces
Robust agriculture thrives on a siginficant portion of the county's inhabited land. Large tracks of open, virgin, untouched forest and brush land where wild life florishes.
Agricultural land interspersed with residentual. Limited (be careful of the big box business) although I enjoy shopping at them, "rural" is the opposite of their nature.
Wasatch County has already defined it----it is one home per acre in a subdivision and one for every five acres outside of a subdivision. Does the public keep having to remind you in the face of the barrage of developer pressure?
you can see and smell the cows
small town feel. Knowing that big stores, some services will not be available. Slow growth, open spaces, animal rights on some property. Lack of big developments. Government that assists us in keeping the small town feel, a government that does not feel like they need to provide all the services of a big city. Keeps costs in check.
Wasatch County up to 5-7 years ago
Definable communities with open space seperating them so they don't all run together. A community where their is a sense of belonging and knowing your neighbors.
Even if hard to define, we know it when we see it - and where we are going is not rural!
Use a formula of present developable acreage in the county divided by the present population = persons per acre, and do not allow future development to increase this factor and to only allow new developments to sustain growth to a predetermined build out date.
Homes that have more than 5 acres or farming area for either food or animals
Open Fields, such as a farming comunity, along with areas that might have small 5 acre homesteads.
We need to keep the open field/space feeling. Keep some breathing room, and recreation and horse property.
Designated open space that the taxpayers have to bond for to purchase from the farmers. Keep North Fields WETLANDS regardless of a new septic system being approved. Cluster lots to allow open space. No one wants to water and maintain a 1 acre lot that's not horse property.
To many fields disappearing into subdivisions. I can't go four wheeling anywhere we used to just a few short years ago.
Open space in neighborhoods and in areas throughout the community. Clustering is probab;y a good idea.
People in rural areas live on farms and in other isolated houses
Rural is being able to sit on your back porch with an unobstructed view of the country-side be it mountains or fields instead of an ocean of homes. Rural is not being able to see what your neighbors are having for dinner. I have been there and done that.
Many open fields, many containing animals
Out side of the city limits, usually with a small farm, cows, chickens, etc.
slow responsible growth based on needs and not on money. Rural is open spaces, homes on large lots. People with animals. Small businesses. views from the hillsides and views of the hillsides that are open and uncluttered.
Websters defines "rural" as "sparsely settled or agricultural country". To apply that to planning and zoning regularions in the County, some portion of space, i.e., 35%, 40%, perhaps even 50%, within the County needs to be reserved or designated as "sparsely populated agricultural" space. A portion of this "rural" space could, and should, be the hills sides, but a major portion should also be the flatlands, that could feasibly be considered agricultural.
more open space in developments- not so condensed
rural to me means open space used for agriculture and animals such as horse pastures. It can mean large 5 acre lots or if smaller, open space for parks, etc.
Rural in respect to growth in Wasatch County appears to include building construction on any site in the county that has a willing seller and a willing buyer.
Rural=pasture land or farming land with a home or two on a minimum of 5 acre parcels.
Maintain the horse/pasture land as you enter from the North. This really sets up a "rural" feel for the valley.
a country lifestyle (this includes open space, right to have animals/livestock, room for large gardens or farmland). Wife says "wildlife habitat" should be included here; husband disagrees; he feels open space covers "wildlife."
No stop lights anywhere but main, no shopping on 12th S. east of Heber, or on Center East of Heber. At least half of the existing farms east and west of 40 remain in agrucultural use or open space.
Lots of pasture land, open fields. Few ammenities such as sidewalks and Wal-Mart.
rural signifies property not immediately bordering a major housing development
Rural is a small town or small farming community.
Rural was when it was farm land. We are no longer rural in the sense of agricultrural dependency but rather gentlemen farmers or back yard farmers. Our land is used to house families and recreational animals tho ride on trails rather than pl;ow the fields. Times have changed and we are that change.
There no longer is "rural" in the unincorporation areas of Wasatch County.
Wasatch county is rural in the sense that the streets do not have side walks and the road ways are narrower than Salt Lake. We are rural in the fact that people own horses and cows and you can hear a rooster crow. We are rural that we know the difference between a rooster and a hen.
For a metropolitan dweller Wasatch County is frightening and way too far removed from civilization. It is all in the eye of the beholder. We are rural because we board our own animals.
Rural means you can't see or smell what your neighbor is having for dinner
Being rural means you are from a small school and have to go to town to get a bigger selection of goods and services.
Houses on farms or ranches. Not PUDs.
My definition of rural is the way this town was before Lynn Adams sold us down the river.
There is no rural any more. Not the same place I grew up in.
Homes with 5 + acres.
Where farmland, houses, and animals coexist. Not where farm land gets filled in with huge homes with big driveways.
Rural is going to no more at the rate of growth Im seeing. Small town businesses that are unique to our area. Specialty shops, we dont need big box stores!
where ther are no subdivisions, and there are at least 5 acre lots for each house.
Farmland/ space in between homes / livestock
Rural to me means that there is more land in agriculture than in residential areas and that people are more concerned about their natural resources than shopping and eating out and driving fast.
open space,large building lots,trees,streams,
WE all ahave to know and understand we are growing planing is MOST inportant and staying wirh the plan after it is made we can not have a plan with out a vision and we did that in 2001 and then it was changed. So lets all get on the some page.
To maintain its rural character, Wasatch County MUST preserve the open spaces between municipalities. This includes both the North and South Fields as well as the traditional agricultural activities connected to them. This must be based on something more tangible than a "gentelman's agreement." If we value the rural character of the valley, we must do what we can to preserve it. If growth is inevitable, we should not assume that well-managed growth comes along with it automatically. I'd rather end up looking like Jackson Hole (managed growth)than Park City (overdeveloped); or Ogden Valley (still essentially rural) rather than Star Valley (haphazard planning).
We need to keep the wetlands and some open spaces, that is why many of live here and/or have choosen to move here.
"rural" should mean larger parcels, and less density
Open space--Farm land and ect..
can't see neighbors or hear traffic
You can see wife next door taking a shower
the sound of crowing roosters in the morning
Have balance between endless, cluttered subdivisions and pastures, agriculture and openess.
Rural means agriculture and open space are apparent

Friday, July 14, 2006

Another Moratorium!!!

Lo and behold, Wasatch County has discovered that the "solution" to the previous moratorium was unworkable and another moratorium has been enacted at the Wednesday Council meeting 7/12.

Trying not to gloat, I'll simply refer the reader to this posted on Feb 22.

Citizens of Wasatch have another opportunity to speak up about growth - if they will take it. Otherwise, I fear more of the same - or even worse.

Wasatch County Population 2005 - 18,974

Projection based on already approved developments - at very conservative 8.000 approved (probably 9 to 10,000) - add another 24,000 to 30,000 plus all of the other developments not yet introduced.

Thursday, July 13, 2006

More Developments - Pre 2003

Many of these developments were approved by the old County Commissioners prior to the cahnge of government. Some of partially complete, most are still waiting for who knows what.

At an average of merely 3 persons per Household, these 7600 ERU's could account for 22,800 people in Wasatch County. (Many may be secondary homes, which are generally an economic benefit to the county.)

pre 2003North Villageestimated1000
pre 2003Sorensonestimated1000
pre 2003Beaufontaine1600 E Lake Ck Rd.estimated100
Nov 2002Crossings(150 shown above)538336
2005Strawberry Pines3161002
pre 2003Cobblestone1200 Ssome remaining12798
pre 2003Lake Creek FarmsWild Maresome remaining
pre 2003Greener Hills
pre 2003Victory Ranchestimated1000
pre 2003Aspens at Jordanelle1348
pre 2003Tuhayeestimated600
pre 2003Hideout Canyonestimated100
Midway ???
Heber City???
Aug 2006Red Ledges14681900
Aug 2006Spring Hollow3200 E Lk Ck1926
Aug 2006The Woods600 S 2200 ECobblestone912