Town nixes high density housing subdivision
60-acre subdivision proposed 1/2 mile south of Pinedale
November 15, 2005
Despite all the hub-bub about needing high-density housing in close proximity to the town of Pinedale, the Pinedale Town Council voted Monday night to recommend against approving the development of a new subdivision one half mile south of Pinedale.
Developer Jack Richardson is proposing a new subdivision on 60 acres just south of the Pinedale sewage lagoons. The parcel of land is just east of Tyler Avenue. Pine Creek borders the subdivision on the east side. The subdivision proposal includes a mixture of lots ranging from .25 acre to 2 acres, with no more than 144 lots in the development.
The development proposal was designed to take advantage of the new county zoning that allows small lots within a 1 mile radius of a town. The smaller lots are intended to create lower priced lots for more affordable housing. Subdivision plans include a centralized park area and school bus pickup point for school children in the subdivision to keep young children away from busy traffic on Tyler Avenue.
Because the proposed development is out of the Pinedale town limits, the Pinedale Planning and Zoning Board and Town Council have no final say in the approval or denying the subdivision. However, because the subdivision is within one mile of the town limits and will impact town services, the developer must present the project proposal to the Town in order to make them aware of the project and solicit their input. The Town can then give a recommendation to the county on the project. The zoning request change and subdivision approval will be decided by the County Commissioners.
Several neighbors who live adjacent to the proposed subdivision attended Monday’s Pinedale Town Council meeting to speak in opposition of the subdivision proposal. Residents cited negative changes to the quality of life in their existing rural neighborhood, increased traffic, possible noise problems due to barking dogs and needed road improvements on Tyler Avenue. Residents are finding themselves in the position of many others who bought property on the outskirts of town in the past twenty years and now see their rural subdivisions being surrounded by new housing developments and roads that cannot be built fast enough to accommodate the need for more housing in the county.
Tyler Avenue is a main residential arterial for south Pinedale residents to access downtown Pinedale and US Highway 191. It is also used heavily by oil and gas industry workers on the Mesa to get into town. Plans are in the works to realign portions of the road and to address the issue of heavy truck traffic, however the changes have not yet been made. The road issue was the main deciding factor for the Town Council with regard to this subdivision proposal.
After a lengthy debate, the Pinedale Town Council voted 4-0 to recommend to the county that they not approve the development until the traffic problems on Tyler road can be fixed. It was not clear whether the proposal would now go to the county.