As of December 2008 there were 11,447 parcels in recorded subdivisions in the county (including subdivisions in the cities), on 25,990 acres of land.*
In terms of current developments pending before the county, there are approximately 7,124 units pending on 24,179 acres of land in the unincorporated county.**
Even if just the pending lots in the unincorporated county are approved, that would represent a 62 percent increase in total number of units/lots and a 93 percent increase in total acreage in developments. (VARD is working on getting accurate numbers for the numbers of lots and acreage pending in subdivisions in the cities, which will only push the percentage increase numbers higher.)
As of December 2008, the projects pending before the county break down as follows:
41 development applications at concept plan stage
23 development applications at preliminary plan stage
9 development applications at final plan stage
11 final developments approved but not yet recorded***
According to the Hofman report from July 29, 2008, a land use survey found 2,454 dwelling units in Teton County, Idaho, of which 1,852 dwelling units are in the unincorporated county outside the cities’ areas of impact.**** This means that of the 11,447 subdivision parcels recorded in the county, at most only 21 percent (or roughly 1 in 5) lots are currently built upon. In reality some of those dwelling units are outside of subdivisions so the percentage of subdivision units built on is actually less than 21 percent.
Bottom line: what we see on the ground in Teton Valley today is only a fraction of the development in the planning stages. Given the scope of pending development in relation to what already exists, the proposals in the pipeline will have a huge impact on the future face of the valley.
Therefore the role of VARD in evaluating proposed developments and advocating for responsible growth and protection of natural resources and vibrant city centers is more vital than ever. How the current economic slowdown will affect the pace at which planned developments get built or whether they get built at all, remains to be seen. As we head into 2009, VARD will continue to serve as a resource to the residents and decision-makers of Teton County so that we can make informed decisions about our future.
* Teton County GIS Department
**Teton County Planning Department
***Planning Administrator’s December report to the Board of County Commissioners
****Hofman Associates – consultants for the county on the Capital Improvements Plan and Impact Fees