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Aspen View Subdivision Prelim Plat; Black Pine Subdivision Prelim Plat; Driggs Centre permit for building materials sales; MD Nursery CUP Application

At this hearing, the Planning & Zoning Commission recommended approval of two subdivisions totaling 12 lots situated on 31 acres.  

Aspen View Subdivision Preliminary Plat

This is a standard Ag2.5 subdivision totaling 4 lots on 10acres located near 150 South and 175 East. This subdivision was recommended for approval.

Black Pine Subdivision Preliminary Plat
This is a standard Ag2.5 subdivision totaling 8 lots on 21 acres just west of Felt on Wells Avenue. The new county engineer Louis Simonet expressed concern with the difficulty in snow storage created by the current design of the roads in this subdivision. VARD has many concerns with this development including the unique irrigation ditch features, road access concerns, and boundary line dispute with the neighbor to the west. The landowner must also obtain approval from the ditch owner before constructing any kind of bridge or relocation of the conduit.

VARD commented on the need for building envelopes to be platted all the way through to final recording to put potential buyers on notice that there are restrictions on the lots. While the county has a policy of recommending plats with outstanding litigation concerns (such as a boundary line dispute) VARD suggested exploring possible ordinances which would require all outstanding boundary and access issues to be resolved before they are reviewed by the county.

Driggs Centre Conditional Use Permit (CUP) Application

This application was for a CUP to run a building materials sales warehouse in the new Driggs Centre development located along 100 East, south of the transfer station.  Concerned residents commented on enforcement of this CUP: who will make sure that Driggs Centre complies with the terms of their CUP? The commission made it clear that the county Planning Administrator is in charge of enforcement, but he cannot be  everywhere at once. Thus, enforcement relies on concerned neighbors and residents notifying the Administrator of issues that need attention.

 The commission was concerned about the general appearance of this facility – what kind of mitigation would be done to ensure that the lot is not an eyesore? VARD commented on the importance of carefully stating the purpose and scope of each CUP application because it will pave the way for future uses of the site. VARD also suggested a few changes to the CUP application form which would help clarify this process and ensure that there is no miscommunication as to what uses are being permitted. This CUP was recommended for approval on the condition that certain mitigations are met so the property does not become an eyesore.   

MD Nursery CUP Application

MD Nursery withdrew its controversial conditional use permit (CUP) application just before the hearings were set to begin. MD Nursery’s attorney Sean Moulton submitted a letter to the commission which stated that (1) MD has not changed its “use” of the property since they first obtained their permit, and (2) the permit did not require them to get a review by the county before building 17,000 square feet of new space (which includes the new café.)  

The commission expressed great concern that MD had constructed this new building before obtaining all the appropriate permits and that their uses have expanded well beyond the scope of the original permit. VARD submitted Findings of Fact to the commission to make the point that the existing CUP was granted for a specific purpose (a garden store/nursery) and that all the new uses and construction are prohibited by the plain language of the permit unless approved by the county. The commission decided that MD cannot proceed without review by the county, and MD must submit a new CUP application because of all their new uses.

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