Driggs Planning & Zoning continues The Edge
This was originally proposed as a 65-unit multiplex infill project just west of the high school on the corner of 5th and Ross in Driggs. The location is great for a high-density infill project to provide walk-able housing if the time and investment is put into the landscape and design to create attractive, high-quality housing. Several neighbors submitted letters and testimony in opposition to this development citing their traffic concerns because this development would be located on a skewed intersection, sharing 5th street with both the high school and middle school. They wondered if buildings only 10-feet apart would pose a fire hazard, and they expressed concern that these 65 low-end units would become a "defacto ghetto" right next to the schools.
P&Z decided that they would not consider the entire 65-unit master plan, because the project was not ripe for entitling that many units in the proposed multi-plex layout. This was a good decision because no traffic studies or other impact studies have been completed yet. There has also been little to no involvement with the affordable housing commission or the school district – and they should certainly provide input for this kind of project. Instead, P&Z focused their review on only the 5-units proposed in phase 1, abutting Ross Avenue. The application was tabled for the city to review the safety concerns with the skewed intersection. P&Z may also need to revisit the safety concerns with the back-out driveway design of these 5 units since they are located on a busy street right next to a very busy intersection. It may also be necessary to eliminate 1 unit in order to straighten out the intersection. And finally, it would be prudent for the City to request comments from both the housing authority and the school district.