Grand County Planning Commission Meeting Report 2020-08-10

Discussion of Hwy 313/191 Small Area Plan and Survey

Almost 400 people have responded to the Planning Commission’s survey regarding future development of the Hwy 313/191 area (i.e. area in the vicinity of the turn-off to Dead Horse Point State Park and Island in the Sky). Overwhelmingly, respondents want the area to stay essentially as it is now. The majority of respondents favor preserving the natural environment and scenic beauty of the gateway to our community. There is strong support for minimal development; and strong opposition to any new nightly rentals (motels, condos or RV parks), dense development and most commercial development.  Although the majority wanted little if any new developments in the area, the following got some support IF future developments are allowed: public parking area; outdoor education schools/facilities, museums, and restaurants – but only with stringent restrictions for height, density and night lighting, and requirements for topographical or other screening to protect the scenic and undeveloped character.

If folks want to retain the generally undeveloped character and outstanding-by-any-standard scenic views of this area, take the survey and make your opinion known. The survey will be available for a while longer at this link.

Subdivision and HDHO for 1278 San Juan Drive

Community Rebuilds submitted an application for High Density Housing Overlay-10 (HDHO-10) and a variance in setback to 15′ to subdivide a single 0.26 acre lot into two lots for two Community Rebuilds homes of 1000 sq. ft. and 1200 sq. ft. This will not change allowed density, since ADU (accessory dwelling unit) is allowed, but the subdivision would allow each home to have separate owners. A buffer variance of for 15′ project setback was also requested as the HDHO outside buffer is 20′ on all sides (as it was envisioned for larger HDHO developments). If buffer variance not approved, the # of bedrooms/home would likely need to be reduced, and would possibly not meet the needs of Community Rebuilds’ applicants.

Planning Commission voted 6-0 (Gerrish absent) to send a favorable recommendation to the County Council. (This includes approval of setback variance.)

Future Considerations

The Chair noted that there were other small area plans that had been discussed with the county council, including the airport area and Crescent Junction area and PC should check with the county council re its priority to have PC move forward with these.

Staff mentioned a couple gaps in the Land Use Code – including B&B regulations and outdoor education overnight facilities regulations – noting preference to get county council direction so PC could address these.

County Council Action Items

Peak View HDHO Phase I (on north side of Rim Village on S. Spanish Valley Dr) approved by county council after developers agreed to county’s position of not holding taxpayers liable for future damages on 3rd party property due to developer’s stormwater drainage onto that property. Developer ultimately agreed to indemnify the 3rd party property owner.

Community Economic Development department and the Travel Council will be two divisions under one department director, temporarily, while the county organizational chart is being revamped. Elaine Gizler will be temporary director of this department in order to submit grant applications and comply with reporting deadlines.

County Council Update by Jaylyn Hawks

The council is interviewing for Planning Director position (Zacharia’s position which will be vacant as of end of August) on Thursday and Friday, and Emily, as chair of the PC, will be sitting in on the interviews.

Grand County had its first Covid19 death, 85 yr. old male.