Grand County Planning Commission Meeting Report 2020-09-28

The Hwy 313/191 Small Area Plan discussion and drafting continued. Public hearings were held on a 1) rezone application for a split-zoned parcel on Hwy 191 and 2) a Planned Unit Development (PUD) amendment on Creekside Lane.

Hwy 313/191 Small Area Plan


  • The ridgeline/viewshed standards were discussed, as were maximum height (15′) for buildings within viewshed of the highway
  • The building standards applicable to overnight accommodations, such as site configuration, building design, materials and color were generally agreed upon for developments in the SAP, with additional restrictions for reflective rooftops and a requirement that buildings “blend in” with surroundings.

After compiling input from today’s meeting, the final draft will go to the county attorney for legal review; then Planning Commission will hold a public hearing tentatively scheduled for October 26. The Grand County Commission will hold an additional public hearing on the SAP, tentatively set for November 17.

Application to rezone split-zoned property (RR and HC) located at 1490 S Highway 191 to Highway Commercial.

The property (2 acres) has been used for commercial purposes for many years, and is now for sale. It is currently split-zoned due to the county’s delineation of the highway commercial zone as all lands w/in 300 ft. of Hwy 191 – regardless of property boundaries. The property is close, but not adjacent to, the future USU campus. Of note is that Moab City’s general plan identifies this property for future annexation into the City’s C4 zone. If annexed, the entire property would become commercial. There are two residential properties to the south of this parcel, currently being used as single family residential.

  • Adjacent property owners opposed rezoning the entire parcel as HC, and urged PC to not rezone the entire back lot from RR to HC. They noted that the back lot is more in keeping with the neighborhood character if zoned as RR. Neighbors do not want a big commercial development right next door to their homes.
  • Bob noted that many lots are split-zoned and often the property can be developed using both zones, and split-zoning is not necessarily a reason to rezone.
  • Gerrish expressed concerns about expanding commercial uses into residential area, and not convinced there’s a compelling reason to rezone the entire parcel as HC.
  • Emily clarified for concerned neighbors that the OAO (overnight accommodation overlay) is NOT a use by right. IF the new owner wanted to apply for the OAO, the proposal would require a public hearing and decision by the GC Commission.
  • Bryon noted that this rezone could set a precedent for other split-zoned parcels. But added that if a USU campus is eventually built in this area, the parcel would be situated to provide beneficial commercial services.

Motion to send a favorable recommendation for a rezone of this 2 acre split-zoned property to the GC Commission: 3-2-1. yay (Emily, Bob, Bryon); nay (Kevin and Gerrish), abstained (Josie). [Rachel was absent].

Application for a rezone to change the minimum lot size for Phase II of the Creekside Planned Unit Development (PUD) located at 3373 S Creekside Lane, from 1.0 to 0.3 acres.

Creekside Estates PUD was originally approved for 12 lots in 1997. Six were platted at that time in Phase I with lot size of 1.0 acre. Creekside Estates PUD allows for 6 lots to be developed in Phase II of the development. Under current PUD rules, these lots can be smaller than the underlying zone allows (i.e. 1 acre lots in RR) if no increase in underlying density. The applicant has proposed 6 lots on 6.48 acres, which complies with current PUD rules. The original plat from 1997 stipulates minimum lot sizes of 1 acre, which the applicant would like to change. [Editor’s note: This PUD was approved prior to the current LUC requirement of a PUD master plan at time of approval. The plat is being used as a stand-in for a master plan.]

  • This is a major PUD change, and pursuant to GC’s LUC, it is treated as a zone change.
  • Staff, applicant and members of the PC agree that the proposed change would not increase total density; 6 lots on 6.48 acres.
  • The proposed plat change would cluster the lots in the NW corner of the PUD.
  • The existing CCRs for Phase I do not appear to apply to Phase II. Staff noted that even though it’s not the County’s duty to enforce CCRs for HOAs, the County does not have an interest in approving proposals that would conflict with CCRs.

Comments from several neighbors included:

  • They had not received the notice letter in the mail for the rezone
  • The decision should be postponed to provide more time to gather info and understand the rezone request.
  • The setbacks on the new plat do not comply with county setback requirements or the CCR setback requirements.
  • Not opposed to development of 1 dwelling on 1 acre lot, but the smaller lot size is not in keeping with character of neighborhood.

Staff clarified that PUDs are allowed to cluster developments and do not require “open space.” Generally “open space” in intended to mean an area open to the public, not just a larger lot with one dwelling.

PC members were concerned that approving the proposed PUD amendment (making lots sizes 0.3 acre rather than 1 acre) without a master plan would possibly allow the applicant to reconfigure the lots that are currently shown on the amended plat map, to something that PC members would view less favorably. The absence of a master plan is a concern – even though a master plan was not required for approval of the PUD in 1997.

Motion to make favorable recommendation on rezone subject to the following 2  conditions: 1) that preliminary plat as presented today become the master plan and 2) the exterior boundaries comply with the RR 25′ setback (or the adjacent HOA setbaks on the south boundary). Approved 5-1 (Gerrish voting no; Rachel absent)

Future Considerations

Kevin noted that the PC had previously discussed cleaning up the Land Use Code (LUC) to address the conditional uses that remain in the LUC. There have been court cases that appear to require more fact finding and that a denial must be supported by language in the LUC. PC agreed that Kevin should research the conditional use issue and suggest language for the LUC at next meeting.