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Planners discuss youth facilities, day-care space

By Amanda Hammon, Appeal Staff Writer

Fearing a Boys & Girls Club-type development appearing on a small lot next door, dozens of Carson City residents last month opposed plans for youth recreation facilities in some residential areas.

But Carson City planning officials are hoping to clear some of the confusion and concerns created by their efforts to redefine the single-family 6000 zone -- the zone in which most Carson residents live -- to include youth recreation facilities.

On Wednesday, planners will introduce a set of standards by which youth facilities would be allowed in the residential areas.

Carson Senior Planner Lee Plemel said planners ask for public comments on a proposal that youth facilities must be on at least five acres before they can build in the zone, among other proposed "performance standards" such as screening and setback requirements.

"Hopefully, that standard would eliminate the concern that some's neighbor is going to start a Boys & Girls Club at their house," Plemel said.

The change to the single-family zone comes at the request of The Boys & Girls Club of Western Nevada. Club officials purchased 17 acres off Lompa Lane where supporters plan to build a $2.25 million center for Carson youth. However, the current zoning won't allow the center on the property even though "single-family 6000 is where we need to be," said Cathy Blankenship, club executive director.

"That's where families who need our services are located," she said. "We need to be where the kids are."

Plemel said the property can't be zoned to a commercial use. The zone would accommodate the club, but it could also host dozens of other uses which wouldn't fit with neighborhood, which borders the future freeway on the east and is surrounded by homes and apartments on all other sides.

After Wednesday's meeting, planning officials are planning another public workshop before asking again for commission approval.

Planning commissioners also will discuss:

-- eliminating a rule that requires day-care facilities to be 500 feet apart. This issue will be discussed at 3:30 p.m. City supervisors in July asked planning commissioners to reconsider the rule after it stymied the efforts of a Roop Street day-care facility owner to relocate her business to her home. Day-care facilities are subject to the special-use permit process, which allows planning commissioners and supervisors to consider day-care facilities on a case-by-case basis.

Plemel said the rule was added in the 1990s to prevent neighborhoods from having too much traffic and noise from a proliferation of such facilities.

-- a 90-unit housing development that is planned on 19 acres in the Lakeview/Timberline area at 5:30 p.m. Residents there are opposed to the development's small lot size. Developers say it will be an upscale development that will preserve at least 77 percent of the 82-acre parcel as open space.


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