Tentative map for Andersen Ranch OK'd by supervisors

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The Board of Supervisors on Thursday gave the go-ahead to a new residential development on roughly 48 acres of Andersen Ranch between Mountain Street and Ormsby Boulevard.

The board approved a tentative subdivision map for Andersen Ranch Estates, a 203-lot development with several interior streets, walking paths, and open space.

The vote was 4-1 with Supervisor John Barrette voting no.

“I will be voting no; against this merely or almost entirely because of the roads,” said Barrette before the vote.

The roads, which will be built by the developer, will be public and Carson City will be responsible for maintaining them.

The board heard lengthy public comment from 15 people, including nearby residents who were divided on the project.

Those opposing the development spoke primarily about the lot sizes. The property is zoned single family 6,000 and 12,000, allowing 203 home lots as the plan calls for.

But, the developer, Christy Corp., is using a section of the municipal code, 17.10, that allows smaller lot sizes in exchange for open space. The lot sizes range from 5,000 square feet on the interior of the layout to primarily 7,700 square feet along the perimeter with about 20 lots between 8,000 and 14,930 square feet. The plan features about 7 acres of open space, including walking paths and detention basins as well as improvements at the Mountain Street trailhead, about seven times the 1.1 acre required by code.

“I am worried about the precedent we’re setting on the size of the lots, the proximity of the homes,” said LeAnn Saarem. “It is very misleading when people look at the master plan zoning and see 12,000 and 6,000, and 17.10 can be applied and so drastically change it.”

Mark Johnson, capital and special projects manager, Carson City School District, also spoke and encouraged the board to add an impact fee for schools.

CCSD estimates the development will add 63 students in various grades to the school system. Younger children would go to Fritsch Elementary, which is near capacity, and some older children would go to Carson Middle School, which is above capacity. CCSD plans to expand Eagle Valley Middle School in two years and redraw the districts to send more kids to the 5th Street middle school.

Total build out of the project will take four years, said Scott Christy, the developer.

The supervisors did not include an impact fee, but did add or modify several conditions of approval, including one to mitigate the problem of tumbleweed on the property.

Alicia Timoff, a neighbor, spoke and showed photos of her backyard full of tumbleweeds that had blown onto her property from the ranch.

“My biggest concern is requirement of a maintenance plan for the time between purchasing and owning it and breaking ground,” said Timoff.

The board added a condition that the property be mowed within 30 days of purchase and a firebreak created around the perimeter during the summer.

Supervisors Brad Bonkowski and Stacey Giomi and Mayor Bob Crowell said that the project did meet code, although Giomi said he agreed with Barrette about streets and planned to discuss the issue of accepting new roads at the upcoming board retreat.

“The issue for me becomes very black and white,” said Bonkowski. “We have a rule book in place so people who come to town to develop know what to expect. There is a process to change the rule book, but not in mid stream. This project is in compliance with the rule book in place.”


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