Changes allowing development of O’Callaghan Ranch OK’d |

Changes allowing development of O’Callaghan Ranch OK’d

Karen Woodmansee
Appeal Staff Writer

Another Dayton Valley ranch is headed down the road to development.

The Lyon County Planning Commission has approved a master plan amendment and zone change to allow a low- to moderate-density development along Fort Churchill Road. The development, called Aspen Creek, would be on portions of the 2,096-acre O’Callaghan Ranch, which is now designated as open space.

If approved by the county commissioners, 248.6 acres would be approved for medium density, or 12,000-square-foot lots, and 498.7 acres could be used for low density, or five- and 10-acre parcels. An additional 1,349 acres would remain open space.

The zoning will change from a 20-acre minimum to allow for the 12,000- square-foot, five-acre and 10-acre parcels.

The planning commission approved the change with the stipulation that all parcels between Fort Churchill Road and the river be 10-acre parcels.

Carol Dotson, senior project manager for Lakemont Communities, stressed the developer wanted to maintain the agricultural heritage as much as possible.

“It will preserve the open space, access to the river,” she said. “And we want to assure preservation of the ranch as history.”

The property has agricultural tax deferrals attached to it, which will become due when the land use changes, said Rob Loveberg, Lyon County Planning director.

The Riverpark development adjoins the parcel at the western edge, and that property is zoned for 12,000-square-foot lots, Loveberg said.

Loveberg opposed any development in the floodway of the Carson River, and said he had concerns about development in the wider flood plain, which reached to Fort Churchill Road.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency allows no new developments in floodways, and only with modifications on a flood plain. Only the 10-acre parcels are expected to be in the flood plain.

“Continued growth makes ranching very difficult,” Dotson said, though she said 120 acres will still be left in cultivation. “The growth encroachment to the west is consistent with our development.”

• Contact reporter Karen Woodmansee at or 882-2111 ext. 351.