Combs Canyon developers seek planning commission’s approval | NevadaAppeal.com

Combs Canyon developers seek planning commission’s approval

Terri Harber
Appeal Staff Writer

Developers of the proposed 78-unit Combs Canyon residential project are appealing the Planning Commission’s rejection of the plan to the Board of Supervisors on Thursday.

Commissioners voted unanimously to reject the development plan amid objections by residents and city staff – its density being chief among reasons. The homes within this gated community would be much smaller and closer together than those in other developments in the area.

Other criticisms of the development planned for 82 acres west of Combs Canyon Road and north of Timberline Drive include: traffic increases on curvy Combs Canyon and Lakeview roads, strong potential for flood and fire damage in the development area, and additional noise and pollution in an area affected by the Waterfall fire in 2004.

“The developers’ concept of lot size, construction materials, and home design – as well as lack of concern for off-site impacts on existing residents – are so far out of step with the neighborhood’s environmental and community aesthetic as to be obviously unreasonable,” wrote resident Fred Weldon.

Some opponents also noted the project might cause problems for the Western Nevada Community College’s Jack C. Davis Observatory because it is close to the site. The college takes no positions regarding development around its campus but does, however, encourage preservation of a dark night sky, according to Sean Sever, spokesman for the college.

The college itself has installed special light fixtures around the campus that concentrate light downward and minimize the amount of light glaring toward the sky, he said. The project is continuing as money becomes available.

“We feel the lighting benefits the community because the students will be able to see the stars and the Milky Way,” Sever said.

Several commission members also complained that the developers threatened the city with legal action in a bid to get the project OK’d. The developers have asserted that denying or delaying a project that includes “low-income housing” could subject the city to litigation because the move would violate the federal Fair Housing Act.

The city has said the developers’ plan for including low-income housing, however, remains “quite unclear.” And the repeated references to the possibility of litigation were described by one commissioner, Mark Kimbrough, as “what I felt was a threat.”

This is the developers’ last chance to obtain approval for the project. If the supervisors concur with the commissioners’ recommendation, the developers will have to modify their plan before they try again.

Another planned development also is on the supervisors’ agenda for this meeting: the Eagle Village Condominium Planned Development Unit, a 36-unit project to be north of Eagle Station Lane. Six out of seven commissioners recommended the proposal for approval.

n Contact reporter Terri Harber at harber@nevadaappeal.com or 882-2111, ext. 215.

If you go

WHAT: Carson City Board of Supervisors meeting

WHEN: 8:30 a.m. Thursday

WHERE: Sierra Room, Community Center, 851 William St.