Rules for PUDs likely to become more precise |

Rules for PUDs likely to become more precise

Terri Harber
Appeal Staff Writer

After recently approving some housing plans that allow for little common open space, some Carson City officials want rules to govern these types of projects.

The Board of Supervisors is expected to approve an ordinance focusing on characteristics of planned-unit developments during their meeting Thursday.

“It’ll make our projects better,” said Mayor Marv Teixeira. “This way it’s going to be more consistent.”

For example, Teixeira opposed the hotly contested Clearview Ridge, a planned-unit development approved late last year in South Carson City that would contain 75 single-family homes within less than four acres.

Planning commissioners didn’t recommend the project to the supervisors. Open space was strewn throughout the development instead of concentrated to allow for a variety of uses. Traffic circulation and parking for a project with roughly 20 homes per acre were also considered inadequate, for example.

“Now (the city) won’t allow some of the things in there,” Teixeira said.

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A planned-unit development is described as a single entity created using a plan that does not correspond in “lot size, bulk or type of dwelling, density, lot coverage and required open space to the regulations established in any one residential district created” under provisions of any ordinance, according to state code.

Some of the ideas come from “actual feedback we’ve gotten” from officials, developers and residents, said Lee Plemel, the city’s principal planner.

A planning commissioner suggested adding detached housing because it would provide more space, for instance. Units would be spread out differently than is sometimes the case now, Plemel said.

“We’re not trying to tell anyone how to design the project, but it will set some parameters,” he said. “There will still be alternatives.”

Local rules for planned-unit developments have been around since the early 1990s. This would be the first overhaul of code.

Many projects are filling holes within the city where other structures used to be. The idea is to cluster units together and allow for ample areas within the site that could be shared by residents, such as small parks or recreational areas, Plemel said.

The clustering isn’t so tight that it exceeds overall density assigned to a specific piece of land. Common open space developments also are part of this rules overhaul, Plemel added.

• Contact reporter Terri Harber at tharber or 882-2111, ext. 215.

If you go

WHAT: Carson City Board of Supervisors meeting

WHEN: 8:30 a.m. Thursday

WHERE: Sierra Room, Carson City Communty Center, 851 E. William St.