Park planning commission recommends property rezone
By Brad Plothow
February 3, 2006 | HYDE PARK –
The city Planning and Zoning Commission on Wednesday
voted unanimously to approve residential zoning for
a segment of land near 100 West and 600 South streets,
but the vote was contingent on an agreement for how
water and sewer would be financed.
"Personally, I feel like it's
fine for it to be rezoned as long as there's an agreement,"
Commissioner David James said.
Prior to the 4-0 vote, James suggested
that the Commission could pay for the infrastructure
extension if it could recoup the money in the future.
James said the City Council, which detailed its budget
in a meeting last week, didn't have any provisions for
such a project.
Bill Bertolio – a representative
from Horizon Enterprises, Inc., which was contracted
to develop the land – agreed with the commission's
motion to move ahead pending the funding agreement.
"That way you won't get the
cart before the horse, but it gives us something to
work with," said Bertolio, who later apologized for
how his firm handled past projects. "If you're ready
to give us the go-ahead, we'll begin working on a concept."
Discussion on the rezoning request
lasted for about 45 minutes, as commissioners hashed
out their concerns about developing the property.
Commissioner Jan Hale agreed that
a funding contract needed to precede any actions to
build infrastructure or develop the land.
"I don't like surprises anymore
than anyone else," she said. "I think we need to have
a clear idea beforehand."
James was concerned with designating
where the funding would come from, as well as how much
the Commission or city would be willing to pay contractors.
"That's the rules. We don't
continue negotiating back and forth on who owes what,"
James said. "I don't believe from this side of the desk
that it's the city's job to fork out whatever amount
of money a developer wants."
James also wanted to have a road
near the proposed development widened, because "it's
a known safety hazard."
"If you drive two big pickup
trucks, you wonder if you're going to make it past,"
James said. "Something's got to be done with that road."
Bertolio spent several minutes apologizing
to the commission for what he called "miscommunications"
in past projects handled by Horizon, but he didn't elaborate.
"There were some problems in
the last project we did, and I take my share of the
responsibility for that," Bertolio said. "I apologize
for anyone's feelings I hurt. Please don't hold judgment
on me for the past."