Snyderville Basin Planning Commission initiates discussion to retain, remove or change growth policy
Policy 2.3 of the Snyderville Basin General Plan states that no new development can take place in the basin until existing development approvals are significantly exhausted – or unless there is a compelling public interest to add more density.
Summit County director of community development Pat Putt said it would be one of the planning commission’s most important discussions.
At Tuesday’s meeting, Putt said it was not possible to stop the growth, but today’s decisions will impact generations to come.
The key, said Putt, “will be as we move forward in the future, if we are to preserve as much as possible, we can these attributes of our community that we cherish ourselves as open space, recreation, business opportunities, we are going to have to be extremely careful about how and what decisions we make in the future, and how we manage future growth. It’s not about stopping growth. It’s about how we’re going to be successful in leading and managing it for the benefit of not only the people who are here now, but also the people who will be here in the future, in generations to come.
Views from the planning committee on Tuesday night ranged from removing the policy from the general plan to changing it to ensure it has the teeth it needs as growth pressures increase.
Commissioner John Kucera believes that the policy has been a tool that has served the basin well and has not limited development opportunities.
Commissioner Chris Conabee does not think the commission has enough facts or data to make good decisions in the future.
“I think we need to task our board with providing funding for a study that gives us, you know, our top five concerns, and what those issues looked like – everything from C02 emissions to traffic to, you know. , the eligibility of schools, the size of our schools, how many students we have, what is our population. What does our demographics look like for seniors and how do we take care of them? what our public transport looks like. It’s to fund a study that gives us those answers over a period of 5, 10, 15, 20 and 25 years, ”Conabee said.
Commissioner Ryan Dickey thinks he could support removing exceptions from Policy 2.3, but worries about the impact this might have on the need for affordable housing.
I think it’s foolish to think that we can get out of an affordable housing crisis by building a lot more market-priced housing to get those affordable housing slices, ”Dickey said. “When you build homes at market prices, you just increase the demand for workers. These people don’t just come here and work for a business, they create businesses, they create a demand for products and services. They are going to hire people. This only makes the problem worse, and I don’t see this as a solution in Park City, I think we should focus on other affordable housing strategies than just adding more and more density to the base. . And so, I really hesitate to use the exceptions to 2.3, even to build more affordable housing when paired with market-priced housing.
Planning Commission chairman Thomas Cooke said the planning commission should involve the public before making recommendations.
“We are talking about perhaps the biggest and most profound change in the general plan, or not, and we haven’t really reached out to the community and questioned again, engaged what these core values are,” said Cooke. “And, you know, if we don’t, then we can assume they haven’t changed a lot, but I think it probably changed a lot in my opinion.”
A public hearing on the subject will be set at a future planning committee meeting – possibly as early as October 26e.