The Schulz Ranch development - a 521 home development in South Carson - was approve Thursday by a unanimous vote of the Carson City Board of Supervisors.
The primary issues raised were whether the parks in the project were large enough - which was the basis for opposition by one member of the planning commission - and what to do about concerns form the Washoe Tribe that the development would greatly increase traffic down Center Drive through Stewart.
Parks Director Roger Moellendorf assured the board the parks have been carefully reviewed and that the design before them "is a very well-done plan."
Mark Rotter, spokesman for developers Reynen & Bardis Communities, said the development will work either with Center Drive open or closed and that decision is up to the city and the tribe.
Tribal officials prefer closing the road saying Head Start day care and other children's centers the tribe depends on are located there and they don't want small children exposed to increased traffic.
But supervisors Shelly Aldean and Robin Williamson expressed concern about closing the roadway.
City Engineer Larry Werner and tribal lawyer Tim Seward told the board they have made great progress in working out the tribe's issues and can bring a proposed agreement to the next board of supervisors meeting.
The project is designed with 521 homes in five neighborhoods clustered around a central neighborhood park of just fewer than four acres. There are also two detention basins that will be used as parks at the opposite ends of the project.
The neighborhoods will be built on 126 acres between Northern Nevada Correctional Center's prison farm and the Washoe Tribe's land along Carson City's southern border. The property is owned by several private owners including the Schulz family. Part of the property was once occupied by Champion Speedway.
Community Development Director Walt Sullivan said large lots of a half-acre or more are located along the outside of the development to ease the transition from one-acre lots in the area to the denser subdivision plan in the interior of the project.
The project includes more than 100 small homes described by developers as "entry homes" for younger families buying their first house. Developers said those will probably sell in the "mid-200s."
Just before the final vote to approve, Mayor Marv Teixeira asked what the developers would do to ensure the houses are sold to people who plan to live in them instead of investors who would just rent them all out.
Ted Arkan, division president for Reynen & Bardis, said they make every effort to "screen out the investor buyer."
"We build communities," he told the board. "We don't build rental communities."
n Contact reporter Geoff Dornan at firstname.lastname@example.org or 687-8750.
In other business
The Carson City Board of Supervisors gave the OK for the city's water utility to purchase up to 611 acre feet of water rights from the Schulz Family in south Carson City. The cost will be $8,000 per acre foot - which is less than one-third the cost of water rights in surrounding communities. Werner told the board this purchase should give Carson City all the water it needs to serve the capital city's projected maximum population of 75,000.
"After this, we're done," he said.