Master plan debate resumes next week |

Master plan debate resumes next week

If county commissioners decide to overturn their Aug. 6 decision to move receiving area from Topaz Ranch Estates, they are probably going to have to reconsider an agreement with Park Ranch Holdings.

Approval of the maps that included moving 1,044 acres of receiving area on Park Property was an amendment of the master plan.

Because the Aug. 6 action doesn’t actually take effect until after commissioners accept a planning commission report on the decision on Sept. 5, there is an opening to reconsider the plan.

However, because two planning commissioners were absent from the Aug.. 13 meeting, the report reflects the 3-2 vote the county board took in favor of the changes.

Planning Commissioner Devere Henderson said he would have been opposed to the action, while Planning Commission Chairwoman JoEtta Brown voted for the plans without the swap.

Opponents say the county failed to properly notice the Aug. 6 meeting.

If that’s true, the commission would have to redo the action.

Receiving area is the universal donor of zoning and allows any density up to 16 units per acre as long as the property owner brings development rights from property the county wants to protect.

The Parks would also be subject to the county’s building permit cap, with was approved in 2007.

On Sept. 5, commissioners can either accept a final report from the Planning Commission finalizing the adoption of Resolution 2019R-039 or, alternatively, receive and file the Planning Commission’s report and rescind Resolution 2019R-039, and direct the Community Development Department to re-agendize the Douglas County 20-Year Master Plan Update. The Board could also discuss the possible reconsideration of the Park Ranch Holdings development agreement.

The agenda for next week’s meeting will be available Friday morning online at

County Manager Patrick Cates told members of the Carson Valley Chamber of Commerce the county has an obligation to update the master plan. Originally approved in 1996, the 20-year update was derailed in January 2018 and the county has been trying to put it back on track.

Cates said what Muller Parkway will look like when it’s built is still open for discussion, its construction will be important.

He said there’s a possibility that the county won’t have to pay the entire bill for building the Parkway, which is estimated at $12-14 million for two lanes.

“What it’s going to look like is open for discussion. There are multiple plans but we’re looking at a two-lane road,” Cates said. “As things get built out there’s possibilities to look at developers so taxpayers aren’t going to be footing the whole bill. Some of the high level reasons that what we put forward was well thought out.”

Dallaire pointed out that with the previous receiving area in TRE, the Parks could have sought up to 16,000 units on that property.

With the agreement, the Parks are limited to 2,500 units, which could take many forms.

Dallaire said the dedication of right of way includes a dozen acres.

In answer to criticism that there are too many connections on Muller Lane Parkway, Dallaire pointed out there are 35 intersections on Highway 395, not counting the many driveways that open on the road through the towns.

He said by his estimate there are around 19 connections to Muller Parkway.

Construction of the Parkway will require construction of diversion ponds, either in the Pine Nuts or on the ranch land closer to town.

Dallaire said the material excavated from those ponds will be used to build Muller Lane Parkway if it’s suitable.

He said that would keep truck traffic off the public roads. If the county can’t or doesn’t use the fill for the parkway from the ponds, material will have to be trucked into the county, increasing costs.