Archive for Thursday, February 5, 2009

Planners change platting approach

February 5, 2009

The Basehor Planning Commission is taking a different approach to one of the city’s newest projects.

The commission had a public hearing on Tuesday night concerning the preliminary plat requested by Benchmark Management for the property located at 15251 State Ave.

City Planning Director Dustin Smith and Benchmark Management owner Ed McIntosh spoke at the hearing to explain some of the plans for the State Avenue property.

The area consists of approximately 9.89 acres zoned as multifamily residential and divided into three lots. Lot 1 is 1.99 acres, Lot 2 is 2.75 acres, and Lot 3 is 4.3 acres.

Smith and McIntosh recommended that the entire property be platted in one phase and the street and storm improvements conducted in two phases.

“I want you to understand that this is something we don’t usually do,” Smith told the commissioners. “This new plan will require a variance as part of the final plat and construction approval.”

The developer requested to conduct the improvements in two phases to avoid having to construct all public improvements necessary for the entire area, including extending Pinehurst Drive to the eastern part of the property, which would be required under subdivision regulations if the property were not developed in phases.

Smith also said that the development of a sewer system plan would be tricky.

The preliminary plat calls for a lift station on the southeast corner of Lot 2. This lift station would accept sewer flows from Lots 1, 2 and 3 and pump the effluent to a manhole on Pinehurst Drive, where it would then flow by the force of gravity to the Pinehurst lift station.

The problem, Smith said, is that the Pinehurst lift station does not have the capacity necessary for this plan. Smith presented three solutions to the problem. The first is to flow the effluent by gravity to the U.S. Highway 24-40 lift station by boring a hole under the highway. The second solution is to pump the effluent to a manhole near Subway and into the 24-40 interceptor. The final solution is to engineer an on-site sewage system.

“The on-site sewage system is not very probable because of the scale of expected future development in the area,” Smith said.

Planning commissioner Jason Logsdon said that he would rather see a gravity-served sewer because of the money it would save the city.

“When you think about the cost of pumps and the maintenance of those pumps, it turns out to be far more costly than a gravity system.”

McIntosh said he agreed with Logsdon.

“I don’t want a pump, either,” McIntosh said. “It’s crazy to spend money that way. Our goal is to get gravity out there, but making that happen isn’t so easy.”

At the end of the hearing, the commission approved, 7-0, the preliminary plat that would start the process of developing a sanitary sewer system that was acceptable to the city staff and the city engineer. The plat will allow Benchmark to plat the entire property and to have building permits for Lots 1 and 2. No building permits will be issued for Lot 3 until Pinehurst Drive is fully constructed to the eastern most point of the plat. A variance was granted as part of the plat approval to defer construction of the eastern 300 feet of the plat. No development plan has been provided for the property, but one will be required before building permits are issued.

Also on Tuesday, the planning commission:

• Tabled, 7-0, consideration of proposed zoning regulations to allow staff more time to consider the issues.

• Tabled, 7-0, an additional consideration of subdivision regulations and a public hearing concerning such.

• Approved, 7-0, the final plat for the 15251 State Ave., property as requested by Benchmark management.

• Approved, 7-0, a reaffirmation to the Basehor City Council of the annexation of the Cedar Lakes Estates subdivision pursuant to the policies and objectives adopted by the annexation plan.

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